Enjoy Valentine’s Day at Emirates Palace Stand Up Paddle Festival

Jay Asser 3/02/2015
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Get going: The festival is open to enthusiasts of all ages and abilities.

This Valentine’s Day, join your significant other, friends or family to compete and have fun at the Emirates Palace Stand Up Paddle Festival.

Held on the beautiful beach of the Emirates Palace on Saturday, February 14, the Festival encourages everyone from regular paddlers to those who have never paddled before to hit the water for an active experience.

The races are open to people of all ages and experience levels, providing an opportunity to work on your fitness, core, balance and mind.

The events include a 500 metre sprint, along with 2km and 4km distance races. For those wanting to paddle with partners, a relay race is available, as well as tandem couples race to celebrate Valentine’s Day.

Hurry up: Registration closes on the midnight of Saturday, February 7.

Anyone registered for the Naish One Series can take part in the Naish One N1SCO 100m sprint, which will conclude the day of competition, followed by awards for the winners.

Don’t fret if you’re in need of a board because the Festival will have boards that can be used for the 500m beginner race, the Naish One N1SCO race, the team relays and tandem couple races.

Paddling won’t be the only thing on offer for racers, as food will be available for purchase at stations from noon until 15:00. Visitors can fill up on burgers, hot dogs, shawarmas, falafel, nachos and soft drinks. 

The cost of entry for the Festival is Dh100 for adults, Dh50 for kids and includes a racing day T-shirt, water bottle, raffle ticket and more. 

Registration closes at midnight on Saturday, February 7 and anyone interested can sign up at www.premieronline.com.

So add some competition to your Valentine’s Day this year and take to the beach for a fun day out at the Emirates Palace Stand Up Paddle Festival.

What: Emirates Palace Stand Up Paddle Festival
Where: Emirates Palace beach, Abu Dhabi
When: Race day is Saturday, February 14 beginning at 08:30, with registration closing at midnight on Saturday, February 7
Contact: Register at www.premieronline.com and visit www.abudhabisup.com for more information

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Sailing Arabia 2015 unveils new reversed challenging route with UAE stopovers

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Difficult route: SATT is the Gulf region's leading offshore race.

An all new format and route is set to provide the teams of EFG Sailing Arabia – The Tour (SATT) a fresh challenge in 2015 as the appeal of the Gulf region’s leading offshore race is set to grow further.

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The SATT 2015 will see a radical change to the 700 nautical-miles route around the Arabian Peninsula as the introduction of training sessions and a new starting point create a more demanding challenge for sailors in the form of strong and sustained headwinds in the early stages.

UAE sailing enthusiasts and those new to the sport alike can play witness to the excitement first hand on February 19 when the boats arrive into Al Hamra Marina and Yacht Club, Ras Al Khaimah before heading to Dubai where teams will take part in a thrilling inport race on February 21. Leg 4 then arrives into Abu Dhabi on February 22.

EFG Sailing Arabia – The Tour 2015 takes place from February 15th – 28th with practice rounds taking place from February 8th.

Schedule:

–    Training sessions – 11-14th February, Muscat

–    Leg 1 – 15th February, Muscat- Sohar

–    Leg 2 – 17th February, Sohar – RAK

–    Leg 3 – 19th February, RAK – Dubai

–    Leg 4 – 23rd February, Dubai – Abu Dhabi

–    Leg 5 – 24th February, Abu Dhabi – Doha

–    Leg 6 – 26th February, Doha – Manama

Since EFG SATT first launched in 2011, the fleet has crossed the start line in the Bahraini capital, Manama and finished in Oman’s capital city of Muscat but for the first time in the history of the race, the route has been reversed. All the boats, all identical Farr 30s, will start their campaigns at the premier waterfront development, The Wave, Muscat. 

The second leg, which at 172 miles, the equivalent of 40 hours of sailing is the longest of the event, takes the fleet around the Musandam Peninsula to Ras Al Khaimah before the boats head off on short hops to Dubai where the first of two inshore race days will be staged, then to Abu Dhabi.

