Sailing: Oman Sail sailors taste medal success at UAE National Day Regatta

Sports Tuesday 15/November/2016 16:29 PM
By: Times News Service
Sailing: Oman Sail sailors taste medal success at UAE National Day Regatta

Muscat: Oman Sail’s youth competitors sailed to success at the UAE National Day Regatta, which was hosted at the UAE Heritage Club in Abu Dhabi.
An incredible effort from Oman’s young sailors culminated in them winning three out of four of the competitive classes.
The regatta welcomed a strong field of local and international boats to each race, with competitors hailing from Bahrain, Qatar, India and the UAE. The prospect of being able to train alongside international opponents meant that Oman Sail took along not only its best youth talent to the UAE, but also its inexperienced sailors. This was in an effort to offer them the opportunity to develop their skills on the water in a competitive environment.
Day one of the competition saw steady winds of 10 - 12 knots accompany the sailors as they took to the waters outside the harbour. In contrast, variable conditions presented themselves during day two of the regatta, which hosted racing inside the harbour.
A wind speed of 13-14 knots in first race shifted to 9 knots, which presented the young competitors with the challenge of altering their positioning as they progressed on the course.
The Sultanate dominated the event, which saw eight out of the twenty competing young Omanis placed in positions 1-4 in the Optimist, Laser 4.7 and Laser Standard races.
All the top four places in Optimist (49 boats competing) went to Oman sailors with Al Moatasem Hamood Al Farsi, Mohammed Al Alawi, Allah Saleh Al Amrani and Samiha Neyel Al Riyami (first girl) took the honours in that order
Zakariya Sulaiman Al Wahaibi finished on top in Laser 4.7, which saw 19 boats competing.
Among the 10 boats in Laser Standard, Ahmed Al Hasani finished first, while Ahmed Al Wahaibi and Hussain Al Jabri claimed the third and fourth spots.
The results from this competition are particularly promising.
Oman Sail’s Youth Programme Manager Mohsin Al Busaidi said: “This performance is just the start of a long journey for our competitive youth sailors. As Oman pushes further towards its ultimate goal of qualifying for the Olympics, there will be many obstacles that promise to develop the skills of our sailors and test their abilities out on the water. We are looking forward to embracing the next of these challenges on December 21-24 when the team returns to Abu Dhabi and the UAE Heritage Club to compete in the Arab Championships. With our wins against the international opposition in the UAE National Day Regatta we can proceed confidently with our training and hope to present a solid performance at this key event that closes the 2016 youth racing calendar.”