Sergey Perelygin from Russia and Maria Jankowska from Poland won the men’s and women’s races at the XDubai Spartan Race held in Hatta on Friday.
This inaugural event was the opening round of the Middle East Championship with top racers from across the world going head-to-head for a stake in the total cash prize of AED 185,000.
Perelygin has been a regular in the UAE and neighbouring Bahrain for the past few years.
“I have seen it all here, and I think that this is perhaps one of the best courses that I have competed on. It has a bit of everything,” he said.
The Russian was followed by UAE resident from Norway Hallvard Borsheim with a time of 2:59.03 hours, while Marco Antonio Becerra Castro took the third in a time of 3:06.13 hours.
The women’s honours were reserved for Polish girl Maria Jankowska as she crossed the line first with a quick time of 3 hours, 46.57 minutes.
Maria was followed by Dubai resident Ivana Kolaric from Serbia with a time of 3:49.04, while pre-race favourite Frenchwoman Angelique Chetaneau made a memorable comeback after a broken arm had put her out of action for nearly three months, taking the third spot with a time of 4:06.31 minutes.
Mohammed Javad, General Manager, XDubai, the organisers of the event, was happy with the successful staging of the event.
“We had more than 10,000 people showing up today and that says a lot of the way this discipline is growing among sports enthusiasts in the country and beyond. We are confident Spartan racing will be a huge hit in the UAE in the near future,” he said.
Held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, the race was meant to put more focus on Hatta as an eco-tourism and sporting destination.
The race that was organized by the Dubai Sports Council, is also a part of the UAE’s strategic development plan for the region.
Men Beast category: 1. Sergey Perelygn (2 hours, 43.47 minutes); 2. Hallvard Borsheim (2:59.03); 3. Marco Antonio Becerra Castro (3:06.13).
Women Beast category: 1. Maria Jankowska (3 hours, 46.57 minutes); 2. Ivana Kolaric (3:49.04); 3. Angelique Chetaneau (4:06.31).
Men Sprint category: 1. Mohammed Bassam Obaidat; 2. Yu Min Wang; 3. Firas Sharaf.
Women Sprint category: 1. Latifa Essarokh; 2. Karima Al Marzouki; 3. Agnieszka Kosmala.
History never repeats, so the song goes, but that wasn’t the case in the AFL Middle East Grand Final rematch between the Dubai Dragons and the Multiplex Bulls, the crunch match of Round 2 over the weekend.
And so it proved as the champion Dragons torched the Bulls once again, although only by a slender 11-point margin.
Played Friday afternoon at The Sevens, conditions were very hot under the desert sun but with a slight breeze across the pitch.
The Bulls were dealt a big blow before the ball-up with Jon Hickey, who kicked five goals in Round 1, unavailable to travel.
Just as in last season’s Grand Final it was a very physical game from the start, with the intense rivalry between the two clubs growing in every match.
The first and second quarter were an arm wrestle, but the Bulls’ six-pointers seemed to come a bit easier through some quick, clean ball movement out of the middle, while the Dragons had to scrap for their majors.
After half-time, however, the Dragons started to win the contests, as the game started to shape up as a mirror image to last season’s decider.
The Dragons got on top in the third quarter with debutant Darcy O’Sullivan lively up front and second gamer Chris Burke winning plenty of ball in the midfield By three-quarter time the Dragons had turned it around to lead by 21 points.
The proud Bulls were desperate to stop the repeat and came storming home with big man Nick Burchell intercepting every ball kicked to him and the midfield of Joseph Yodgee and Jack Egan finding acres of space.
In the end the Dragons could only manage a single behind to the Bulls’ one goal five points in the final term, but it was enough for the premiers to hold on to a 9.9.63 -7.10.52 triumph.
In the round’s other match, the Dingoes’ slow start to the season continued as they went down by 43 points to the Abu Dhabi Falcons in the capital.
Making things very tough for the Dingoes was the fact they only had 11 players who could make the away trip.
The home side came out firing and put seven goals on the scoreboard to the Dingoes’ one in the first quarter.
It was looking like another big loss for the Dingoes with the second period much the same as the first and the Falcons taking a comfortable 53 point lead into the half.
For the Falcons, utility Zac Moon was very dangerous up forward and veterans Stephen James and Rhys Watkins were getting lots of ball in the midfield and across half-back.
To the Dingoes credit they took it to the Falcons in the third quarter, with captain Ben Dawson starting to find some ball, which he converted to four majors, and their defence keeping the Falcons to just one goal.
The Falcons were not helped by the fact their club stalwart and president Ty Farrell went down with a serious knee injury five minutes into that third term.
The game was over in the last quarter but the Dingoes gutsed it out strongly with only one player on their bench and ended up outscoring the Falcons in the second half. The final result was the Falcons 17.14.116 to Dingoes’ 11.7.73.
Round 3 will be played over November 23 and 24 with the Dingoes facing the Dragons and the Bulls up against the Falcons.
Eddie Hall, the current World’s Strongest Man, two former Mr. Olympia winners, Ronnie Coleman and Jay Cutler, and Big Ramy – the Arab world’s most prominent bodybuilder – will headline this year’s Dubai Muscle Show, the region’s leading fitness and bodybuilding show.
Running between 8-9 December 2017, the second edition of Dubai Muscle Show, organized in collaboration with Dubai Sports Council, will see the world’s biggest athletes and the region’s most honed physiques join over 150 of the world’s leading sports nutrition, fitness and bodybuilding brands over 14,000 square metres of exhibition space at Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) – the new venue catering for the show’s remarkable five-fold growth in size since debuting last year.
As well as hundreds of sample give-aways from brands including Sporter, Life Pharmacy, Dr. Nutrition, Quest, Muscletech and dozens more, Dubai Muscle Show 2017 will also debut its very-own Emirates Strongest Man and Woman competitions, as well as its brand-new international fitness and active-living show, DMS Active.
“The words ‘muscle’ or ‘bodybuilding’ can often be dismissed as a niche sport for the superhuman monsters, but in reality, the majority of people in gyms across Dubai by definition are ‘body-building’.
They incorporate resistance training or lifting weights into their workouts, in order to get better muscle tone, strength and mobility which helps them feel and look better. We all need muscle, especially as we get older to help us stay mobile well into later life.
Fitness enthusiasts are in for a treat as some of the world’s greatest bodybuilders, athletes, personalities and social media stars come calling, with top drawcards including Hall, Coleman, an eight-time Mr. Olympia; Cutler, a four-time Mr. Olympia, and Egyptian-born Big Ramy, who won the Arnold Classic in Barcelona last month.
In addition, Kai Greene, the American IFBB professional bodybuilder and soon-to-be-star of hit Netflix show Stranger Things Season 2, is also Dubai Muscle Show-bound.
With the combined roster of fitness and muscle mass talent counting a global social media reach of more than 26.5 million, Dubai Muscle Show offers the perfect opportunity for UAE fans to meet their muscle and bodybuilding heroes together all under one roof.
Those looking for a little healthy competition will find more than their share of challenges, competitions and sporting events, with the International Federation of Bodybuilding (IFBB) Gulf Classic returning for a second year, which will see over 500 competitors posing it out for the chance to win one of 9 pro-card’s on offer that will allow them to compete on the professional circuit.
The Emirates Strongest Man and Woman will also be named during the show, as more than 30 regional strongmen and women compete in a series of superhuman strength challenges such as atlas stone lifting, tyre-flipping and car deadlifts to discover the Emirates’ brawniest man and woman in the business.
TICKETS ARE AVAILABLE AT