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Red Bull Air Race: the results.

Paul Bonhomme

British winner Paul Bonhomme (photo © Red Bull Air Race)

As I mentioned in a previous post, the Red Bull Air Race World Championship started its 2014 journey in Abu Dhabi, and the daredevils that entertained us pirouetting over our beloved Corniche are now off to Croatia.
Out of the 12 contestants, British pilot Paul Bonhomme has been crowned the winner of this first race, completing the course in only 56.439 seconds! Hannes Arch from Austria and Pete McLeod from Canada finished in second and third place.
I look forward to next year for another thrilling day on the beach!

The winners (Photo: © Red Bull Air Race)

(Photo: © Red Bull Air Race)

Click HERE to read more about SPORTS in Abu Dhabi.

Dhow race on the Corniche – tomorrow 8th March

(Photo: © Abu Dhabi Sailing and Yacht Club)

I must admit it: I could not find many information about this event, apart from the fact that it is called Arzanah Dhow Sailing Race 60FT, (some photos of a previous event are on Facebook), that it is happening from 2pm to 5pm on the Abu Dhabi Corniche tomorrow, Saturday 8th of March, and that is organised by the Abu Dhabi sailing and yacht club.
I called them on 02 658 3333 and they confirmed that the race is on, but that’s all I know!

The tradition of dhow races, as I wrote in a previous post, is still thriving: these boats originally were used as trading vessels, and as an essential part of the pearl-diving industry, but today they are employed for racing. The racing season starts in September, with 12-man teams of UAE nationals competing in a tournament spread over nine months. The final and most prestigious race of the season is from Sir Bu Na’air Island to Dubai, a distance of 54 nautical miles, over a route taken by the early pearling dhows at a time when each captain raced to be the first back to port, and perhaps get the best price for his pearls.

Dhow is not an Arabic word but was adapted by the British from the Persian word dawh, meaning sailing vessel.
The dhow is distinguished from other boats by its triangular sail, known as lateen. Teak is still the mandatory timber, though nowadays is sometimes supplemented by fibreglass and steel framework.
The wood may be varnished yet not painted, in deference to the tradition of leaving the hull above the waterline untreated and painting the part below with lime, as a deterrent to barnacles and other growth.

I guess the best thing is to turn up on the beach and see what happens there, and I look forward to it!

Click HERE to read more about SPORTS in Abu Dhabi.

Red Bull Air Race – 28Feb / 1March

(Photo: © Red Bull Air Race/C.J. Wilson)

I am getting ready for blissful neck pain, as the Red Bull Air Race Championship arrives to Abu Dhabi!

This world championships starts in Abu Dhabi and continues in other 7 cities, with races held from February to November.
Competitors fly individually through the obstacle course, and the top nine fastest pilots earn points: at the end of the whole championship, the person with the most points is crowned the winner. Easier said than done!
Usually this race is over 2 days, the first of qualifications and the second of knock-out finals.

This weekend, the 28th February and 1st of March, the sky over our beloved Corniche will be full of champions of the air, keen to showcase their acrobatic prowess.
Some of the best daredevils in the world will use the fastest, most agile and lightweight racing planes, trying to navigate a low-level aerial track made up of 25-metres-high air-filled pylons. Average speed is usually up to 370 Km/h!
Flying through the racecourse requires agility and incredible pilot precision, as the course has high-G turns and challenging corners, making for an amazing show to watch from the ground.

Apart from the flying acrobatics, another highlight of the weekend will also be the concert on February 28th, which will feature Arab popstar Nancy Ajram (whose hits include Akhasmak Ah and Aah W Noss) and Lebanese songwriter Ramy Ayach (whose hits include Khallini Maak and Ya Msahar Heini), supported by Egyptian pop rockers Wust El Balad (whose hits include Qol Lelmaleha and Arabeily2 ).

Tickets are available in Virgin megastores around the city, in special-made booths on the Corniche, and on the Redbull Air Race official website.
The concert will be free to all those who already have a ticket for the Red Bull Air Race, or can be purchased separately for 150 AED.

Feb 28:
1PM – 6PM – Challengers Race and Masters Qualifying
8PM – 12AM  – Concert (Doors open at 6PM)
Mar 1:
1PM- 6PM – Masters Race

Click HERE to read more about SPORT or HERE to read more about MUSIC, in Abu Dhabi.

Havana Cafe – Lebanese restaurant


Starter platter with falafel, salad, bread and hummus.

Where: opposite Marina Mall, on the Corniche.
Tel: 02 6810044

This quaint eatery does not seem to have any website, or social media, despite being quite big, with a very spacious outdoor seating area, and quite busy and popular, with locals and expats alike.

We ended up here one day after shopping at Marina Mall, looking for something casual and easy.

Being a sunny day (as usual) the outdoor area was packed with people, many of them group of friends or families, but as some were smoking hookas, we preferred to seat inside.

The décor is simple, and reminded me of some towns on the seaside in Italy, with big counters full of delicious-looking cakes and kids running to the bar to get ice lollies.

The menu is Lebanese, with all what you would expect from this type of cuisine: lots of hummus, halloumi, garlic paste, but also fries, salads and more: we were really happy with our food.

Everything was very tasty and surpassed our expectations. We had planned to leave room for one of their gorgeous-looking cakes, but we were so stuffed after a generous starter and a delicious main that we did not manage to do so.

This cafe seems a lovely place where to go and relax on a day out, especially because it is on the Corniche and with a lovely view on the water. It has an authentic feel and simple but tasty food. Staff were friendly and the service was attentive, so we will make sure to go back to try their cakes!


More hummus and garlic paste.


Halloumi sandwich


A sort of Lebanese quesadilla with beef.


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