Tony Martin of Germany winning the 2013 UCI Road World Championships time trial in Florence, Italy. Bryn Lennon / Getty Images
Tony Martin of Germany winning the 2013 UCI Road World Championships time trial in Florence, Italy. Bryn Lennon / Getty Images

Quick Step targeting fast start in opening stage of Dubai Tour



DUBAI // Tony Martin, the reigning, three-time world time trial champion, will start as favourite to win the opening stage of the inaugural Dubai Tour on Wednesday afternoon as the four-day International Cycling Union (UCI) Asia Tour event gets cracking with a 10-kilometre race against the clock.

The 28-year-old German said he believes his performance in the time trials today will be the key to his Omega Pharma-Quick Step team’s chances, with stars such as Alessandro Petacchi and Mark Renshaw to lead out Mark Cavendish in the three following sprint stages.

“It’s all about the start,” Martin said. “The time trial will be a big key to success, so you really need to make a good time. I am really looking forward to the time trial and hope for a good result. I also have some good friends as my co-riders, so I am really excited about this race.”

If Martin can get the Belgian outfit off to a winning start, Cavendish said he is confident his team have the strength to take the next three stages and overall victory.

“The race starts with a time trial and hopefully Omega Pharma-Quick Step will get off to a good start,” said the Briton, who was named the Tour de France’s best sprinter of all time by French newspaper L’Equipe in 2012.

“The three stages should end in sprints after that. We’ll be targeting all the stages here and the overall. We have obviously got myself for the sprints, then we have got Alessandro Petacchi. And with Tony Martin and Mark Renshaw, we have got a very, very strong team and we are looking forward to see what we can do. We’re motivated.”

Team Omega-Pharma Quick Step, however, will not have it easy with some of the sport’s biggest names in the fray.

There is Fabian Cancellara (Trek Factory Racing), a four-time world time trial champion and 2008 Olympic gold medal winner, and the reigning World Road Race champion Rui Costa (Lampre-Merida). Joaquim Rodriguez (Team Katusha), the 2013 UCI World Tour ranking topper, is here, and so are Peter Sagan (Cannondale), winner of the 2013 Tour de France Green Jersey points standing, and Marcel Kittel (Giant-Shimano), who ended Cavendish’s four-year winning streak on the final stage of the Tour de France last year.

Cancellara, who is making his debut for Trek Factory Racing this week, is one of the strong favourites for overall success, but the 32-year-old Swiss played down his chances on Tuesday.

“I have no ambitions at all,” said Cancellara, who missed three weeks of training in December due to illness and then had a brush against a car while training at home in Switzerland. “I lost a lot there, but I’m healthy now, we’ll see how it goes.

“I am looking forward to race with my new team and have four good days.”

German Kittel, winner of four stages at last year’s Tour de France, sounded more confident about his chances.

“Things have changed for myself and the team, but to put extra pressure on myself would not be smart because we can be confident with my boys around me,” he said. “They will always help me. So if we just take it easy, I think it will be good. I am very confident with the team I have out here.”

Vincenzo Nibali (Astana Pro Team), winner of the 2013 Giro d’Italia, is here as well, but with his wife, Rachele, at home expecting their first child, the 29-year-old Italian could be forgiven if he is a little distracted.

“When I am racing, I am always concentrating,” he said. “And there is always a telephone around to get news from home.”

arizvi@thenational.ae

Results

3pm: Maiden Dh165,000 (Dirt) 1,400m, Winner: Lancienegaboulevard, Adrie de Vries (jockey), Fawzi Nass (trainer).

3.35pm: Maiden Dh165,000 (Turf) 1,600m, Winner: Al Mukhtar Star, Adrie de Vries, Fawzi Nass.

4.10pm: Handicap Dh165,000 (D) 2,000m, Winner: Gundogdu, Xavier Ziani, Salem bin Ghadayer.

4.45pm: Handicap Dh185,000 (T) 1,200m, Winner: Speedy Move, Sean Kirrane, Satish Seemar.

