EP31: 🏁 Rally Jameel: 2023 winning team co-driver Hanna Riehle on living outside her comfort zone and being part of a supportive sports community in the region

The Mettleset Podcast

May 15 2023 • 1 hr 12 mins

When Rally Jameel, the first navigational rally in the region exclusively for women, was launched in Saudi two years ago, we were excited to see how this event with a low barrier to entry would encourage more women into motorsports.

Today, we have one half of this year’s Rally Jameel’s winning team Hanna Riehle, who takes us a little bit closer to what it was like on ground, navigating the desert of Saudi with 81 other women who grabbed this unique opportunity to prove their mettle.

This was Hanna and co-driver Evelina Chlebowska’s second year competing as team Sandstorm Express. After coming very close to ranking at the top in the first edition, they clinched the win in this year’s 1,600km, five-day long rally, which took place in March. All in a 10-year-old Toyota FJ Cruiser and without any sponsors.

Hanna tells us how she’s always been naturally competitive, so this win comes as no surprise. The sports consultant from Germany moved to Saudi in search of a new adventure in 2018. From playing multiple sports, including football and Crossfit, and getting her sailing and motorbike licenses, to leaving home at 18 to volunteer in Uruguay, Hanna lives outside of comfort zone.

In this episode, we chat with Hanna about her foray into rally racing and the importance of cooperation and complete confidence in your teammate to stay safe and competitive in these races. Hanna also explains how this rally is filled with camaraderie and support for everyone participating and how such initiatives can propel women's sports in the region.

Hanna’s energy was infectious and we’re looking forward to a trip to Saudi to explore all that it has to offer in sports soon.

Enjoy the show!

To know more about Rally Jameel,  head to rallyjameel.com and @rallyjameel

If you want to listen to our interview with Darkar Rally athlete Dania Akeel, you can find  that episode HERE.

Today’s episode was supported by the awesome and adventurous team at Deep Dive Dubai, the world’s deepest pool. Check them out for some truly awe-inspiring scuba and freedive experiences. Visit www.deepdivedubai.com

Our wider support team for this episode includes Editor JJ Thompson and our Artwork is by the talented Alexandra Hickey of Studio Theodore.

For more info,  visit www.themettleset.com , and follow us on @themettleset

Dawn & Afshan

@dawnable

@afshahmed

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