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Category: ‘Sport’

20th Anniversary Laureus World Sports Awards

Lewis Hamilton And Lionel Messi Share Laureus Sportsman Award In First Ever Tie – A Moment Of History BERLIN, February 17, 2020 – In a moment of sporting history, the greatest Formula One driver of his generation Lewis Hamilton and Lionel Messi, the world’s greatest footballer, were declared joint winners of the prestigious Laureus World […] Read more

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NEOM Showcases Stunning Coastline With Saudi Arabia’s First Ever International Beach Sport Tournaments

NEOM SHOWCASES STUNNING COASTLINE WITH SAUDI ARABIA’S FIRST EVER INTERNATIONAL BEACH SPORTS TOURNAMENTS

            • IWWF NEOM Wakeboard Cup
            • FIFA-endorsed Beach Soccer Cup Tournament (4 Day International)
            • Beach Rugby Exhibition Matches
            • Beach Tennis Invitation Event

NEOM, Saudi Arabia – NEOM’s ambition to turn the gigaproject into a world sports powerhouse took a leap forward this week with the hosting of its first officially-endorsed international events – the first of their kind to take place in the new destination, which is being developed in the North-Western corner of Saudi Arabia along the borders of Egypt and Jordan.

Athletes from 16 nations have taken to the crystal-clear waters of the pristine beaches of Gayal in NEOM, situated on the Gulf of Aqaba, to compete in the IWWF NEOM Wakeboard Event.

The off-shore action was but one part of a sporting spectacular that also included a FIFA-endorsed Beach Soccer Cup tournament. The four-day international event included teams from Saudi Arabia, China, Egypt, England, Oman and the UAE.

Oman won in style in a thrilling final that saw them beat Egypt 5-4 after extra time.

Other events included exhibition Beach Rugby matches with players from Saudi Arabia and an all-female set of match officials, plus a Beach Tennis invitation event starring male and female players from the region.

NEOM has been described as ‘the world’s most ambitious project’ – a land of the future created to empower global talents and maximise human health and potential. Sport is an integral part of the NEOM philosophy, both at the elite level and at grass roots.

NEOM CEO Nadhmi Al-Nasr said “As we build the land of the future, we see sports as an integral part of the NEOM offering, leveraging our unique pristine land to host international sporting events both for professional and everyday athletes, as well as those who choose to visit and live in NEOM. Sport plays a leading role in the realisation of our dream to inspire us all to live healthier lifestyles.”

“It’s great testimony to the spirit of NEOM that we are hosting a World Cup and International Beach Soccer Tournament at such an early stage in our development,” said Jason Harborow, head of NEOM’s Future of Sport sector. “As we evolve, Beach Sports will be an important part of our offering and major events will be high on the agenda.”

NEOM’s Beach Sports events follow the wildly successful Wing Suit & Climbing Challenge in April, which showcased NEOM’s incredible mountains to over 300 million people in 105 countries around the globe.

In the meantime, further world-class events are planned to reinforce NEOM’s reputation as the world’s most exciting and visually spectacular sporting destination.

 

About NEOM:

NEOM is the flagship project of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030.

A vast destination designed to welcome and celebrate the world’s athletes, sports enthusiasts and thrill seekers. NEOM was announced to the public on October 24, 2017, by His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Crown Prince, Deputy Prime Minister and Chairman of the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia (PIF).

The name “NEOM” is derived from two words. The first three letters form the Ancient Greek prefix neo- meaning “new”.

The fourth letter is from the abbreviation of Mostaqbal (Arabic: مستقبل), an Arabic word meaning “future”.

As the name suggests, it will be the land of the future where the best ideas, most promising start-ups, established companies, future industries and the best talents are joined to create solutions for the key challenges facing humanity.

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International and Saudi Athletes Launch Extreme Sports at NEOM

NEOM, Saudi Arabia – International athletes joined their Saudi counterparts during the weekend at an extreme sports extravaganza held to bring NEOM, the world’s most ambitious project, located in the Northwest of Saudi Arabia, into the global spotlight.

