Jeddah Rally Toyota 2023 to round off Saudi Toyota Championship season

The four-round Saudi Toyota Rally Championship reaches its conclusion next weekend (December 14th-16th) with Jeddah Rally Toyota 2023, the event running for the second time since 2016.

Jeddah Rally Toyota 2023 is being organised by the Saudi Automobile and Motorcycle Federation (SAMF), in conjunction with the Ministry of Sport and official partner Abdul Latif Jameel (ALJ) Motors. It is running under the supervision of SAMF President H.R.H. Prince Khalid bin Sultan Al-Abdullah Al-Faisal.

The three-day event will be based at King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC). This will host administration checks on Wednesday, December 13th.

KAEC is an emerging Red Sea coastal centre anchored by King Abdullah Port and KAEC Industrial Valley. It is home to over 100 diverse multinational and Saudi companies and is a modern leisure and tourism district offering a ready-made platform for Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 initiatives.

The ceremonial start will take place at KAEC from 12.00hrs on Thursday (December 14th), before competitors tackle a Prologue stage at the coastal village of Thuwal, 30km south of KAEC, from 15.00hrs.

The first of two longer desert selective sections of approximately 247km starts in Rabigh, north of Jeddah, on Friday (December 15th) morning.

The competitive action concludes on Saturday (December 16th) with the second selective section of around 110km, which starts and finishes at the historic agricultural governorate of Khulais in the Mecca Province, northeast of Jeddah. The post-event press conference and prize giving ceremony will then take place at KAEC from 17.00hrs onwards.

The Jeddah Rally ran for the first time in 2014 and was won by Yazeed Al-Rajhi and French co-driver Alex Winocq in a Hummer Dbug. The Saudi repeated the feat the following season with German navigator Timo Gottschalk, before Qatar’s Adel Abdulla teamed up with Frenchman Sébastien Delaunay to win the event in a T2 car in 2016. Al-Rajhi won for the third time last December with Dirk von Zitzewitz in a Toyota Hilux.

Victories in the T2, T3 and T4 categories fell to Ahmed Al-Shegawi, Saleh Al-Saif and Maha Al-Hameli last year.

Abdulmajeed Al-Khulaifi is a two-time winner in the quad category, having taken the laurels in 2014 and 2015, while Haitham Al-Tuwaijri is the defending champion on a quad and Hamdan Al-Ali won last year’s motorcycle section on his Husqvarna.

Neil Perkins,