Gilles Chiorri, of Yachts Consulting, arrived in Dubai on Wednesday as he and Rottee Guillaume prepared for the skippers briefing and yacht inspections prior to the launch of the Dubai to Muscat 25th Anniversary Yacht race on Thursday November 10.
Yachts Consulting are the international race managers of many high-profile sailing races, including the MOD 70, Route Du Rum, and the Figaro as well as the Transat Bakerly from Plymouth to New York. They are also five-time managers of the Sail Arabia The Tour with Oman Sail.
Joining Chiorri for the race was Rottee Guillaume, the French national coach for extreme sailing who will be acting as race officer alongside Gilles, as well as David Worrall, technical co-ordinator of the UAE Sailing and Rowing Federation, and skipper Craig Turner of Bobbie, who placed third in last year’s race.
The race is a milestone for the Middle East event and challenging because of the changing winds and thermal effects from the desert blowing day and night. On the east side of Musandam the wind may change completely due to the relief of the mountains.
After Musandam, the yachts enter relatively open waters and the wind can build up much more freely. Strategically there are lots of directions to sail, whether to go deep into open waters or hug the coast.
Guillaume, in Dubai for the first time, said: “I am very happy to be here and work again with Gilles. The facilities and Dubai Offshore Sailing Club are beautiful. I am excited to meet so many new people and experience the Middle East.”
Dubai Customs, who became the principal sponsor this year after first sponsoring in 2015, will host a four-day Race Village at the Umm Suqueim 1 Fishing Harbour. The Race Village will, from November 10-13, include Try Sailing, marine safety demonstrations, a dhow, many children’s activities, food trucks and is free to enter.
The Race Village will also be the centre of activity for the children of GEMS Education who have taken part in the Sohar Education Programme. Each sponsor has taught the children elements of their own expertise.
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