Oman Sail to Host 2022 RS Venture Connect World Championships

Muscat: Oman Sail will host the 2022 RS Venture Connect World Championships in November 2022, the first time an exclusively para sailing championship has been held in Oman. Taking place from Sunday, 20 November until Sunday 27 November at the Barceló Mussanah Resort, up to 36 teams from an estimated 15 nations will compete in the RS Venture boat, designed specifically for people with disabilities, including members of Oman Sail’s SailFree team.

Dr Khamis Al Jabri, Oman Sail CEO, said, “We are honoured to be chosen as hosts of the RS Venture Connect World Championships and have the opportunity to welcome para sailors from around the world to Oman in November. This is a huge step forward for the discipline in this region and the PDP will provide valuable training for coaches, race officials and Classifiers which will help to grow the sport in Oman. The championships and PDP will be integral in supporting the athletes as we build towards our long-term goal of developing a national para sailing team and continue to support World Sailing’s campaign to reinstate sailing at the Paralympics in Los Angeles 2028.”

Khamis Al Anbouri, Oman Sail Commercial Director, said, “The RS Venture Connect World Championships will allow the sailors from SailFree, the first para sailing program in the region, to gain valuable experience and compete against sailors from around the world on home waters as we continue to make progress in the sport. We are also looking forward to hosting such a prestigious championship and furthering Oman’s reputation as a world class sailing venue, creating new pathways for staff and coaches to be part of this and future events, and share Oman’s famous warm hospitality with our visitors.”

Dan Jaspers, Head of International Sales and Business Development for RS Sailing and the Manufacturer’s Representative for the RS Venture Connect Class stated, “I am very excited that the World Championship will be headed to Oman this year and I am happy that we have been able to partner with our friends at Oman Sail and their sponsors to make this event a reality, especially with the many challenges which sporting events are facing currently. Having been to Oman on a number of occasions, I can say for certain that it will not only be the on-water competition that will be enjoyed by those taking part, but also the hospitality of the hosts and the culture of this amazing country.”

He added, “I strongly urge all those RS Venture Connect sailors as well as Disabled Sailing programs that are currently using the RS Venture Connect as part of their day-to-day activities but that have not yet had sailors attend an international event, to do so. The experience of a Worlds in Oman is one that should not be missed. I look forward to seeing you all in Mussanah.”

As with the previous RS Venture Connect Class World Championship, the 2022 World Championship will once again feature a ‘Para’ as well as an ‘Open’ category for teams entered, increasing the opportunities for participation by sailors do not meet the World Sailing Minimal Disability Classification criteria required to participate in the Para category. The inclusion of the ‘Open’ category means that the event will present awards for both ‘Para’ and ‘Open’ Venture Connect Class Champions.

The event will also feature a three-day Paralympic Development Program (PDP) Clinic organized by World Sailing, the global governing body for the sport, to provide training for coaches and race officials, building on the success of the first PDP held in Oman in April.

Massimo Dighe, Para Sailing Manager at World Sailing said of the news regarding the Oman-based RS Venture Connect Worlds: “The opportunity to hold a PDP in Oman, linked to the 2022 RS Venture Connect Class World Championship is a really exciting one. The first ever PDP in Oman was held in March this year, so we’ll be able to return in November to continue supporting the growth of Para Sailing in the region. Our World Sailing PDPs include workshops on boat handling and racing skills, rules and regatta management, as well as the opportunity for coaches to gain experience and develop high-performance expertise. In Oman, we also prioritized classifier training earlier this year, and in November, we will host a full International Classification Seminar, that will enable the four candidates we worked with previously to become International Classifiers after a final assessment. This will be a huge achievement and a major step forward for Para Sailing in the Middle East and globally to gain four new young classifiers as a result of the first ever PDP to be held in Oman.”

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