(MENAFN - Muscat Daily) The much-awaited Sailor of the Year Awards (SOYA) by Oman Sail were announced at a glittering function last week at Al Bustan Palace, a Ritz-Carlton Hotel with winners being named in seven categories
The Wave, Muscat (Extreme 40) won in the Outstanding International Race Team category beating five contenders.
Musab al Hadi and Hashim al Rashdi were winners of the Outstanding Male Race Team Performance Award while the Outstanding Female Race Team Performance Award went to Rajaa al Owaisi, Raiya al Habsi and Ibtisam al Salmi.
From three contenders in the Male Coach of the Year category, Mohammed al Araimi emerged the winner.
Nashwa al Kindi was Female Coach of the Year for the second time in a row while Hilal al Zadjali from The Wave, Muscat shore crew won the Technical Support Award. Oman Sail's sailing school at Marina Bandar Rowdha was chosen for the 2014 Sailing School Youth Team title based on four ranking races and an interschool regatta.
The awards function was attended by Sayyid Badr bin Hamad bin Hamood al Busaidi, secretary general in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, H E?Sayyid Hamoud bin Faisal al Busaidi, Minister of Interior, H E Maitha bint Said al Mahrouqi, Undersecretary in the Ministry of Tourism and chairperson of Oman Sail among others.
In a written statement, David Graham, CEO of Oman Sail, said, ''Our aim was always to create and develop a culture of excellence throughout our programme of sailing initiatives from grassroots level to the elite squad competing on the international stage and these awards will help propagate that culture.
''Whether they are sailors, coaches, race officials or active on the technical side, these winners will inspire others, especially the youngsters to work harder and aim higher which will benefit the sultanate in the years to come.''
The awards were independently observed by KPMG.
The panel of judges included Sir Ben Ainslie, winner of four Olympic golds and the America's Cup; Malav Shroff, president of Asian Sailing Federation; Omani professional tennis player Fatma al Nabhani; Taha Sulaiman al Kishry, general secretary of the Oman Olympic Committee and Sheikha Naima al Sabah, chairperson of the GCC Women Sports Committee.
Renaissance Services, Oman LNG, Mercedes-Benz, Rolls-Royce, Thales, BP, Omantel, Khimji Ramdas and Muscat Daily were the sponsors for the event.