Manateq Qatar Cross-Country Rally gets underway at Souq Waqif
The ceremonial start of the Manateq Qatar Cross-Country Rally (MQCCR) took place at Souq Waqif yesterday, marking the start of the opening round of the 2020 FIA World Cup for Cross-Country Rallies.
The opening round, MQCCR is being held in Qatar from February 22 to 27 and brings together teams from more than 22 countries, including the US, Argentina, Brazil, Equador, Western and Eastern Europe, Jordan, and the GCC.
The teams will cover around 1,430 competitive kilometers in a route of 2,200km across the length and breadth of the State of Qatar.
The FIFA World Cup for Cross-Country Rallies is one of the most prestigious rally racing events in the world.
Organized by the Qatar Motor and Motorcycle Federation (QMMF), this is the second year the highly-popular event is being held in Qatar.
Yesterday, the opening event saw the attendance of several racers who participated in a pre-event press conference. This was followed by cars' flag-off from the iconic cultural center of Doha.
Before this, the rally cars underwent their final technical checks and the contenders took part in a mandatory briefing session organized by QMMF.
Part of the ceremonial start of the Manateq Qatar Cross Country Rally in Souq Waqif, the opening round of the Cross-Country World Cup 2020 season.@Manateq_qa @AlAttiyahN #crosscountry #crosscountryrally #championship #qmmf #qatar pic.twitter.com/Un1l2sPWCi— QMMF (@QMMF_official) February 22, 2020
Following the first round in Qatar, the rally will continue in a series in countries including UAE, Russia, Kazakhstan, and Morocco.
Vehicles taking part in rounds of the FIA World Cup are split into several categories, most notably T1, T2, T3, T4, and T5.
The T1 section caters to modified and powerful vehicles that normally sit at the top of the leader boards, while the T2 section caters to more standard-type series production cross-country vehicles.
One of the most popular rising categories in cross-country rallying is T3 for open, lightweight cars such as the Can-Am Maverick X3, Polaris RZR 100 or the Yamaha.
Some of the top names in rally racing will be taking part in MQCCR, including the Spanish Can-Am driver Emilio Fernando and the defending FIA World Cup for Cross-Country Bajas champion Fedor Vorobyev.
Qatar’s Nasser Saleh Al-Attiyah won the candidate event in 2011 and has since won six of the eight FIA World Cup rounds (2012, 2014-2017 and 2019), the Saudi Arabian driver Saleh Al-Saif who recently won the T3 category at Ha’il Rally in his homeland, the American driver Austin Jones, the Dutch businessman Kees Koolen will also join the event.
Car crews will be eligible for 600 litres of petrol, free WiFi, preparation and warehousing facilities, electricity within the service park at the Losail Sports Arena, a car washing area, free drinking water, a sleeping area and a range of entertainment activities.
Competitors will also be offered prizes in various categories, a night’s hotel accommodation, complimentary food in the bivouac restaurant, free visas (where applicable) and access to HD television footage from QMMF TV.
Qatar Living is proud to be the social media partner this year.
Make sure to check out our social media to keep track of the latest content.
Instagram - @qatarliving
Twitter - @qatarliving
Facebook - Qatar Living