Bouldering world champion Juliane Wurm and Saudi female rock-climbing star Yasmin Gahtani topped the bill to kick off a one-day event of rock-climbing, wingsuiting and BASE jumping conceived to showcase the pristine beauty of NEOM with its wilderness, deserts, mountains, valleys, islands, coast and unique coral reefs

Development of the first phase of NEOM, which has a total area of 26,500 km2, will begin in weeks. NEOM Bay, which will be the first urban area in NEOM, will include a wide range of resorts and tourist attractions. NEOM is the flagship project of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030, and CEO Nadhmi Al-Nasr said the choice of an extreme sports event to bring global attention to what has been described as “the world’s most ambitious project” was especially appropriate.

“NEOM is all about the unusual and the unexpected. NEOM is futuristic, risky and daring and it’s more than a dream: it’s a plan to enhance how we work and live.” the CEO added.

“The reason we chose extreme adventure sports at the first event in NEOM is because it’s a beautiful environment,” explained Jason Harborow, Head of NEOM’s Future of Sport sector. “Sport is right at the center of what we want to achieve at NEOM, and that means sport for all: male, female, children and athletes with disabilities. NEOM will be for everybody.”

Lead climber Yasmin Gahtani, Managing Director of the Saudi Climbing and Hiking Federation, said that she was thrilled to participate in an event which encapsulates NEOM’s ethos of finding, empowering and encouraging talented individuals.

“Being a woman, I’m very honored to be here and very happy to have NEOM’s support,” she said, adding that rock climbing in Saudi Arabia used to be seen very much as a male-dominated sport but her participation at this event will help to change that perception.

It was German-born climber Juliane Wurm’s first visit to Saudi Arabia. “There’s huge potential here,” she said. “I’m surprised and excited to see how this is going to evolve.”

Head Wingsuit Pilot Sam Hardy, British medalist at the World Wingsuit League, was equally thrilled. “I can 100% see NEOM being the place for extreme sports whether it is climbing, skydiving or kite surfing. The landscape, the mountains, the sand areas and the ocean are like nothing I have seen before. That’s what makes NEOM special and unique.”

 

About NEOM

NEOM is the flagship project of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030.

A vast destination designed to welcome and celebrate the world’s athletes, sports enthusiasts and thrill seekers. NEOM was announced to the public on October 24, 2017, by His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Crown Prince, Deputy Prime Minister and Chairman of the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia (PIF).

The name “NEOM” is derived from two words. The first three letters form the Ancient Greek prefix neo- meaning “new”.

The fourth letter is from the abbreviation of Mostaqbal (Arabic: مستقبل), an Arabic word meaning “future”.

As the name suggests, it will be the land of the future where the best ideas, most promising start-ups, established companies, future industries and the best talents are joined to create solutions for the key challenges facing humanity.

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Bocelli Captivates Hearts with His Majestic Voice in Winter at Tantora Festival

  • Stunning Festival of Night-Time Hot Air Ballooning 
  • Bocelli Captivates Hearts with His Majestic Voice in Winter at Tantora Festival
  • Blakeridge Indigo Wins $4M USD 120 km Endurance Horse Race

Story 1: Hot Air Balloon Festival 

Al-Ula, Saudi Arabia – February 1st-9th, 2019: A Stunning Festival of Night-time Hot Air Ballooning – sixty hot air balloons took to the sky in the region’s first Hot Air Balloon Festival offering rides to festival goers and locals alike.

Each night the balloons light up the night skies with a daily ‘glow show’.

Story 2: Andrea Bocelli’s Desert Canyon Performance

Al-Ula, Saudi Arabia – February 2, 2019:On Friday, world-renowned opera singer Andrea Bocelli presented a grand artistic performance at Maraya Concert Hall as part of Winter at Tantora Festival, which was recently launched by the Royal Commission for Al-Ula. The Festival features a variety of heritage, cultural and artistic events inspired by the heritage of Al-Ula, which dates back thousands of years. It attracted a wide audience from different regions of the Kingdom and beyond.

