The Abu Dhabi Sports Council in cooperation with the Spartan World Foundation has completed preparations for the World Spartan Championship to be held at the Liwa Desert, Mureeb Hill, in the Al Dhafra region from December 2-5. It is the first time that the Championship will be hosted outside the United States of America and is also the first of its kind to be conducted in the Middle East.
The desert oasis of Liwa is expected to welcome thousands of participants ranging from elite athletes to members of the community hoping to excel in the events dedicated to their respective age groups. The World Spartan Championship marks another accomplishment for Abu Dhabi in establishing their position as a hub for major global sporting events.
The organizing committee, in coordination with the concerned authorities, has completed all the final preparations for the upcoming event which will be held in conjunction with the country’s celebrations of the United Arab Emirates’ fiftieth National Day. It will be a special week filled with unique experiences to introduce the local Emirati culture and folklore. The accompanying events include an Emirati food corner and cultural performances as well as sand dune shows, yoga classes, and fireworks to celebrate the National Day.
For his part, HE Aref Al Awani, General Secretary of the Abu Dhabi Sports Council, thanked all the parties involved in organizing the event and the sponsors for the great efforts made to efficiently facilitate the process as befitting of Abu Dhabi’s prestigious position as a focal point for sporting events.
He said: "Hosting the World Spartan Championship is a huge success for Abu Dhabi, especially since the tournament is being held for the first time outside the United States of America and also for the first time in the Middle East, which confirms the confidence of the international sports community in the capabilities of the UAE and the successes it has achieved over many years, earning its global reputation.”
He added: "We expect a large record participation, especially since this new type of sports is characterized by a global interaction of fans in different countries of the world, since the championship tracks, obstacles and barriers will be decorated with desert nature, adding more challenges and increasing the determination of the participants."
He pointed out that the tournament will include three categories: the elite, the teams and a tournament for Spartan juniors, in addition to the community tournaments that will be held on the sidelines of the global event. The latter is an expression of Abu Dhabi’s keen interest in placing community participation at the forefront of sporting events.
The program of the Spartan World Championship includes a number of races, beginning with open trial races of 50 km and 21 km. Participants and followers can spend the first night under the stars in the camps located at the Spartan village in Liwa, and enjoy riding buggies across the sand dunes, sandboarding and recreation. On the stage, children will have an exclusive area that includes many entertaining activities.
The competitions begin on the morning of December 3 with the display of flags of more than 40 participating countries, followed by the World Championship for children in the age group 12-14 years over two miles at 1:00 pm, and for the age group 10-11 years at a distance of one mile at 01:30 pm. The elite men’s competitions run over 21 km across the Liwa Dunes will be held at 3:30 pm, followed by the elite women’s competitions at 4 pm, and the second day’s competitions conclude at sunset with a community race on a 10 km track.
Children aged between 4 and 6 will have the opportunity to tackle a half-mile obstacle course, in which their parents can also run alongside them or encourage them from the side-lines. Those aged between 6 to 11 years old can take part in a one-mile course.
The World Tag Team Championship begins on December 4 at 4.30pm with teams of three selected to represent their country in the 10-mile recognition cycle. Finally, the event will conclude with an award ceremony in the evening for the age group winners and world champion team.