Please select your home edition
Edition
Marine Resource 2016

Emirati stars ready for first competitive race - in Hong Kong

by ADOR Media on 20 Apr 2011
Abu Dhabi’s Adil & Butti have left the UAE capital for the their first offshore race this week in Hong Kong Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing (ADOR) ©
Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing’s Emirati sailing stars, Adil Khalid and Butti Al Muhairi, are in the final throes of preparation for today's biennial San Fernando Race out of Hong Kong – the first competitive event the duo will undertake since joining the Volvo Ocean Race 2011/12 contesting team.

A key facet of their intensive, multi-continent training regime - which is designed to get them physically and mentally prepared for the gruelling, 39,000 nautical mile Volvo Ocean Race, beginning in Spain this October – the San Fernando Race is a stern test for Adil and Butti under strict race conditions.

Running at 488 miles, the two UAE under-30s will be under the supervision of Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing skipper, Ian Walker, as they look to stamp their mark on the Cat 1 Offshore Race, which starts in front of Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club's Kellett Island clubhouse today, Wednesday 20 April.

And with only six months to go before the Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority (ADTA)-backed team is under Volvo Ocean Race starting-orders in Alicante, both 22-year-old Adil and 26-year-old Butti are eager to get as much experience under their belts as possible.

'This is a big test for us. I have done competitive racing before when I was in the Olympics and Asian games, however this is completely new to me. Racing for days on end, as part of a team, with little or no sleep and food, is what we need to get used to. I am confident that we will do well, and learn a lot in the process,' said Adil, who beat off more than 120 UAE nationals to earn his coveted spot on the team.

Racing as part of a 12-strong crew onboard the newly commissioned TP52 ‘Freefire’ - owned by Hong Kong sailor Sam Chan, the event’s record holder since 2001 - Butti is keen to learn as much as he can from the other sailors taking part, as he looks to pick up a few tricks of the trade on a route which Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing will have to navigate during the Volvo Ocean Race third leg in 2012.

'We are sailing with other crew members from outside the Volvo Ocean Race, so I want to talk to them and understand their experiences; it could be a big help if I’m on board next year. I know the weather could be an issue so that will be unusual given that we have come from the calmer waters of Abu Dhabi. For me, I think learning to manage my sleep and eating will be the biggest test,' added Butti, who comes from a long-line of traditional UAE dhow sailors.

Following on from their San Fernando Race experience, Adil and Butti will complete the final stages of their training in the UK in May, when they return to industry-leading UK Sailing Academy in Southampton for offshore, navigational and race training skill workshops. They will join a residential course that is predominantly water-based coupled with the theory of navigation, preparation and safety and compete in a number of off-shore races in the English Channel.

The programme, which combines instructor training and race experience, will be critical in the progression of the history-making duo, as they set to become the first UAE nationals to compete in the VOR, often called the ‘Everest of Sailing’.

In addition to entering a world-class team into the Volvo Ocean Race 2011/12, Abu Dhabi is fully committed to its New Year 2012 hosting of the Volvo Ocean Race prior to the yachting fleet embarking on its third leg to Sanya, China. The emirate will be the first Middle East stopover in the event’s 37-year history.

ADTA, which was behind the emirate's successful bid to become a 2011-12 Volvo Ocean Race home port and the event’s first Official Destination Partner, believes the Abu Dhabi stop-over will be a race highlight giving visitors a unique opportunity to connect with its centuries-old maritime heritage. It is also looking to its race involvement to position the emirate, which boasts a 400 kilometre coastline and over 200 natural islands, as a preferred winter sailing destination.
Southern Spars - 100InSunSport - NZBakewell-White Yacht Design

Related Articles

Oman Air stay top of Extreme Sailing Series table with podium place
Oman Air stayed top of the overall leaderboard after posting a third place in Act six and shifted focus to the next Act. Oman Air stayed top of the overall leaderboard after posting a third place in Act six in Madeira and immediately shifted their focus to the next Act in Lisbon, Portugal, in two weeks.
Posted on 25 Sep
Olympic Gold medalist and Volvo Ocean Race winner up for WS Board
Torben Grael (BRA) is amongst the 15 nominations for one of seven places on the Board of Directors of World Sailing Torben Grael (BRA) is amongst the 15 nominations for one of seven places on the Board of Directors of World Sailing in November. The five times Olympic medalist, Volvo Ocean Race winner and several times America's Cup competitor will bring a much needed sailing edge to the Board of World Sailing if he can navigate the politics of the controlling body of the sport.
Posted on 25 Sep
Norauto foils to victory at the GC32 La Reserva de Sotogrande Cup
Racing in a light wind Minoprio’s desire to win the leeward position on the start line put Norauto in front in all races Racing in a light westerly Levante wind, Adam Minoprio’s desire to win the leeward position on the start line put Norauto in front in all three races, and he went on to win two of them.
Posted on 25 Sep
Team Tilt finish second at the GC32 La Reserva de Sotogrande Cup
Team Tilt added a second place to scoreboard this weekend at the penultimate event of what has been a successful season The seven crew members on board the 32-foot flying catamaran posted three outright wins from 15 races to finish second overall after Adam Minoprio on Norauto. Team Engie, skippered by Sebastien Rogues finished in third place.
Posted on 25 Sep
Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge - Images from Régates Royales
The final round of the Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge is underway at Cannes in the 38th Régates Royales. The final round of the Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge is underway at Cannes in the 38th Régates Royales with classic yachts and Dragons. Eugenia Bakunova of mainsail.ru was on the water at Cannes and provided this gallery of images from the penultimate day of the regatta.
Posted on 25 Sep
Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge - More images from Régates Royales
Second gallery from the final round of the Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge at Cannes The 38th Régates Royales, the final round of the Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge is underway at Cannes. Eugenia Bakunova of mainsail.ru was on the water at Cannes and provided this second gallery of images from the penultimate day.
Posted on 25 Sep
World Sailing - Henderson sets out foundations of his President bid
Paul Henderson is standing for another term as President to get some significant and vital issues facing Sailing address Paul Henderson is standing for another term as President to get some significant and vital issues facing Sailing addressed by sailors with their input both individually and via their International Class Associations. Henderson sets out below what he believes will be the foundations of his next Presidency.
Posted on 25 Sep
World Sailing President nominated by 45 Member National Associations
Incumbent World Sailing President, Carlo Croce (ITA) has welcomed nominations from 45 Member National Associations Incumbent World Sailing President, Carlo Croce (ITA) has nominations from 45 Member National Associations [MNAs] for his re-election as the President of Sailing’s International Federation. Nominations for the position of President have been formally published by World Sailing and show widespread support for Croce.
Posted on 25 Sep
Swiss stars Alinghi lose mast in collision in action-packed day
The Extreme Sailing Series™ lived up to its name on the penultimate day of Act 6 in Madeira The Extreme Sailing Series™ lived up to its name on the penultimate day of Act 6 in Madeira as a collision between rivals Alinghi and Red Bull Sailing Team resulted in the Swiss crew losing their mast.
Posted on 25 Sep
Oman Air in peak form going into final day at Extreme Sailing Series
A fresher breeze on the third day gave the GC32 fleet a chance to give the spectators an invigorating show of action A fresher breeze on the third day gave the GC32 fleet a chance to give the spectators lining the shores on the south coast of the island an invigorating show of speed and action and it was Oman Air that led the way with seven podium places – including two outright wins – in seven races.
Posted on 24 Sep