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Nasser Al-Attiyah

Date of birth : 21/12/1970

Who is he? Dakar winner, World Rally Championship class title winner, Olympic Games medallist in skeet shooting, multiple Middle East champion… you name it, this all-round sporting colossus has pretty much done it.

He’s unbeatable in Cyprus, right? He’s won the Cyprus Rally a table-topping five times and notched up eight Troodos Rally victories, the country’s former Middle East championship counter. However, his bid for a sixth Cyprus Rally in June 2018 was wrecked by a final-stage puncture, which demoted him to fourth overall.

Anything else? He’s a winner in the FIA World Cup for Cross-Country Rallies. In fact, Al-Attiyah’s record-breaking fifth Cyprus Rally in June 2017 came on the back of his first-place finish on Rally Kazakhstan.

What makes him so good in Cyprus? “There is no secret but I work very hard and we have the experience,” he says. “The rally is a mix between slow stage, medium stage and fast stage and we need to manage the speed on the different stage. The hot weather is no problem because we do a lot of race like the Dakar Rally where we stay 12 hours inside the car in hot temperatures. But we know this race is really hard and very hot. It’s my favourite rally and we try to do our best.”