The Four Seasons Marina at Doha will host the next stopover and also roll out the red carpet for guests attending the second inshore racing day on February 26th. In total, seven stopovers will showcase some of the best venues and facilities in the region, and the world.

The fleet is expected to arrive at the finish in Bahrain fourteen days after setting off, at the Amwaj Marina in Manama, Bahrain’s newest marina, where a grand prize giving ceremony will be staged to bring the 2015 event to a worthy close and the winning team will collect their trophy.

In 2014, it was Sidney Gavignet’s EFG Bank (Monaco) who took the title and his return to defend his crown is highly anticipated in 2015.

Over the next few weeks, organisers Oman Sail will reveal the line-up for the 2015 event but already, SATT has seen more entries than ever and a larger contingent from Gulf region and is set to attract even more sports enthusiasts than last year when new audience records were set.

“Sailing Arabia – The Tour has grown in stature over the past five years because it is a well-run event set amongst beautiful scenery that offers sailors, both professional and amateur from all over the world, the chance to train and compete in fantastic conditions during the winter,” said Oman Sail CEO David Graham.

“It has always been our aim to rekindle our mutual Gulf maritime heritage by offering a first class winter racing venue for sailors and provide an outstanding platform to grow regional talent to raise the standard of our home-grown sailors. EFG Sailing Arabia – The Tour ticks all the boxes in helping us achieve our aim.”

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Abu Dhabi to host 2015 XCAT Series finale

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the final round of the 2015 UIM XCAT World Series will take place in the UAE.

The World Professional Powerboat Association (WPPA) announced yesterday that the final round of the 2015 UIM XCAT World Series will be hosted by the UAE capital, Abu Dhabi, at the end of the year.

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Representatives from both the Abu Dhabi International Marine Sports Club (ADIMC), where the race will be held, and Dubai International Marine Club (DIMC) gathered at DIMC Mina Seyahi to make the announcement.

Attending the function were the ADIMC President and advisor to the UAE President, H.H Dr Sheikh Sultan Bin Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, as well as the DIMC President, H.H Sheikh Mansour Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

Also in attendance was WPPA President H.E Dr Saif Al Ketbi and ADIMC board member Ahmed Al Rumaithi, DIMC Chairman H.E Saeed Hareb, DIMC and WPPA Vice President Dr Khalid Al Zahed, DIMC and WPPA board member Essa Khalfan Bin Kharbesh and Arif Al Zaffain – DIMC Board Member and Victory Team General Manager.

“This is a wonderful day for both Dubai and Abu Dhabi and on behalf of the WPPA, it is a pleasure to welcome Abu Dhabi on board as hosts of the final leg of this year’s UIM XCAT World Series,” said Al Ketbi.

On behalf of ADIMC, Al Rumaithi added: “We are thrilled to be involved in the XCAT World Series in this way.

"We were already represented by two boats in the final round last year but now we are really looking forward to hosting the action and welcoming all the teams from around the world to ADIMC at the end of the season.”

(From left) Arif Al Zaffain (DIMC Board Member), Essa Khalfan Bin Kharbesh (DIMC and WPPA board member), Saeed Hareb (DIMC Chairman), Dr Saif Al Ketbi (WPPA President), Sheikh Mansour Bin Mohammed Al Maktoum (DIMC President), Dr Sheikh Sultan Bin Khalifa Al Nahyan (ADIMC President), Ahmed Al Rumaithi (ADIMC board member), Dr Khalid Al Zahed (DIMC and WPPA Vice President) and Mohammad Hareb (DIMC CEO).

Meanwhile, Hareb expressed his pleasure at the collaboration between the two cities. “It is wonderful to be working together with Abu Dhabi on this and we are anticipating a fantastic final round of racing in the capital at the end of the year,” he said.

Also announced yesterday was that Abu Dhabi will be represented in the Series from the start of the season, with a boat from Team Abu Dhabi joining the action from the opening round in Fujairah from February 25-27.

More details on the teams joining the Series will be announced in due course.

For more information on the XCAT World Series, log on to www.xcatracing.com

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