Dubai, UAE, 29th February, 2016: The world’s top cross country rally drivers and riders have been promised a classic endurance test in the 26th edition of Abu Dhabi Desert Challengee in April under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the Ruler’s Representative in the Western Region. Event founder Mohammed Ben Sulayem said today that the great support and encouragement of Sheikh Hamdan and the wider backing of the Abu Dhabi Government guaranteed that the Desert Challenge would continue to set the highest standards in desert rallying. ADDC is the opening round of FIM Cross Country rallies and second round of FIA Cross Country Rallies. “We are indebted to His Highness for making it possible for us to come this far” said Sulayem, President of the Automobile and Touring Club of the UAE, the rally organisers. “His Highness support, and that of the Abu Dhabi government, has allowed us to build an event which is recognised by competitors, officials and media as the best of its kind” he added. “We are given unlimited official cooperation by the authorities in the Western Region and this makes it possible for us to create a superb route each year through some of the most dramatic desert terrain on earth” added Ben Sulayem. “This gives the Desert Challenge a very special flavour all of its own, and it is something that keeps bringing competitors back to the UAE year after year.” The ATCUAE has a strategic partnership to promote and develop the event with Abu Dhabi Motorsports Management, which is putting more of its resources and expertise behind the event, This agreement underlines the crucial support provided by Abu Dhabi to ensure the Desert Challenge continues to set the pace in the FIA World Cup and the FIM Cross Country Rallies World Championship for bikes and quads. The support of the Ruler’s Court in the Western Region, and the Western Region Municipality, ensure key logistical assistance to allow the rally to set a spectacular test of desert rally driving skills and stamina. Again this year the event’s strategic partners include Abu Dhabi Municipality, the UAE Army, Abu Dhabi Police, ADNOC, Abu Dhabi Aviation, Al Ain Water, Abu Dhabi Waste Management, Rotana and Centro Hotels – Yas Island and Qasr Al Sarab Resort by Anantara. The 26th Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge roars to life with a super special spectator stage at Al Fursan Circuit on Saturday 2nd April before the cars, bikes and quads set off on a five-day journey through the giant dunes and desert plains of the Western Region. The rally finishes back at Yas Marina Circuit on 7th April. In 2014 Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge was the top ranked event in the FIA World Cup for Cross Country Rallies for cars, based on official reports submitted to motor sport’s world governing body by the observers appointed to assess each round.

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