MERC: Hamed Al-Wahaibi retires

The 35 year old Omani driver Hamed Al-Wahaibi, has announced his retirement from active motor sport. He has asked us to convey to all his friends and partners this message: "After the start of the Rally Argentina I came to a decision that my ...

The 35 year old Omani driver Hamed Al-Wahaibi, has announced his retirement from active motor sport. He has asked us to convey to all his friends and partners this message:

"After the start of the Rally Argentina I came to a decision that my life in the sport must come to an end. As many of you know, my priorities in life lie elsewhere, to my growing family, my country and my faith. Necessary absences from home are not in the interests of family and business responsibilities back home. For some time this challenge to my priorities has been causing a lot of worry.

"The last eight years of my life, when I have been active in rallying, have been perhaps some of the most enjoyable and exciting of all. In that time there have been so many achievements of which I, together with all the people with whom I have been working, can be proud. On a more personal level it has been such a pleasure to make so many good friends around the world. But all of this personal satisfaction has been hard for my family and colleagues back home, to all of whom I am grateful for indulgence.

"I can tell you that the loss of our friend Possum Bourne has had a significant, if not a primary, bearing on my decision. I could not help witnessing the very visible effect his loss had on everybody who were touched by his life. It finally told me that the sport, however much the authorities take care, still carries the sort of risks which are hard to pass on to those you love and to whom you are responsible.

"The realisation that I will not be working closely with my motor sport friends and colleagues in future is one of the hardest factors in my decision to retire. It has made my decision an agony. This came to a crisis point for me during Rally Argentina. I have already privately explained my decision to my closest colleagues, particularly to my manager Luca Pregliasco and to Manfred Stohl, who has prepared my cars this year. I am also explaining my premature withdrawal from the Production Car World Rally Championship to the FIA who have promoted the series in a most enthusiastic and professional way. I hope they will understand.

"My private interests will forever rest with the people I have met in rallying. I hope we will continue to meet each other and I hope you have not seen me for the last time in a competitive rally car. For now, I would be grateful if you accept this notice as my heartfelt appreciation and respect for all of you. I pray for your understanding."

"rally-net" and all the rally fans around will miss him .

-duby miller

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Series Other rally
Drivers Manfred Stohl