What to know

2017 Qatar International Rally Happening This Week

Qatar International Really record winner Nasser Saleh Al-Attiyah and his codriver Mathieu Baumel in a Ford HRX race in the 28th Baja Portalegre 500, on Nov 1, 2014

Prepare yourself for a loud week ahead as engines are revving up for the 2017 Qatar International Rally.

As many as 30 drivers from more than 12 countries are preparing to take part in the 2017 Qatar International Rally, the Qatar Motor and Motorcycle Federation recently announced.

The Qatar International Rally is the first round of the FIA Middle East Rally Championship and will be taking place between February 3 and 4.

Top seed, Qatar’s own Nasser Saleh Al-Attiyah have some 12 Qatar International Rally wins under his belt, but will face some tough competition with his French navigator Matthieu Baumel, from likes of defending champion Rashed Al-Naimi, Khalid Al-Suwaidi and Kuwait’s Masoud Al-Saleh.

The event will be based within the Losail Circuit, just north of Doha, with a two-day route laid out under the supervision of QMMF President Abdulrahman Al-Mannai and Executive Director Sultan Al-Muraikhi.

The Qatar International Rally was launched as the Qatar Rally back in 1970s, and is an international rally racing event held annually in Lusail City, a few kilometers outside the Qatari capital Doha. Over the years it has become a cornerstone event to the Middle East Rally Championship, along with the Dubai International Rally.

Local driver Nasser Al-Attiyah holds a record of 12 wins in 13 years, and is followed by 9-time winner the Emirati Mohammed bin Sulayem and Qatari Saeed Al-Hajri who has had five wins.

First day of racing will include six special stages, with one remote refueling point and no car servicing. The drivers will be timed over six additional stages during day two.

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