Harley Davidson enthusiasts from around the world are set to gather in Bahrain next month when the Kingdom hosts, for the first time, the Middle East Harley Owners Group (H.O.G.) Rally. The four-day event will be held from 11 to 14 November, and is expected to be the largest ever gathering of motorcycle enthusiasts in Bahrain.
Details of the Rally, which has already attracted attention from across the Middle East as well as Europe and North and South America, were unveiled yesterday (ed note: 27/10/09) by Bahrain H.O.G. Deputy Director and Rally Organising Committee Deputy Head, Hani Al A’ali.
“The Middle East H.O.G. Rally is by far the biggest, most important event of the year for the region’s Harley Davidson enthusiasts,” said Al A’ali. “The annual event traditionally attracts hundreds of enthusiasts from around the world, and we are delighted to be finally hosting it in Bahrain,” he said.
The family-friendly event, which will include motorcycle rides and sightseeing trips around Bahrain for participants and their families, will be based out of a dedicated Rally Site at Al A’ali Mall. The Rally Site will have a carnival-like atmosphere with seating arrangements, food and beverages, music, street performers and entertainment for younger children. The Rally will also include a Bike Show, which will showcase some of the region’s most impressive examples of Harley Davidson motorcycles, as well as what promises to be an exceptionally impressive motorcycle parade. Although registered rally participants will have exclusive access to the Rally Site, members of the public will be able to watch the shows and enjoy the family-friendly carnival atmosphere.
Top Lebanese singer Elisa and internationally-celebrated motorcycle stuntman David Eagar will each also stage separate performances as part of the Rally. Pricing details for the Elisa concert, which will be open to the public, will be announced shortly.
“The Middle East H.O.G. Rally is designed to allow international Harley Davidson enthusiasts the opportunity to discover the region’s unique riding experience while also allowing members of the region’s different H.O.G. Chapters to ride together,” said Al A’ali. “In doing so, the Rally brings together a huge number of local, regional and international motorcycle enthusiasts and helps promote public awareness of the H.O.G sub-culture, particularly its long-standing emphasis on promoting safe, responsible ridding," he said.
“The Middle East H.O.G. Rally could well be, after the Formula One race of course, the largest international motoring event to hosted in Bahrain,” said Al A’ali. “It is an opportunity for us to showcase Bahrain’s heritage, its culture and, perhaps most importantly, its unique lifestyle offering,” he said.
The three-day event kicks-off with a welcome reception, at the Bahrain Harley Davidson dealership, that will showcase traditional Bahraini hospitality. The reception will feature live entertainment by sword dancers and a local folklore band, as well as a traditional-style buffet, complete with live cooking, homemade bread and hubble-bubble.
The Rally includes organised motorcycle rides to many of Bahrain’s most prominent historic sites including Beit Al Jasra, the traditional Muharraq souq, the Shaikh Isa House, the ancient Burial Mounds and the Bahrain Fort. A particularly scenic “Desert Ride” through Sukair and past Bahrain’s legendary Jebal Al Dukan (Mountain of Smoke) is also being organised, as are two “Thunder Parades”.
“Accommodation at various Three, Four and Five Star hotels, all within a five kilometre radius of the Rally Site at Al Ali Mall has been arranged, and we are working to help facilitate visa and other travel requirements for regional and international participants,” said Al A’ali. “We’ve also been working to finalise safety and emergency support services for the event, and we seem set to host a truly magnificent rally,” he said.
“To help keep the Rally as safe as possible and to ensure that everyone has a great weekend, we were forced to limit the total number of participants,” said Al A’ali. “We are operating our registration system on a strict first come, first served basis and, with the full system available on-line at official Rally web site (http://www.10thmehogrally.com), we expect to have most available slots filled in well before Day 1,” he said.
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