Amandio Costa wins Ultimate Racenight’s 60 metre dash

Jay Asser 24/04/2017
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Ultimate Racenight’s 60 metre dash to test which type of athlete would reign supreme in the short sprint was won by footballer Amandio Costa, but a fall and injury suffered by Nicolas St Maurice cleared the way for the Portuguese to cross the finish line first.

The experiment, held at Dubai Sports City this past Thursday, brought together nine elite athletes from various sports, including rugby, football, athletics, basketball, kickboxing and powerlifting.

Costa edged powerlifter Wesley Depass and third-placed rugby player Morgan Ward, with a razor-thin gap of 0.5 seconds separating the top five.

“It was good. I prepared myself so this is the prize,” said Costa, who played indoor football for the Portuguese Air Force for five years.

“Like I said before, I’m really happy and humbled to race against these guys, but I’m really happy to win. It’s really good for me.”

It was St Maurice, however, who appeared to be the quickest and on his way to winning, before pulling his hamstring around the 40m mark.

The Montreal native not only ran track at Canada’s McGuill University, but played for the Dubai Barracudas in the Emirates American Football League for two years, making him a well-rounded athlete.

“I really enjoyed running my first sprint in more than 10 years. I had missed this feeling so much and it did not disappoint,” he said.

“Of course I’m disappointed with the final result, but I’m really happy with what I feel we’ve accomplished for athletics in Dubai. The main goal was to promote the sport and show how exciting it is, and I feel like we did a great job for a first time at the Dubai Ultimate Racenight.”

The 60m sprint was in addition to the usual events held throughout the Racenight series, which included standout performances from athletes of all ages in the season’s penultimate edition on Thursday.

Another record was broken courtesy of Nina Waddick, who topped her own mark by 15 centimetres with an impressive high jump of 1.20m in the U-9 age category.

For the senior women, Amal Al Roumi from Kuwait-based Spark Performance Team captured the 1,500m with a time of 5:04.50.

Familiar face Megan Dingle continued to shine as the Ultimate Athletics athlete claimed the U-13 800m in 2:25.68, coming close to the record of 2:22.51 set by Hannah Mclaughlin in Racenight 2.

The coveted 100m, meanwhile, was won by 20-year-old Neil Sabin, who trains with Al Wasl Club, in 10.82 seconds.

While this Racenight was the final opportunity to earn league points, competitors can still take part in the season’s concluding event on May 18. The sixth Racenight will include a men’s Open 60m for ages 25 and above as athletes can challenge for Costa’s throne.

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IN PICS: The 2017 Fazza International IPC Athletics Grand Prix

Sport360 staff 24/03/2017

Held from March 20-23, the ninth edition of the Fazza International IPC Athletics Grand Prix was some spectacle.

Some of the greatest para athletes in the world were in Dubai to take part, bringing with them quite the medal haul.

Dubai Club for the Disabled played host this year as the tournament continues to prove a hit with local, regional and international athletes.

Hundreds of athletes competed and the standard was higher than ever before. And, here, we bring you some of the best images from the 2017 edition.

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First hijabi weightlifter from UAE

Hiba Khan 16/03/2017
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Known as the first hijabi weightlifter in the Gulf and the first Arab woman to compete in Crossfit, Amna Al Haddad has been elevated to an inspirational icon for Muslim women and aspiring athletes.

The 27-year-old Emirati started off her journey as a fitness blogger and a full-time journalist for a local newspaper, but quickly realised that her passion didn’t stop at writing about it.

“I used to work for a newspaper in the past, and I noticed that my passion is actually sports and it’s not being a full-time journalist. So I decided to quit my job and pursue sports full-time, but I had absolutely no plans on how to go about it,” Amna Al Haddad told Sport360.

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It was a bold decision on her part, but the weightlifter made it work for her with her constant hard work and dedication.



As the first hijabi weightlifter in the Gulf, Amna Al Haddad had to face many obstacles because of her headscarf and held the media responsible for making the hijab the most politically-charged article of clothing.

She said, “You see, the thing with hijab and sports is that, it is a very new concept. But I am not a big fan of how the media is portraying the situation, because it is just an extension of who I am, it is not who I am. The hijab is part of what I do, it is part of who I am and it is part of my religion, it is not everything that I am.”

Amna Al Haddad is one of the success stories of the UAE, who reached her goals purely through her own efforts and without being handed anything.

As a proud Emirati, Amna Al Haddad aims to represent UAE on bigger platforms and hopes to promote health and fitness, not only among women, but everyone.

Click here to read Amna Al Haddad's story from depression to Olympic goal


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