In the inspiring concert, Bocelli sang some of his most famous songs, including “Overture”, “La donna è mobile”, “Di quella pira, Waltz” and “Donna non vidi mai”

As one of the most famous operatic vocalists of all time, Andrea Bocelli is an opera singer, songwriter and international Italian musician, credited with restoring classical music to the throne of world music lists. Born on September 22, 1958 in Lajatico, Italy, Bocelli showed great interest in music at an early age and began learning piano at the age of six. Later, he learned to play the flute and the saxophone.

“This is my first time to perform in Saudi Arabia and I am very pleased with the great reception and hospitality I received from the organizers and the wonderful audience here,” said Bocelli. “AlUla is a great surprise, it is a beautiful natural destination and it has been an honor to sing in such majestic surrounds.”

Described as having the most beautiful voice in the world, Bocelli presented a concert that reflected the splendor of his majestic voice, which inspired millions around the world. Soon after his birth, Bocelli was diagnosed with congenital glaucoma, which made him partially blind. He then lost his vision completely at the age 12, after he was hit on the head during a game of football. He participated in several musical competitions and recorded his first album in 1994 in Italy. He made great success in Europe shortly after his album “Bocelli” was released. In addition, he participated in collective and cooperative works with a number of international artists and musicians, and released many albums. Bocelli was awarded the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic. He received Grammy nominations for Best New Artist in 1999, for Best Sound Performance for Sogno in 2000, and for best vocal collaboration for The Prayer.

The Maraya Concert Hall:

Maraya – mirror in Arabic – is a purpose-built concert hall and an extension of the environment around it in design and beauty. It includes a comprehensive stage equipped with the latest audio and lighting technology, as well as animated rear blinds that present to the audience the beauty of the mountains of Al-Ula. The latest digital projection technology has been used to describe a historical and visual story on the same stage.

Maraya can accommodate up to 500 guests. It includes a private VIP area, a gallery for world-class artists, such as Dutch artist Vincent Van Gogh, a reception area and artists rooms. Architect Massimo Fogliati, and the Italian designer Florian Buji of Geo Forma Studio designed the building that takes the shape of a huge cube covered with mirrors from its four sides to reflect the beauty of surrounding nature and the curiosity of man throughout history to explore the dazzling landscapes. Maraya will not rival the beauty of Al-Ula, but rather will reflect and highlight it while offering a unique experience for guests to unite with the pristine environment around them.

On weekends, Maraya Concert Hall will host concerts by world-renowned artists who made their mark in the field of Arab and international art. The first night of the Festival will feature a concert by the Arab artist Mohamed Abdo. The following concerts will include the Arab artist Majida El Roumi, the Arab artist Um Kulthum via hologram, the musician Omar Khairat, the Italian singer Andrea Bocelli, the Greek composer Yanni, the French violinist Renauld Capuçon and the Chinese pianist Lang Lang. They will dazzle the audience with their impressive performance and artistic sense.

Story 3: Blakeridge Indigo Wins $4M USD 120 km Endurance Horse Race

AlUla, Saudi Arabia – 27 Jumada AlAwal 1440 AH, corresponding to 2 February 2019: Held under the patronage of his Royal Highness Prince Muhammad Bin Salman Bin Abdulaziz, Crown Prince, Chairman of the Royal Commission for AlUla, His Royal Highness Prince Faisal bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Governor of Medinah AlMunawarah Province, awarded the winners of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Endurance Cup, which concluded today in Fursan village in AlUla with the presence of His Highness Prince Bader bin Abdullah bin Farhan Al Saud, the governor of the Royal Commission for AlUla.

The race was also attended by the Chairman of the Saudi Equestrian Federation, his Royal Highness Prince Abdallah bin Fahd bin Abdallah and Engineer Amr AlMadani, CEO of the Royal Commission for AlUla, as part of the Commission’s ongoing efforts to strengthen AlUla’s position as an exceptional tourist destination boasting a unique heritage rich in arts, culture and sports.

