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All eyes on Dubai as SailGP edges closer to Middle East debut

by Salam Fiesal 28 Sep 17:57 BST 12-13 November 2022
Dubai Sail Grand Prix starts 12th November 2022 © SailGP

As the sun sets on its event in Cádiz Spain, SailGP, the purpose-driven global racing championship, packs up and heads to the region for the first-ever Dubai Sail Grand Prix Presented by P&O Marinas, which will take place at Mina Rashid, November 12-13.

Having just passed the halfway mark of Season 3, the enthralling on-water racing continues next month in the Middle East to complete the 2022 calendar, where sports fans will see SailGP's revolutionary F50 foiling catamarans sail at high speeds just minutes away from some of Dubai's globally recognized attractions. 2023 will then see the league next head to Singapore, Sydney and Christchurch before the Grand Final in San Francisco in May.

The recent final race at the Spain Sail Grand Prix | Andalucía - Cádiz presented by NEAR, saw the closest-ever finish to a SailGP event, as Quentin Delapierre led the France SailGP Team to a stunning victory by just three seconds over Jimmy Spithill's U.S. team to claim its first event win in the championship.

The high-adrenaline event saw tens of thousands of people packed on the shoreline to witness the action-packed weekend of racing between the SailGP national teams - Australia, Canada, Denmark, France, Great Britain, New Zealand, Spain, Switzerland and the United States - as they continue their battle for the winning trophy.

Jimmy Spithill, United States SailGP Team CEO and driver, spoke of the challenging race in Cadiz: "The team was under real pressure going into the last two events, but we have stuck together and it's given us a lot of belief and a lot of confidence. We are determined to keep this momentum going, and it's great that we are now much closer to the overall pack on the leaderboard, as we tried to take another step forward ahead of Dubai.

"It will be the first SailGP foiling event in the Middle East, which is very exciting for us all."

In SailGP, no race day is the same. As the competition heats up and the teams battle it out on the water for the best performance, both athletes and boats are put to the ultimate test. The final day in Cadiz saw light winds and choppy waters; a combination described by drivers as testing for the F50s foiling boats.

Commenting on the event, driver of the Great Britain SailGP Team, Sir Ben Ainslie, said: "Really frustrating result for the team today and a tough way to finish. I felt like we were sailing reasonably well, but concern over damage to the rudder killed our chances for the podium final, but that's competition. We will try to ensure it's a different result for us as we come back swinging in Dubai."

As all sails are set for Dubai, Australia SailGP Team CEO and driver, Tom Slingsby, said: "We are certainly looking forward to racing in the iconic city of Dubai. I haven't sailed there before myself, but I think the event is going to be amazing and we will then see what the conditions bring."

Tickets are now on sale for the first Dubai Sail Grand Prix - to be held at Mina Rashid in the heart of Old Dubai - on November 12 and 13, 2022, in partnership with P&O Marinas, Dubai Sports Council and Dubai's Department of Economy and Tourism.

Fans should head to SailGP.com/Dubai to get more details and purchase tickets.

Ticket category - Waterfront Access

Watch the high-speed action on the water from less than 50m away from the racecourse. Waterfront Access is situated in an exclusive part of the official spectator area, with big screens and accompanying live race commentary. Guests will have access to the Race Village which contains a food and beverage zone, fan activations, and merchandise stands. Tickets are AED 35 for adults and AED 15 for children.

Ticket category - Waterfront Platinum

For more exclusive access, the Waterfront Platinum environment is undoubtedly the perfect place to be for any sailing enthusiast - while on land! Within the Platinum environment, our VIP guests will enjoy complimentary drinks, premium dining, grandstand seating, large screens and exciting live commentary, taking you through every heart-pounding moment of each race. Live music will commence after racing. Tickets are AED 550 for adults and AED 300 for children.

Ticket category - Team Base Tours

Take part in an exclusive tour and go behind the scenes at SailGP. Through a Team Base Tour, enjoy an exclusive tour of the 'pit lane garages' where athletes and shore teams prepare the high-tech F50 race boats. The tour offers a rare chance to see SailGP's elite athletes and the cutting-edge, wing-sailed boats up close, as the teams prepare for battle at Mina Rashid. Tours are AED 85 for adults and AED 40 for children.

Ticket category - Bring Your Own Boat

Finally, watch the Dubai Sail Grand Prix presented by P&O Marinas, from your own boat, by getting the SailGP VIP flag to get the best vantage spot right on the racecourse perimeter, in the heart of the action. Enjoy exclusive access on both days of racing and access to the live race commentary via VHF. Two-day access is AED 1,000 per boat.

Boats without a flag will be held at least 200m behind the flag-bearing boats.

SAILGP SEASON 3 CHAMPIONSHIP STANDINGS (after six events):

1 // Australia // 50 points
2 // New Zealand // 46 points
3 // France // 41 points
4 // Great Britain // 40 points
5 // Canada // 36 points
6 // Denmark // 36 points
7 // United States // 34 points
8 // Spain // 19 points
9 // Switzerland // 14 points

*United States penalized 4 season points for incident with France
*Switzerland penalized 2 season points for incident with United States

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