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26 February 2005, 12:31 pm
Adel Completes Laser Title Hat-Trick
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Sail The Gulf
Doha, Qatar

The UAE's top young sailing star, Adel KHALID, has completed a hat-trick of Laser 4.7 triumphs at the Sail the Gulf Regatta in Qatar.
Khalid, the 2003 European champion, had more than a day of racing to spare as he clinched the title for a third successive year in Doha as a member of the Emirates Airline-sponsored UAE national team.

Before the penultimate day of racing got under way on Thursday, he had scored four race wins while his worst result was second, leaving him 23 points ahead of his nearest challenger, Kuwait's Waleed AL SHARSHANI.

That lead became an unassailable one by mid-afternoon as a lack of wind meant racing could not get under way, and Khalid was assured of the Laser 4.7 crown.

'It was a great performance from Adel who has proved again that he is a very talented and capable competitor,' said Saeed HAREB, managing director of Dubai International Marine Club which created a national team by launching its youth sailing programme six years ago.

Taking part in his first international regatta, Khalid MOHAMMED had climbed to fifth place with some encouraging results. The third member of the UAE team, Yousef KHALID, brother of Adel, encountered some tough competition in the Laser Radial fleet, but showed his determination by fighting back from one bad start to pull off a race victory and move into sixth place overall.

UAE team leader Issa Abdullah said: 'The boys have been a credit to the UAE, and they can only get better.

'We will now aim to build on the success in Doha and on the fine performances we saw in the recent Dubai Junior Regatta.'

Team coach Yousef Bin Lahej, a product of the UAE youth sailing programme said: 'The two boys in the Laser 4.7 category had different targets. Because of Adel's experience he had set himself the goal of winning the competition for the third year in a row, while Khalid was aiming to improve his performance over the course of the event. They both succeeded.'

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