At the end of the race, his Royal Highness Prince Faisal bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Governor of Madinah AlMunawarah Province presented the cup to the owner of Blakeridge Indigo who completed the race in 4 hours 25 minutes 43 seconds, in the presence of His Highness Prince Bader bin Abdullah bin Farhan Al Saud, the Governor of the Royal Commission for AlUla and His Highness Prince Abdallah bin Fahd bin Abdallah, Chairman of the Saudi Equestrian Federation. His Royal Highness Prince Faisal lauded the efforts of the Royal Commission for AlUla and the Saudi Equestrian Federation teams as well as the Emirates Equestrian Federation for the organization of the event and the great support they provided to the participants.

His Highness Prince Bader bin Abdullah bin Farhan Al Saud, the Governor of the Royal Commission for AlUla, said: “The history of AlUla bears a lot of inscriptions that highlight the population’s interest in Arabian horses, which makes AlUla the perfect location for the launch of the prestigious Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Endurance Cup, the biggest prize of its kind in the world, with the full support and close supervision from His Royal Highness Prince Mohammad bin Salman, Crown Prince and Chairman of the Royal Commission for AlUla. We are happy to see the huge efforts of the residents of AlUla as we seek to provide more job opportunities to its youth through the organization of different events and activities.” The Governor of the Royal Commission for AlUla congratulated the competitors and Salem Hamad AlKutbi from M7 Endurance stables on his win.

The race was part of the Winter at Tantora festival in AlUla held in partnership with the Saudi Equestrian Federation and the Emirati Equestrian Federation to highlight the heritage of AlUla that goes back thousands of years.

The FEI sanctioned, two-star classification race covered 120 km over four loops through the magnificent mountains of AlUla, a technical course between desert and mountains. The race saw the participation of 234 riders from 12 countries around the world including Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Jordan, Egypt, Sudan, Spain, Italy, France and Uruguay.

The riders competed for a prize pot of 15 million SAR (4m USD).

Horse Wameed from M7 Endurance stables came in 2nd place who completed the race in 4 hours 25 minutes 43 seconds, and horse Razorback Mechano from MRM stables came in the 3rd place who completed the race in 4 hours 25 minutes 44 seconds.

Through Winter at Tantora, The Royal Commission for AlUla aims to promote the position and archaeological history of the city as an international tourist destination, and to eventually attract more investments and provide job opportunities to the young generation in AlUla.

Shows:

00:10 – Pre-dawn 60 hot air balloons are being filled and readied on the first day of the AlUla Hot Air Balloon Festival

00:18 – Aerial shot of the balloons surrounded by the beautiful natural landscape of AlUla as they start to take flight

00:31 – Sweeping shot of the balloons, some in flight some taking off

00:36 – Firing the balloons

00:41 – Wide shot of the balloons over AlUla in the early morning light

01:18 – Night shots as the balloons are readied for the nightly ‘glow show’

01:28 – The glow show

01:39 – Andrea Bocelli in “Al Maraya” concert hall, he wore a traditional Saudi headdress – a ‘shemagh’ for the final encore

01:50 – Sweeping shots of the 200 person choir and orchestra

02:30 – Close up of Andrea Bocelli, a smile across his face

03:20 – Andrea Bocelli second song

04:35 – Andrea waltzes on stage

04:53 – The start line at the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Endurance race, 7AM

04:57 – A rider cooling off his horse as he enters the first vet check

05:12 – Arabian horses are the horse of choice for Endurance racing due to their stamina and speed

05:22 – Rider leaves the vet gate for Loop 2 of the race

05:47 – One of the race vets checking the heart rate of the horse as vet check. Part of the skill of endurance racing is the balance between the horse’s condition and speed

06:12 – Horse galloping through the AlUla valley

06:20 – The three trophies and medals. The prize money for the race stood at $4m USD

06:27 – Slow motion of horses galloping through the desert landscape

06:43 – His Royal Highness Prince Faisal bun Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Governor of Madinah walking with Prince Badr Bin Farhan Al Saud, Governor of the Royal Commission for AlUla

06:48 – Prize giving, Shiekh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai accepts the first-place award. His son, Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai accepted the second-place award.

