Muscat: One of Oman Sail's first ever recruits Ali bin Hamed Ambusaidi has been given international recognition for his work as a race official by being appointed to the jury of the Asian Sailing Federation Youth Cup finals in Abu Dhabi next month.
He becomes the first Omani to be honoured with such an appointment, which has been earned after a spell of serving on several juries at international events in Oman.
Through this experience, Ambusaidi has acquired valuable knowledge on the racing rules of sailing and positioning on the race course and has the potential to be a top class international judge, according to Takao Otani, a member of World Sailing Events Committee with responsibility for ASAF judges.
“I have worked with him on several events and he is very dedicated. We are pushing for him to become an international judge, but it will take a long time and he will have to study hard. The important thing is we see potential.
“He has a very clear idea of fair play which is what sets him apart from others, even though he has not done much racing. It is a difficult job because you make decisions which cause some people to love you and some people to be upset so you need to have a deep understanding of the rules on the race track and you have to be strong and Ali has shown a real aptitude for the role.”
Oman Sail has developed a raft of quality sailors since it was set up in 2008 as well as a team of support professionals across all disciplines. These include race officials who are being trained and being given experience in events around the Sultanate to prepare them to officiate at top class events around the world.
Creating and growing local judges is one of the toughest objectives since it demands years of studying complicated rules and regulations and applying them in pressured situations on the race course. There have been several Omani judges taking part in the international events organised by Oman Sail in the last years but this is the first time an Omani judge has been appointed by the Asian Sailing Federation to officiate in an international event outside Oman.
“I am delighted that the Asian Sailing Federation has chosen me for this exciting opportunity,” said Ali Ambusaidi. “Through Oman Sail, I have had the chance to work on some of the biggest races in the sport of sailing and I’ve had excellent mentors. I am thankful to Oman Sail and everyone who helped me hone my skills and will continue to work hard to excel in this field and be an ambassador for my country.”
The ASAF Youth Cup finals will be held in Abu Dhabi from April 5 to 9.