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12 February 2002, 01:18 pm
Malta Win Individual and Team Events
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Dubai International Optimist Regatta
Dubai

The regatta kicked off, as it did last year, with the opening ceremony on the water. In total there were seven teams coming from Algeria, Kuwait, Qatar, Egypt, Malta, Sri Lanka, and the United Arab Emirates, and a total of 42 competitors.
The first two races kicked off on the 29 January with young UAE sailor Omar Shaheen winning both races with a respectable margin with Matthew Fleri Soler of Malta getting a 2nd and a 4th, and another UAE Sailor, Khalifah Subah wrapping up third on the first day with a seventh and a second. As the regatta proceeded into the second day, Omar Shaheen continued with his consistency to pull in 3 fourth places to keep him at the top.

On the first two days, light to medium winds had been common, but on the third day it was a chance for the boys of Malta to prove their worth in the strong conditions, caused by a Shamal blowing through the Arabian Gulf. This upset weather forced the organisers to race the sailors inside the new marina canal, which brought out some interesting situations concerning rules, starts, and mark roundings.

In the three races, which were won by Benjamen Borg, Matthew Soler, and Daniel Calascione (allof Malta) respectively, fitness and stamina was going to be the telling factor here. Omar Shaheen could not keep up with the Maltese sailors as they sailed away to victory. The final was sailed in very light winds and a nice big swell, which seemed to have a very sickly effect on a lot of the competitors (and the committee boat for that matter!!!). In the tricky conditions, Dina Ahmed Ramadan of Egypt proved the most consistent to come through in first, followed by young Maltese Cadet Karl Cremona in second, and in third was another Maltese sailor, Benjamen Borg.

The regatta ended with a closing ceremony and a disco for all the kids to try their dancing skills, in my opinion the Algerians won that one. Without any surprises except for one, the Maltese topped the team results, which was based on the sum of the top 4 sailors of that respective country without discards, with the U.A.E in a very respectable second, followed by Egypt in third.

Results:

Position Nationality Name Total Points
1 MLT Matthew Fleri Soler 23.00
2 UAE K.Subah Al Romaithy 47.00
3 MLT Karl Cremona 49.00
4 UAE Omar Shahine 51.00
5 MLT Benjamin Borg 55.00
6 MLT Daniel Calascione 77.00
7 EGY Mohab Essam El-Bokl 90.00
8 EGY Dina Ahmed Ramadan 92.00
9 MLT Simon Psaila 94.00
10 EGY Rasha Ragab 107.00


Team Results:

1 Malta
2 United Arab of Emirates
3 Egypt
4 Algeria
5 Sri Lanka
Sid Ahmed Bensalah/News Editor
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