The Saudi Automobile and Motorcycle Federation (SAMF) has announced initial details of the Tabuk-Neom Rally, the second round of the 2023 Saudi Toyota Rally Championship, which takes place on May 18-20.

Running under the chairmanship of Prince Khalid bin Sultan Al Abdullah Al Faisal, the President of the SAMF, the event will run over three days, with a traditional qualifying stage and two demanding desert stages. This is the first time a rally has ever run out of the city of Tabuk.

The event is open to cars complying to FIA regulations and bikes running under the auspices of the FIM. In addition, there will be a national event running at the rear of the field.

Administration and scrutineering checks will take place at the service park at the Grand Millennium Hotel in Tabuk on May 17 before the pre-rally press conference on May 18 morning. This precedes the ceremonial start and the all-important qualifying stage on Thursday (May 18) afternoon to determine start orders for the desert sections.

The first of the special stages takes place on Friday (May 19), with the action reaching a conclusion on Saturday (May 20) before the post-rally press conference and presentation ceremony. The official entry list will be announced later this week The Tabuk-Neom Rally is being run in conjunction with the Ministry of Sport and in partnership with official sponsor Abdul Latif Jameel (ALJ) Motors and strategic sponsor Saudi Investment Bank (SAIB).

The Saudi Toyota Rally Championship is scheduled to run over four events this year. The Saudi Baja-Hail was the opening round in February and also a round of the FIA World and Middle East World Cups for Cross-Country Bajas and the FIM Bajas World Cup.

Rounds three and four, Rally Qassim and Rally Jeddah, will take place on September 14-16 and December 14-16 and offer teams an excellent opportunity to test before the 2024 Dakar Rally.

Last year, Yazeed Al Rajhi claimed victories in the Aseer, Qassim, Saudi Baja and Jeddah events to seal the title with a clean sweep of wins in the car category in his Overdrive Racing Toyota Hilux.

The Black Horse Team’s Saleh Al Saif won the championship’s T3 title, while Saudi Border Guard team driver Khaled Al Feraihi and French co-driver Sebastien Delaunay won the National Championship. Fellow Saudi Ahmed Al Shegawi secured the T2 title.

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