ABU DHABI, 6th May, 2022 (WAM) — The 5th edition of the Dalma Historical Race Festival is set to kick off tomorrow, welcoming history enthusiasts to Abu Dhabi’s enchanting Dalma Island from 7th to 20th May, 2022.
Held under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Ruler’s Representative in Al Dhafra Region, the festival is organised by the Cultural Programmes and Heritage Festivals Committee – Abu Dhabi and the Abu Dhabi Marine Sports Club, in cooperation with Abu Dhabi Sports Council.
Hosted at Abu Dhabi’s Heritage Village over an area of 25,000 square metres, the festival’s agenda comprises a wide range of events and activities for all members of the family, featuring 21 sports and community events, with AED336,000 worth of prizes set to go to winners of the various competitions.
The largest of its kind throughout history and the festival’s flagship event, the 60-foot traditional dhow race, which covers a distance of 80 nautical miles (125km), will feature 3,000 sailors, with a total prize fund of AED25 million.
Moreover, the event will feature a full lineup of exhilarating traditional, and aquatic activities, including the Dalma traditional rowing competition, which is organised by the Emirates Heritage Club in collaboration with the festival’s higher committee, and will feature AED2.3 million worth of prizes, with the top three winners to receive AED130,000, AED100,000 and AED80,000 respectively.
Other competitions include the kingfishing championship, which is open for amateur and professional male and female participants of all nationalities, with prizes totalling AED510,000.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Sultan bin Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Abu Dhabi Marine Sports Club, said that the festival is the pride and joy of all those interested in marine heritage, and is the largest event of its kind. He also expressed his appreciation to Sheikh Hamdan for his kind patronage of the event since its launch, and to the organising committee and teams who put it all together.
For his part, Major General Faris Khalaf Al Mazrouei, Commander-in-Chief of the Abu Dhabi Police and Chairman of the Cultural Programs and Heritage Festivals Committee – Abu Dhabi, said that the event is a celebration of the UAE’s marine heritage and its history of achievements, constitutes an amalgamation of an authentic past, the innovation of the present and visions of the future.
“This festival is a continuation of the efforts initiated by the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan to preserve the UAE’s heritage. It is also an implementation of the directives of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, showcasing their keenness to intensify heritage preservation efforts and projects, and is only possible thanks to the ongoing support of H.H. Sheikh Hamdan of various heritage events and festivals,” he added.
“This festival aims to support community events and Emirati productive families as well as revive traditional marine traditions and give the chance for the new generations to experience and value them while promoting economic development by shining light on Dalma and other Emirati islands in the Al Dhafra region.”