Going Out: Discover the region's natural beauty

Jay Asser 15/01/2017
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The race takes in some stunning backdrops.

The 25th edition of the event will take place from February 3-4 and is set to feature new routes between Dibba on the Omani coastline into the Hajar mountains.

Held since 1993, one of the longest running events in the region will offer solo distances of 30km, 50km and 72km, as well as the original 72km team relay and 50km family relay race.

The solo races and family relay race will be held on Friday, February 3, while the team relay takes place the following day.

In the 30km, the course has been altered so participants avoid the stretches of asphalt from the coast, instead going through the Zighy Bay turnoff and into the narrowing Wadi up to an elevation of approximately 500m.

If you’re a roadrunner or take part in half marathons, the 30km distance will suit you best and offer a challenge on a different terrain.

The course for the 50km will follow the 30km route, but the extended distance will see competitors ascend steep zigzag bends through cliff and the Musandam peninsular mountains. Marathon runners will be familiar with the distance.

Throughout all the distances, the race will have numerous checkpoints to provide support for runners.

Neil Young, race director, said: “We continue to see increasing interest in the ultimate challenge of the 72km solo.

How to get involved

  • What: Salomon Wadi Bih Run
  • Where: Golden Tulip Hotel in Dibba, Oman
  • When: Solo races Feb 3, team relay Feb 4
  • Contact: www.premieronline.com to sign up, www.wadibih.com for info

“Over the last 10 years, the category has developed from a few extreme athletes attempting something different to the ultimate long distance regional running challenge with stiff competition and some superb times.

“Anyone who completes this category deserves to be called the King of the Mountain.

“Regardless of your ability, there is a race for everyone. The original 72km team relay race is a favourite on the GCC running calendar.

“It really is a unique event, and many teams choose to make a weekend of it and camp on the beach ahead of the race. Make sure you register in advance to secure a slot for your team.”

Make sure to register by the deadline of Thursday, January 19 or sooner as places can sell out. Visit www.premieronline.com to sign up and www.wadibih.com for more information.

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Hit the open water at the Dragon Boat Festival

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The competition is open to corporate, social, university and school teams.

The new year is already two weeks old, but the UAE Dragon Boat Association (UDBA) has wasted little time in organising their next event.

More than 60 teams have signed up for their inaugural DP Dragon Boat Festival on January 27 and 28 at the Dubai Water Canal and with registration closing on Saturday, there’s still time to join them.

Since establishing in China, the sport has become hugely popular around the world and the UAE is no different with the dragon fever catching on across the country. UDBA’s calendar already consists of events in major emirates including Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Ras Al Khaimah attracting big numbers and this month’s, which is supported by the UAE Sailing and Rowing Federation, is set to build on that success.

“We’ll have around 1,000 people set to be there which is very encouraging,” said Jason Mackenzie, technical director of UDBA. “There have been a lot of team entries and there’s still room for teams to sign up before we reach our maximum capacity of 75.”

Categories range from novice to advanced with entries open for corporate, social, university and school teams, while training sessions will be offered prior to the event. Whether you’ve tried dragon boating before or not, Mackenzie insists it will be a memorable visit.

Light a fire: See why dragon boating has become a popular sport.

Light a fire: See why dragon boating has become a popular sport.

“I’ve been organising competitions for 10 years now and we get huge numbers,” he said. “There are many activities you can do here in the UAE, especially in sport and dragon boating is great to learn. You don’t need any experience and every team has their own individual technique when paddling so it’s easy to learn.

“It’s a very welcoming environment where you can feel part of the group and develop a social network with other teams and that extends way beyond the waters.”

He added: “For the free sessions, dvanced booking is required and the organisers will give them a time and day of when to practice.”

Besides the thrilling encounters on sea, competitors and spectators can look forward to plenty of activities on land.

“We have a lot of exciting things for people to do,” said Mackenzie. “There will be fitness classes, climbing walls, bouncy castles and food outlets, plus all the races are pretty exciting to watch so it will be a great day out.”

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Electric Run returns to Abu Dhabi next month!

Denzil Pinto 11/01/2017
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The Electric Run Recharged will see participants run on a glimmering 5k course.

Although there’s some time to go until the Electric Run Recharged returns, sign up this month and you could win a chance to fly your friend into Abu Dhabi from anywhere in the world to take part too.

The world’s brightest night run returns to the UAE on February 24 at Yas Gateway Park, Abu Dhabi with an updated race format and new features.

Thousands flocked to Zabeel Park, Dubai for their inaugural edition last year and given the success of that, one lucky runner’s experience will be even more special when he or she is joined by a friend or family member.

Anyone who purchases a ticket before January 29, will be entered into a draw to win a complimentary return flight to Abu Dhabi for the iconic event.

Those who take to the course can look forward to an unforgettable experience, going through a journey combined with light and sound. Once you cross the finish line, the fun doesn’t stop there with the glow-in-the-dark party.

For the first time, runners will have an opportunity to run through the dusk on the glimmering 5k course before the crowds arrive as part of their ‘Power Hour’ from 18:30.

“The Abu Dhabi event is back by popular demand and Electric Run Recharge’s next stop is set to be the most exciting one to date with everything we’ve got planned out for it,” said David Sanderson, race director from event organisers Fast Track.

“The second edition will debut the ‘Power Hour’, specially designed courselands that highlight Yas Gateway Park’s distinct landscape and most importantly unparalleled live entertainment for everyone.”

Sign up: Ticket prices for the run range from Dh150 to Dh245.

With the Electric Run Recharged the only 5k in the region to have themed courselands in the brightly-lit course, Daman ActiveLife are confident big numbers will flock to Yas Gateway.

“The Electric Run presented by Daman’s ActiveLife is a unique race, which contributes to improving the overall health and well-being of local communities by inspiring them to enjoy vitality,” said Daman’s CEO, Dr Michael Bitzer. “Additionally, this event is an ideal platform for individuals of all ages and physical abilities to engage in group exercise in spectacular surroundings.”

Adding to the dimension of the experience, there will be the Electroband – an illuminating LED bracelet that syncs with various soundtracks throughout several courselands and with the beats of other runners.

Ticket prices vary between Dh150 and Dh245 with team and individual categories to choose from.

WHAT: Electric Run Recharged
WHERE: Yas Gateway, Abu Dhabi
WHEN: February 24
CONTACT: For more information or to register, visit www.electricrun.ae.

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