Annie Seel and Mikaela Ahlin Kottulinsky
Annie Seel and Mikaela Ahlin Kottulinsky Image Credit: Supplied

Annie Seel and co-driver Mikaela Ahlin-Kottulinsky stayed ahead of the chasing pack on Day Three of Rally Jameel to take the overall win in their Toyota RAV4 by more than nine points. The Swedish pair took the least penalties of all the 34 teams to bring home the win, ahead of UAE driver Atefa Saleh and her American co-driver Eleanor Coker in their Toyota Prado. Maha Al Hamly flew the flag for Saudi, finishing third with her co-driver Pochola Hernandez, also in a Toyota Prado.

“All of the women on the rally are heroes,” said Seel after the race. “You think it’s only a navigational rally, but to do this precision driving in the dunes we faced today was very challenging, especially in the broken dunes. I am so proud to be racing with all of them, the Saudi Arabian racers, the women from the Rebelle Rally and the total novices that really rose to the challenge and proved themselves.”

Al Hamly was delighted with her third-place finish after teaming up with Hernandez for the race.

“I wished that I was in the passenger seat because every second I had to have my entire focus on the road and with my co-driver,” said Al Hamly. “We passed through some of the breathtaking historical sights of my home country, so it was honestly such a fantastic experience.

“When I first entered our first briefing, I thought it would be filled with professional race drivers, but to my surprise, it was open to drivers who just have a passion for motorsport. I genuinely want to thank Abdul Latif Jameel Motors and Bakhashab Motorsport and all their sponsors.”

Final standings

(after 1105.31kms)

1. Annie Seel, Mikaela Ahlin-Kottulinsky (SWE) 2166.590pts

2. Atefa Saleh, Eleanor Coker (UAE/USA) 2157.263

3. Maha Al Hamly, Pochola Hernàndez (KSA/ESP) 2155.246

4. Ewelina Chlebowska, Hanna Riehle (POL/GER) 2153.957

5. Lyn Woodward, Sedona Blinson (USA) 2151.947