A group of Oman Sail young athletes concluded a successful participation in the Arab Sailing Championship, bringing home gold medals after a stunning performance in a number of racing classes. Organised by Abu Dhabi Sailing and Yacht Club, the racing took place from December 21–24 in the Optimist, Laser 4.7, Laser Radial and Laser Standard classes. The championship was an opportunity for the young sailors, all of whom are members of Omantel’s Youth Sailing Programme, to test their skills in the regional waters and build on their sporting pathways. They collectively gained the highest position in terms of team racing after close competition against teams representing the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Bahrain, Algeria and Morocco.
In terms of individual results, Alaa al Amrani came second overall in the Optimist class, with only one-point difference from the leader, while Talal al Harami finished fourth, followed by Mohammed al Qasmi in sixth and Mohammed al Alawi in the eighth place. Samiha al Riyami, the only female to participate from the Omani squad, was the leader amongst all female participants, and got in 10th position overall.
It was an Omani leader position for the Laser 4.7 class, with Abdul Malik al Hinai scoring 18 points, followed by Salim al Alawi in sixth place and then Ubaid al Battashi in 10th place.
In the Laser Radial class, Musab al Hadi, best known for his performance in 49er class, got fifth place overall with 32 points. In the Laser Standard class, Hussain al Jabri gained the fourth position, with fellow Ahmed al Hassni in sixth position.
Commenting on the success, Mohsin al Busaidi, Youth Programme Manager at Oman Sail, said, “This event was definitely a confidence booster for every member of the squad. With their determination, the team rounded up a training-packed year by gaining leading positions that will build on their aspirations in future competitions.”
Oman Sail National Team Manager, Rashid al Kindi, who joined the Omani delegation to Abu Dhabi said: “The results show an overall progress in terms of the team’s performance, a result of our continuous efforts to elevate their skills in their perspective sailing classes”.
Overall, the Sultanate received three gold medals, followed by the Bahraini team which got two medals and the UAE, which got one gold medal. The prize-giving ceremony was held under the patronage of Shaikh Khalid bin Zayed bin Saqr Al Nahyan, Chairman, UAE Sailing & Rowing Federation, and attended by Sheikh Khalifa Abdullah Al Khalifa, President of the Arab Sailing Federation as well as members of the Asian Sailing Federation.
The Arab Sailing Championship is held every two years, with the next edition scheduled to be hosted by Morocco.