Paris, Oman Sail’s Diam 24 team go into the high-
intensity final phase of the Tour Voile with their goal of a podium finish
in the French classic within reach.
After racing around the Channel and Atlantic coasts of France, the
26-strong fleet have arrived in the Mediterranean for six days of back-
to-back racing which will decide the outcome of the uniquely
On the way the Sailing Arabia powered by Oman Sail squad have
recently faced and overcome adversity, with bowman Ali al-Balushi
suffering a hand injury during the coastal race in Barneville-Carteret
which has ended his sailing participation.
With light winds also influencing several race results, not least a
dramatic single-race stadium shootout at the most recent event in
Baden-Golfe Du Morbihan, the team are aiming to bounce back in the
final three events.
The Sailing Arabia powered by Oman Sail squad of skipper Thierry
Douillard, Abdulrahaman al-Mashari, helmsman Stevie Morrison and
French match race ace Mathieu Richard are in fifth place on the
leaderboard with 396 points, just two behind the fourth place Team
Reseau Ixio and only four from third placed Lorina Mojito Golfe du
We are still right there in it, and we are close to where we would like
to be and we will work very hard to get there, said Morrison while
travelling to the first Mediterranean venue in Gruissan.
It is frustrating as there have been a lot of missed opportunities with
the wind starting and stopping, and maybe our card hasn’t fallen the
right way up quite yet. But there are six days to go and we still feel very
The British Olympian added: It was unfortunate in Barneville where
Ali had his accident, but he did an amazing job in carrying on for two
and a half hours with what turned out to be two badly broken fingers �
he really fought for the team.
It is a strain on the team to lose one of your bowmen and it means
Abdulrahman is sailing every day now, so it is a big load on him. The
spirit is good though and we are fighting hard for Ali and he will be
staying with us for the rest of the event. He has been training with us
for a year, and he is a character and a vital part of our team, so he will
come with us all the way.
Meanwhile, Oman Sail’s Diam 24 development squad of Sami al-
Shukaili, Yasser al-Rhabi and Haitham al-Wahaibi, led by skipper
Pierre Le Clainche, are in an impressive 12th place overall, having
posted six top-10 finishes in the nine coastal races and stadium racing
sessions held so far.
Following two days of racing in Gruissan on July 17 and 18, the Tour
Voile will move on to Hyeres and then the finale in Nice on the 21 and
22 of July.
Source: Oman News Agency