September 15, 2016 – One of Motortune Racing’s finest assets is the young Rodolphe Asmar who has been making a name for himself locally and regionally by garnering splendid results. The 20-year-old completed the local season having collected one championship title and goes into the final round of the Middle East Rally Championship aiming for another one.
Rodolphe’s 2016 campaign kicked off from Qatar where he contested his first ever regional rally. At the Qatar International Rally, Rodolphe pulled off an excellent performance alongside Joseph Matar to find himself ranked 3rd in Group N and 5th overall in the end.
The second round in Kuwait didn’t go according to plan for Rodolphe who was classified 4th in Group N and 5th overall, before a two-minute penalty saw him slip to 5th in Group N and 7th overall. The end result was not ideal, but Rodolphe left the Arabian Gulf with some good points.
Jordan Rally was an even tougher affair for the young driver. He retired from the first leg of the event and lost valuable time as a result. However, he returned under rally 2 regulations on the second day and put in an inspiring drive to cross the finish line ranked 3rd in Group N and 7th overall.
With podiums in Qatar and Jordan, Rodolphe moved up to 2nd place behind Abdullah Al Kuwari in the MERC-2/Group N championship and his aim for the fourth round in Lebanon was to steal the lead from his Qatari opponent.
Locally, Rodolphe drove a Ford Fiesta R5 to 3rd place overall and 2nd place overall in Spring Rally and Jezzine Rally respectively. He retired from the Cedars Rally with a mechanical problem in his Mitsubishi Evo X, but returned stronger than ever in Baabdat Hill Climb – the 3rd and final round of the 2016 Lebanese Hill Climb Championship – to win in Group N and register a first major accomplishment by securing the Lebanese Hill Climb Championship Group N title.
In Rally of Lebanon, Rodolphe opted against pushing hard after a broken driveshaft slowed him down. Nevertheless, his pace was good enough for 2nd in Group N and 4th overall – a fantastic outcome in only his second consecutive ROL appearance. Moreover, he achieved his target of collecting valuable points for the MERC and snatching the MERC-2 lead from Abdullah Al Kuwari.
Rodolphe is now gearing up for the fifth and final round of the MERC in Cyprus (October 7-9) where he wants to claim the MERC-2 title. He currently has 92 points, compared to 85 for Al Kuwari, and will need to finish at worst one position behind the Qatari in order to seal the title.