March 31, 2017 – Raafat Al Mohtar will race a Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX in the opening round of the 2017 Lebanese Rally Championship, the 33rd Spring Rally, but he’s got bigger ambitions for the remainder of the season as he prepares to race a different beast.
In a conversation with Biser3a.com, Raafat revealed that he is planning to make his debut on an R5-spec car in the second round of the season, joined by co-driver Carlos Hanna.
“We were supposed to race a Ford Fiesta R5 from the start of the season, but the car was not ready yet so we decided to kick off the year on the Mitsubishi Evo IX and we’ll make the switch to the Fiesta R5 in the next round.” said Raafat.
In 2016, Raafat completed a full season on a Mitsubishi Evo IX in the Group N category, which means that his target for the Spring Rally is to be competitive in his class. However, he also aims to be competitive when he races the Fiesta R5.
“We should be comfortable with the Evo IX in the 33rd Spring Rally and we want to be competitive in the Group N category among Evo IX cars; the Evo Xs are quicker. As for the R5, we also want to be competitive and we’re looking into a long-term commitment in the championship with it.”
Raafat confirmed that he will also race the Fiesta R5 in the Lebanese Hill Climb Championship in order to master the new car and earn as many points as possible for the Lebanese Rally Championship.
“I would like to thank Roger Feghali and Motortune Racing for their support since 2008, in addition to my sponsors Advanced Car Rental, Golden Wheat and Tajamo3 Aramoun Baldati. Also, thank you guys for the continuous coverage.”