5.20pm: Handicap Dh185,000 (D) 1,600m, Winner: Moqarrar, Dane O’Neill, Erwan Charpy.

5.55pm: Handicap Dh175,000 (T) 1,800m, Winner: Dolman, Richard Mullen, Satish Seemar.

The specs

Engine: 3.9-litre twin-turbo V8
Power: 620hp from 5,750-7,500rpm
Torque: 760Nm from 3,000-5,750rpm
Transmission: Eight-speed dual-clutch auto
On sale: Now
Price: From Dh1.05 million ($286,000)

The bio

Date of Birth: April 25, 1993
Place of Birth: Dubai, UAE
Marital Status: Single
School: Al Sufouh in Jumeirah, Dubai
University: Emirates Airline National Cadet Programme and Hamdan University
Job Title: Pilot, First Officer
Number of hours flying in a Boeing 777: 1,200
Number of flights: Approximately 300
Hobbies: Exercising
Nicest destination: Milan, New Zealand, Seattle for shopping
Least nice destination: Kabul, but someone has to do it. It’s not scary but at least you can tick the box that you’ve been
Favourite place to visit: Dubai, there’s no place like home

The schedule

December 5 - 23: Shooting competition, Al Dhafra Shooting Club

December 9 - 24: Handicrafts competition, from 4pm until 10pm, Heritage Souq

December 11 - 20: Dates competition, from 4pm

December 12 - 20: Sour milk competition

December 13: Falcon beauty competition

December 14 and 20: Saluki races

December 15: Arabian horse races, from 4pm

December 16 - 19: Falconry competition

December 18: Camel milk competition, from 7.30 - 9.30 am

December 20 and 21: Sheep beauty competition, from 10am

December 22: The best herd of 30 camels

Dengue fever symptoms
  • High fever
  • Intense pain behind your eyes
  • Severe headache
  • Muscle and joint pains
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Swollen glands
  • Rash

If symptoms occur, they usually last for two-seven days

A QUIET PLACE

Starring: Lupita Nyong'o, Joseph Quinn, Djimon Hounsou

Director: Michael Sarnoski

Rating: 4/5

Mercer, the investment consulting arm of US services company Marsh & McLennan, expects its wealth division to at least double its assets under management (AUM) in the Middle East as wealth in the region continues to grow despite economic headwinds, a company official said.

Mercer Wealth, which globally has $160 billion in AUM, plans to boost its AUM in the region to $2-$3bn in the next 2-3 years from the present $1bn, said Yasir AbuShaban, a Dubai-based principal with Mercer Wealth.

Within the next two to three years, we are looking at reaching $2 to $3 billion as a conservative estimate and we do see an opportunity to do so,” said Mr AbuShaban.

Mercer does not directly make investments, but allocates clients’ money they have discretion to, to professional asset managers. They also provide advice to clients.

“We have buying power. We can negotiate on their (client’s) behalf with asset managers to provide them lower fees than they otherwise would have to get on their own,” he added.

Mercer Wealth’s clients include sovereign wealth funds, family offices, and insurance companies among others.

From its office in Dubai, Mercer also looks after Africa, India and Turkey, where they also see opportunity for growth.

Wealth creation in Middle East and Africa (MEA) grew 8.5 per cent to $8.1 trillion last year from $7.5tn in 2015, higher than last year’s global average of 6 per cent and the second-highest growth in a region after Asia-Pacific which grew 9.9 per cent, according to consultancy Boston Consulting Group (BCG). In the region, where wealth grew just 1.9 per cent in 2015 compared with 2014, a pickup in oil prices has helped in wealth generation.

BCG is forecasting MEA wealth will rise to $12tn by 2021, growing at an annual average of 8 per cent.

Drivers of wealth generation in the region will be split evenly between new wealth creation and growth of performance of existing assets, according to BCG.

Another general trend in the region is clients’ looking for a comprehensive approach to investing, according to Mr AbuShaban.

