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Feature The intoxicating image of traditional dhows meandering along the Arabian coastline, transporting spices, timber, fruit and other merchandise, is forever engrained in the trade history of the countries around the Indian Ocean. It is this history that inspired a unique project – Oman Sail - to reconnect the people of Oman with their proud maritime heritage and which over the past three years has not only seen Oman establish itself as a serious sailing nation but also made a significant contribution to raising the profile of Oman internationally and boosting the country’s economy. Oman Sail is a project with many fronts; grassroots sailing, elite sailor development, world class events, sponsorship, tourism and pioneering maritime achievement, are just the headliners. But at the centre of all of this sit two words epitomising Oman Sail’s ethos ‘opportunity’ and ‘inspiration’. When Mohsin Al Busaidi, a former Petty Officer in the Sultan of Oman's Navy, became the first Arab to sail around the world non-stop in 2009 he set the bar for his fellow countrymen and women to aspire to. 158 | PQ
Since then Oman Sail has continued writing international headlines with the achievements of its sailors in the some of the world’s highest profile sailing events at home and abroad, including the Extreme 40 Sailing Series, Tour de France à la Voile, Asian Beach Games, the Clipper Round the World Race and the new Mussanah Race Week dinghy regatta. Along the way, Oman Sail sailors have achieved feat after feat. Khamis Al Anbouri was the first Omani to ever stand on the podium at a top international regatta (Extreme Sailing Series), Oman Sail’s first ever leg win in the gruelling Tour de France à la Voile was achieved in 2011 and a 100% Omani crew represented Oman in the West for the first time at a J80 event in France. But all the while, tireless work has continued at home to ensure that everything an inspired young Omani could need to forge a career in the maritime industry – whether as a sailor, boatbuilder, instructor, sailmaker - is in place. It is a project that has captured the imagination and resulted in Oman Sail selling the country and its history
The English Polo Magazine