07:00 – Ends.

Other:

Winter at Tantora Festival is held in Al-Ula, Saudi Arabia from December 20, 2018 to February 23, 2019. It includes heritage, cultural and artistic activities inspired by the heritage of Al-Ula, the home of important heritage sites in the north of the Arabian Peninsula and is the meeting point of many civilizations throughout the ages. Every weekend, the Festival will host artistic events and concerts by world-renowned artists who made their mark in the field of Arab and international art.

For more information, and to ensure attendance at concerts and participation in various events, please book your tickets today at www.winterattantora.com

Felipe Massa Drives Gen2 Formula E Car In Saudi Arabia

Designed to be used for the next three seasons, the car will make its competitive debut in the 2018/19 season of the series. 

With almost double the energy storage capacity and double the range of the current car, the Gen2 will enable the teams and drivers to complete a full race at higher speeds, without making a mid-race car swap. 

With all that, the Gen2 car is clear proof of the advancements in battery and electric motor technology achieved in the space of only four years, which will eventually make its way into everyday electric road cars.

Formula E returns with teams using the all-new Gen2 car in December, with the sport making its Middle East debut in Saudi Arabia.

To follow the latest news and information, visit – www.FIAFormulaE.com

Shows:

Saudi Arabia Sizzle Reel with Felipe Massa

Photos of new Gen2 Team Livery

Other: None

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SailGP Global Racing League Unveiled At Spectacular London Launch

  • SailGP setting out to redefine sailing with thrilling new fan-centric grand prix racing circuit
  • International league to feature six national teams, visiting five iconic, inshore venues starting with Sydney in February 2019
  • Teams will race identical wingsailed F50s – supercharged catamarans capable of breaking the 50-knot barrier
  • Season culminates with single, $1 million match-race final between top two teams

Story: LONDON SailGP today set out to redefine sailing with the launch of its new global racing league: five grand prix events featuring six national teams on identical wingsailed F50s – the world’s fastest, most technologically advanced catamarans. Spearheaded by Larry Ellison and Sir Russell Coutts, in season one, SailGP will bring intensely competitive, high-speed inshore racing to fans in Sydney; San Francisco; New York; Cowes, U.K.; and Marseille, France, as world-class crews compete for the championship trophy and a $1 million prize.

Kicking off in February 2019, SailGP’s inaugural season will feature teams representing six countries – Australia, China, France, Great Britain, Japan and the United States. Each five-person crew will race on identical 50-foot foiling catamarans. A new boat class, the F50 is a redesigned, supercharged incarnation of the exceptional AC50 used for the 35th America’s Cup last year. Twelve months in development at the hands of pioneering technicians and engineers at Core Builders Composites in New Zealand, the F50s are expected to break the 50-knot (60mph/100kph) barrier.

“SailGP is the evolution of sailing,” said Ellison, SailGP founder. “With equally incredible technology across our one-design fleet, we expect to see thrillingly close and competitive racing amongst national teams. And, with a modern, consistent format, SailGP will provide a new opportunity for talented sailors who want to race for their countries.”

“SailGP distills all of the most successful, exciting and relevant elements of high-performance, professional racing, while adding the extra edge that comes with nation-versus-nation competition,” said Coutts, SailGP CEO. “We are aiming to be pioneers of new technologies, boat design, commercial partnerships and global audience engagement. But with every crew on the same groundbreaking F50 catamaran, this isn’t a tech arms race, rather the ultimate test to establish the best sailing team in advanced foiling catamarans.”

Sanctioned by World Sailing, each grand prix will comprise two competition days with five fleet races, culminating in a final match race between the two leaders. After SailGP’s Sydney inauguration in February (15-16), the league moves on to San Francisco in May (4-5), New York in June (21-22), and Cowes in August (10-11), before the Marseille final in September (20-22), which features a winner-takes-all, $1 million championship match race between the season’s top two teams to conclude three days of racing.

