Nasser Al-Attiyah

Nasser Salih Nasser Abdullah Al-Attiyah (Arabic: ناصر صالح ناصر عبدالله العطية‎; born 21 December 1970 in Doha) is a Qatari rally driver and sport shooter. He was the 2006 Production World Rally Champion, a 13-time Middle East Rally Champion, 2014 and 2015 WRC-2 champion, three times winner of FIA cross-country rally Cup (2008,2015 and 2016) and the 2011 and 2015 Dakar Rally winner. He currently competes in the World Rally Championship and Middle East Rally Championship for the Qatar World Rally Team. His 2011 and 2015 victories in the Dakar Rally make him the only Middle Easterner to win the competition twice.

In shooting, Al-Attiyah won the bronze medal in the men’s skeet event at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London.

Career
Rallying
Al-Attiyah has competed in the Middle East Rally Championship since 2003, having claimed 65 race wins and 13 titles. He drove a Subaru Impreza until 2009 and a Ford Fiesta since 2010, except in 2012 when he drove Peugeot 207 in two rounds, and in 2016 when he drove a Škoda Fabia.

The driver also competed at the Production World Rally Championship from 2004 to 2009. He won the title in 2006, his third year in the championship alongside co-driver Chris Patterson, driving a Subaru Impreza. He gained the championship lead after finishing second in the PWRC class in the Rally Mexico and afterwards won the following two rounds, Rally Argentina and Acropolis Rally. He also finished runner-up in 2005 and third in 2009. He scored his first points during the 2009 season, finishing eighth overall in the Rally Argentina.

In 2010 and 2011, Al-Attiyah drove in the Super 2000 World Rally Championship for the Barwa Rally Team, classifying seventh overall in both years. For the 2012 season, Al-Attiyah moved to compete in the top division for the Qatar World Rally Team. He secured a career-best fourth place at the Rally de Portugal. In 2013 he switched to a Ford Fiesta WRC. He finished fifth overall at three races, and ranked 11th in the final standings.

Al-Attiyah stepped back to the WRC-2 in 2014. Driving a Ford Fiesta RRC, he scored four wins and won the championship. In 2015 he defended the championship with three wins.

Cross-country rally
Al-Attiyah debuted at the Dakar Rally in 2004 with Mitsubishi, finishing 10th overall. He entered the next three editions with an X-Raid BMW, finishing sixth in 2007.

After winning the 2008 FIA Cross Country Rally World Cup in a BMW, he took part alongside Swedish female co-driver Tina Thorner in the 2009 Dakar Rally in Argentina. He was among the frontrunners until he got disqualified on 8 January 2009 after he had missed 9 checkpoints, the rules stating that 4 missed checkpoints are the maximum. He finished second in the Rally dos Sertões from Goiânia to Natal in Brazil (24 June-3 July 2009) behind Carlos Sainz of Spain.

In the 2010 Dakar Rally, Al-Attiyah finished second, 2’12” behind Carlos Sainz, the smallest gap in the history of the race. On 15 January 2011, Al-Attiyah won the legendary Dakar race ahead of fellow Volkswagen drivers Sainz and Giniel de Villiers, making him the only Arab to ever win the difficult race.

The driver claimed the 2015 FIA Cross Country Rally World Cup driving a Mini All4 Racing X-Raid with five wins, and the 2016 FIA Cross Country Rally World Cup for Toyota with six wins.

Shooting

Nasser Al-Attiyah (left) posing for a picture with Mutaz Essa Barshim after winning bronze at the 2012 Summer Olympics
In shooting, Al-Attiyah came in fourth place in the 2004 Olympic Games in clay pigeon shooting and 15th overall in the 2008 Olympic Games, missing out on qualification for the final round by 2 points. In the 2012 Olympic Games he won the bronze medal after a shoot-off against Valeriy Shomin.

Career results, references and external links – Wikipedia here >