Nasser Al-Attiyah will race the Sealine Cross-Country Rally in his homeland behind the wheel of the Qatar Red Bull Rally Team’s V8 Buggy. The four-stage race in the deserts of southern Qatar is an important piece of the puzzle as Nasser and the team prepare for the 2014 Dakar Rally.
A hectic schedule of racing sees Nasser arrive in his homeland after last week’s trip to the Algarve where he secured a superb fifth place finish at Rally de Portugal. Now Nasser is not only swapping gravel tracks for desert dunes as he returns home but he’s also leaving behind his Ford Fiesta RS WRC to once again take the reins of the Qatar Red Bull Rally Team’s V8 Buggy.
The Sealine Cross-Country Rally is Nasser’s first competitive outing in the Buggy since January’s Dakar Rally ended prematurely for the Qatar Red Bull Rally Team. Despite limited preparation time the Buggies driven by Nasser and Carlos Sainz won five of the eight Dakar stages they completed and left the team with plenty of positives to take away from their trip to South America.
Now the countdown to the 2014 Dakar Rally has begun and the heat and rigours of the Sealine Cross-Country Rally will give Nasser, co-pilot Lucas Cruz and the entire team a perfect opportunity to put everything they picked up on their trip to South America into practice.
A tireless combination of testing and competitive racing will be key to Nasser and the Qatar Red Bull Rally Team realising their winning ambition for the 2014 Dakar Rally.
A top class field of international competitors at the Sealine Cross-Country Rally will ensure that Nasser and the Buggy will have to be in perfect harmony if the Qatari is to end the week with a home victory. Stiff competition will be provided by two-time Dakar winner Jean-Louis Schlesser and former European Rally Champion Krzysztof Holowczyc among others.
In an addition to the 35 cars signed up to race in Qatar there is also a field of 14 motorcycles, headed up by three-time Dakar champion Marc Coma. The Sealine Cross-Country Rally is the second stop of the FIM Cross-Country Rallies World Championship and Coma is out to defend his title after recovering from an injury that saw him miss the 2013 Dakar Rally.
The Sealine Cross-Country Rally is taking place across the deserts of Qatar between April 22nd-26th.