The Dubai International Baja combines two World Cup series on its return to the Al Qudra Desert.
The World Cup rallying makes a welcome return to the UAE later this month when the Dubai International Baja combines two series taking the sport back into action across the globe.
Ruled out last year by the COVID-19 emergency, the event assembles a strong international line-up of drivers and riders for the second round of the 2021 FIA World Cup for Cross Country Bajas for cars, and the opening round of the FIM Bajas World Cup for bikes.
The fourth edition of the rally takes place on Feb.18-20 under the patronage of Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Crown Prince of Dubai.
Habtoor Polo team win IFZA Silver Cup
Northern Warriors exact sweet revenge on Delhi Bulls to clinch Abu Dhabi T10 crown
Mohammed Ben Sulayem, President of the Emirates Motorsports Organization, confirmed on Sunday that government authorities have given the official go ahead for the event on approving stringent COVID-19 protocol put in place by the EMSO.
Top Emirati rider Mohammed Al Balooshi will have high expectations for his home event.
“We’re particularly thankful this year for the support and encouragement given to us by Sheikh Hamdan, which was vital to help us bring back top-class rallying,” said Ben Sulayem, the FIA Vice President for Sport.
“We’ve been working closely with the government authorities, and both the FIA and the FIM, to put in place strict procedures to ensure the health and safety of everyone involved.
“The Al Qudra desert gives us a perfect environment for Baja rallying, especially with the current requirement for events to be run well away from public areas. We expect a very competitive and exciting rally.”
As part of the COVID-19 protocol, competitors, service crew, officials and all other participants must obtain a negative PCR test result 48 hours or less prior to the event in order to take part.
The Dubai Baja was launched in 2017 as a natural successor to the Dubai International Rally, the UAE’s first major motor sport event with a 37-year history.
Traditionally rounding off the FIA Middle East Championship and often giving the regional series a dramatic finish, it brought drivers from across the region and overseas, but suffered from dwindling entries in recent years.
Ben Sulayem, who won it 15 times, responded as head of the national motor sport authority by introducing the Baja format. Better suited for desert regions, this shorter version of a cross country rally opened up the event for buggies, bikes and quads in addition to cars, and the move has been rewarded with a surge in entries.
Poland’s reigning world champion Jakub Przygonski won the Dubai Baja cars title for a second successive year in 2019, with UAE-based South African rider Aaron Mare claiming the bikes crown. Top Emirati rider Mohammed Al Balooshi will have high expectations for his home event.
Another high caliber Dubai Baja entry list will be announced shortly by the EMSO, and the rally follows this week’s opening World Cup round for drivers in Russia, with others to follow in Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Spain, Hungary, Poland, Italy and Portugal.After Dubai, the FIM World Cup series for riders extends to Jordan, Qatar, Portugal, Brazil, Spain, Hungry and Chile.
Hankook 24H Dubai will bring Dubai Autodrome alive this weekend with more than 250 drivers across 54 cars, representing 12 brands and 33 nationalities, on the grid in one of the world’s most exciting 24-hour endurance race.
After Renault DP World Formula 1 Team came to the Emirates to conclude the 2020 season in the UAE’s capital after a remarkable performance throughout the season, as they bagged three podium finishes.
The world’s longest desert ultramarathon is back and will take place this December 9th-13th in Al Marmoom Desert Conservation Reserve.
Delivering a power-packed performance, the UAE team emerged as champions at the Jiu-Jitsu Championship of the 10th Nad Al Sheba (NAS) Sports Tournament 2023 in Dubai on Friday.
Sheikh Mohammed said that the success of the Dubai World Cup reflects the UAE’s determination to be a global role model for achievement and excellence in various fields.
Hayyan humbles rivals in thrilling opening race Hayyan, ridden by Oscar Chavez, in the silks of Sheikh Mansour Bin Zayed’s Yas Racing, dominated the opening race of the Dubai World Cup — Kahayla Classic.
Sheikh Mohammed said in a welcoming speech to the official booklet of the tournament: "We are pleased to welcome our honourable guests participating in the twenty-seventh launch of the Dubai World Cup. This global event that embodies within it the noble values of equestrian and its knights who come from all countries of the world to compete for the precious titles in the evening."