Oman sailors strug­gle at World Op­ti­mist re­gatta

Muscat Daily - - SPORTS -

Mus­cat – With the top youth sailors from 62 coun­tries com­pet­ing at the Op­ti­mist World Cham­pi­onship 2017 in Pat­taya, Thai­land, the five-mem­ber Oman team found it hard to keep pace with their much ex­pe­ri­enced ri­vals.

Af­ter two days of rac­ing amid strong tide, un­fa­mil­iar con­di­tions and rains, the best Omani sailor was Al Moatasem al Farsi, who was placed a dis­tant 135th among 281 sailors on Sat­ur­day.

The five young­sters – all mem­bers of the Oman­tel Youth Pro­gramme – cer­tainly are hop­ing to gain the ex­pe­ri­ence amid a world-class com­pe­ti­tion.

Mo­hammed al Qasmi, also placed in Green fleet, like Farsi, was at 150th place while Mo­hammed al Alawi, placed in Blue fleet along with Alla al Am­rani, was at 213th place.

Am­rani was strug­gling at 256th place while the only girl par­tic­i­pant from Oman, Samiha al Riyami, com­pet­ing in Red fleet, was at over­all 203rd place.

“It is a mas­sive fleet and a com­pletely new en­vi­ron­ment, but it is a great op­por­tu­nity for them,” said youth pro­gramme man­ager Mohsin al Bu­saidi.

“In Oman we do not have a va­ri­ety of sail­ing con­di­tions so we need to travel to al­low our sailors to ex­pe­ri­ence dif­fer­ent en­vi­ron­ments, light con­di­tions and strong wind con­di­tions. They need to un­der­stand dif­fer­ent as­pects of sail­ing to be ready for fu­ture events. Even­tu­ally the aim is for them to be­come Olympic or good off­shore sailors.”

In the Green fleet, Farsi was ranked 34th while Alawi was placed 38th among 70 par­tic­i­pants fol­low­ing Sat­ur­day's races.

Samiha was ranked 55th in her Red fleet while Alawi was 56th and Am­rani 62nd in the Blue fleet.

Rac­ing in Thai­land con­tin­ues till Thurs­day, with a mix of in­di­vid­ual and team rac­ing events.

The Oman squad for the Op­ti­mist World Cham­pi­onship in Pat­taya, Thai­land dur­ing the open­ing day on Fri­day

Samiha al Riyami

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