31 Oct 2011

UAE sailor loving life aboard Azzam

8:23 am on 31 October 2011

By far the most enthusiastic celebration of Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing's crushing victory in yesterday's opening stage of the Volvo Ocean Race came from 23-year-old crew member Adil Khalid.

As the sleek black yacht Azzam made its way back to port in Spain's Alicante after blowing away its five rivals, Khalid energetically waved a huge United Arab Emirates (UAE) flag before spraying champagne off the side of the boat as he beamed at the cameras.

The first sailor from UAE to take part in the Olympic Games in 2008, Khalid beat around 120 other applicants to win a place on Azzam, which means "determined", and is the first Emirati to compete in the eight-month, 39,000 nautical mile Volvo Ocean Race.