Al Rahji is competing on snow for the very first time, driving the Ford Fiesta Regional Rally Car (RRC): essentially a World Rally Car with a 30mm restrictor and aerodynamic modifications, making it less powerful than the full-specification car. It is designed to be used on national and regional events, but can quickly be converted to World Rally Car specification.
Currently, the RRC is at a similar level of performance to the Super 2000 machine, making it eligible for the Super 2000 World Rally Championship. Al Rahji is contesting the Super 2000 series this year, and at the moment he is fifth in the class and 25th overall.
The Saudi Arabian driver is mentored by former factory Ford driver Simon Jean-Joseph, who commented: “I think Yazeed has the possibility to be really fast: I have to say that I have been very impressed. He has the right approach and he is quick to learn: on a few stages he has been less than two seconds per kilometre slower than the overall leaders.”
M-Sport team principal Malcolm Wilson, whose firm developed the Fiesta RRC, was pleased with the new car’s world championship debut.
“I think it’s shown itself in a very good light and Yazeed has done a sensible job. The concept is clearly a valid one and it will be interesting to see where it goes from here.”
Al Rahji’s next event will be Portugal at the end of March.