“Institutional investors or some of the families are seeing a slowdown in the available capital they have to invest and in that sense they are looking at optimizing the way they manage their portfolios and making sure they are not investing haphazardly and different parts of their investment are working together,” said Mr AbuShaban.

Some clients also have a higher appetite for risk, given the low interest-rate environment that does not provide enough yield for some institutional investors. These clients are keen to invest in illiquid assets, such as private equity and infrastructure.

“What we have seen is a desire for higher returns in what has been a low-return environment specifically in various fixed income or bonds,” he said.

“In this environment, we have seen a de facto increase in the risk that clients are taking in things like illiquid investments, private equity investments, infrastructure and private debt, those kind of investments were higher illiquidity results in incrementally higher returns.”

The Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, one of the largest sovereign wealth funds, said in its 2016 report that has gradually increased its exposure in direct private equity and private credit transactions, mainly in Asian markets and especially in China and India. The authority’s private equity department focused on structured equities owing to “their defensive characteristics.”

UAE currency: the story behind the money in your pockets
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57 Seconds

Director: Rusty Cundieff
Stars: Josh Hutcherson, Morgan Freeman, Greg Germann, Lovie Simone
Rating: 2/5

Expert advice

“Join in with a group like Cycle Safe Dubai or TrainYAS, where you’ll meet like-minded people and always have support on hand.”

Stewart Howison, co-founder of Cycle Safe Dubai and owner of Revolution Cycles

“When you sweat a lot, you lose a lot of salt and other electrolytes from your body. If your electrolytes drop enough, you will be at risk of cramping. To prevent salt deficiency, simply add an electrolyte mix to your water.”

Cornelia Gloor, head of RAK Hospital’s Rehabilitation and Physiotherapy Centre 

“Don’t make the mistake of thinking you can ride as fast or as far during the summer as you do in cooler weather. The heat will make you expend more energy to maintain a speed that might normally be comfortable, so pace yourself when riding during the hotter parts of the day.”

Chandrashekar Nandi, physiotherapist at Burjeel Hospital in Dubai
 

Company Profile

Company name: Hoopla
Date started: March 2023
Founder: Jacqueline Perrottet
Based: Dubai
Number of staff: 10
Investment stage: Pre-seed
Investment required: $500,000

How the bonus system works

The two riders are among several riders in the UAE to receive the top payment of £10,000 under the Thank You Fund of £16 million (Dh80m), which was announced in conjunction with Deliveroo's £8 billion (Dh40bn) stock market listing earlier this year.

The £10,000 (Dh50,000) payment is made to those riders who have completed the highest number of orders in each market.

There are also riders who will receive payments of £1,000 (Dh5,000) and £500 (Dh2,500).

All riders who have worked with Deliveroo for at least one year and completed 2,000 orders will receive £200 (Dh1,000), the company said when it announced the scheme.

COMPANY PROFILE

Company: Vault
Started: June 2023
Co-founders: Bilal Abou-Diab and Sami Abdul Hadi
Based: Abu Dhabi
Licensed by: Abu Dhabi Global Market
Industry: Investment and wealth advisory
Funding: $1 million
Investors: Outliers VC and angel investors
Number of employees: 14

Law 41.9.4 of men’s T20I playing conditions

The fielding side shall be ready to start each over within 60 seconds of the previous over being completed.
An electronic clock will be displayed at the ground that counts down seconds from 60 to zero.
The clock is not required or, if already started, can be cancelled if:
• A new batter comes to the wicket between overs.
• An official drinks interval has been called.
• The umpires have approved the on field treatment of an injury to a batter or fielder.
• The time lost is for any circumstances beyond the control of the fielding side.
• The third umpire starts the clock either when the ball has become dead at the end of the previous over, or a review has been completed.
• The team gets two warnings if they are not ready to start overs after the clock reaches zero.
• On the third and any subsequent occasion in an innings, the bowler’s end umpire awards five runs.

Pathaan

Director: Siddharth Anand 

Stars: Shah Rukh Khan, Deepika Padukone, John Abraham 

Rating: 3/5


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