“World Sailing is thrilled to be working with SailGP to bring a new, exciting and fan-friendly elite racing league to life,” said World Sailing CEO Andy Hunt. “SailGP is an ambitious project that is spearheaded by an incredible forward-thinking leadership team. We’re excited about SailGP’s commitment to innovate and advance the sport forward and by working in partnership, we will aim to inspire millions more people to fall in love with sailing.”

SailGP was created by Ellison and Coutts, who have been instrumental in the commercial development of competitive sailing. The innovative new professional sailing league – featuring an ongoing calendar of premium global racing among national teams in the world’s most advanced catamarans – will engage the next generation of fans and create a pathway for future sailors. SailGP will be a commercially driven sports property, eventually maturing to a franchise model. 

Renowned luxury house Louis Vuitton, which partners with the world’s biggest sporting events and packs the most legendary trophies; Oracle, industry-leading global provider of enterprise cloud computing; and Land Rover, the world’s leading manufacturer of premium all-wheel-drive vehicles, join SailGP as founding partners. Additional details and sponsors will be announced at a future date.

With a primary goal of growing global viewership and broadening its fanbase, SailGP’s broadcast plans focus on comprehensive live coverage complemented by centrally produced highlight programs, and cutting-edge screen applications and services. Whisper Films has been appointed as the league’s host broadcast production partner and will play a key role in delivering a personality-driven broadcast utilizing patented and leading-edge immersive media technologies, while Talisman Sports and Media is handling global media rights distribution.

The Great Britain SailGP Team was also introduced to home fans during the London launch. Skippered by Rio 2016 Olympian and world champion Dylan Fletcher, Great Britain’s vastly experienced crew includes Olympic bronze medalist Chris Draper as team CEO and wing trimmer, Olympic silver medalist Stuart Bithell as flight controller, and Olympic champion rower Matt Gotrel and Extreme Sailing Series winner Richard Mason as grinders.

“The concept of SailGP immediately excited me,” said Great Britain helmsman Dylan Fletcher. “This league allows us to compete with and against the best, and to challenge ourselves in every way possible while sailing the world’s fastest catamarans. We have the opportunity to push the limits of our sport, and this is a very proud chapter in my career. What Larry and Russell have created is truly unique, and I am confident it will capture the attention of audiences around the world.”

The launch event took place at Tower Bridge in London. Following the formal program hosted by ITV’s Ben Shephard and featuring addresses by Ellison, Coutts, Hunt and members of the Great Britain SailGP Team, a visual and sensory display on the Thames’ South Bank provided a first look at what SailGP will bring to audiences around the world.

Shows:

00:00:01:00 – 00:01:36:16

Launch Event VT

Sir Russell Coutts, SailGP CEO

Dylan Fletcher, Great Britain SailGP Team Helmsman

00:01:37:07 – 00:02:45:24

Dylan Fletcher – Great Britain SailGP Team Helmsmen

00:02:45:24 – 00:04:22:17

Sir Russell Coutts – SailGP CEO

00:04:22:18 – 00:05:19:08

Andy Hunt – World Sailing CEO

00:05:19:09 – 00:07:00:00

B-Roll & Event GVS

Other: ABOUT SAILGP

SailGP is sailing redefined. Established in 2018 and headquartered in London and San Francisco, SailGP is an annual, global sports league featuring bold, cutting-edge technology and awe-inspiring athleticism. The fan-centric, inshore racing takes place in some of the most iconic harbors around the globe and culminates with a $1 million winner-takes-all match race. Rival national teams from Australia, China, France, Great Britain, Japan and the United States battle it out in identical supercharged F50 catamarans, engineered for intense racing at electrifying speeds exceeding 50 knots (nearly 60 mph/100 kph). Visit SailGP.com for more information.

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Oct, 04, 2018

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