Our spoof of Alinghi’s press release yesterday pissed off a few Emiratis, and in between insults, one of ’em who sails wrote to correct some misconceptions about the UAE:
There are no issues regarding Iran being so close, with frequent patrols along the border, and the racing will take place well clear of that. The waters aren’t always flat over here with some swell building up in the afternoon as well as ridiculously ugly chop. We have a thermal wind average of about 15 knots during the winter months (October to April) and any weather systems coming along with that make it only windier. I am certain that you can guarantee 15+ knots everyday in February!
Many times in the past have sailing events been let down by those who make the decisions in the UAE. As an example, the UAE used to play a regular host to the Dubai Junior Regatta, which was regarded as one of the premier events in the Fulf to international world-class junior sailors – ‘used to’ being the key – as the UAE Marine Sports Federation overruled the event because it conflicted with the Class 1 powerboat racing. This loss of such a prestigious sailing event was pointless to many, but Dubai residents take pride in their on the water version of Formula 1.