On Wednesday 30 June 2010, Oman Sail and Oman Air held a joint press conference to announce Oman Air as sponsor of Oman Sail’s Arabian 100 racing yacht Majan.
Starting 31 October 2010, the Route du Rhum is a transatlantic single-handed 4,000-mile yacht race that takes place every four years. It is one of the most prestigious yacht races in the world and enjoys unparalleled interest and coverage With French sailor Sidney Gavignet skippering, Majan will be branded in Oman Air’s colours. This branding will boost Oman Air’s brand awareness in the European market, building on Oman Air’s services to France, Germany, and the UK. From September 2009, Oman Air began direct flights between Paris and Muscat. The sponsorship aligns Oman Air, Oman Sail and the Ministry of Tourism’s marketing strategies in Europe, with all three taking an active role in the Route du Rhum project.
‘With Oman Air’s ongoing initiatives in promoting Oman as a unique destination throughout Europe, our sponsorship of the Route de Rhum blends well with our efforts to both position Oman as a destination of choice and Oman Air as an exclusive brand amongst our target market in France. The timing of the event coincides perfectly with France’s premier travel trade show (Top Resa) which takes place towards the end of September, giving Oman Air, Oman Sail and the Ministry of Tourism the perfect opportunity to actively promote Oman as a business, trade and tourism destination.” Said Peter Hill, CEO of Oman Air.
According to the Route du Rhum organisers, the race is held second in popularity to the FIFA World Cup by the French Media. The race start will have around 250,000 spectators along the coast. Majan will compete against six other mega trimarans in a fleet of around 70 boats starting in Saint Malo, France crossing the Atlantic Ocean to the island of Guadeloupe in the eastern Caribbean Sea.
David Graham, CEO of Oman Sail said “We are delighted to have Oman Air as Majan’s sponsor as she will symbolise Oman’s vitality and innovation as she competes in one of the most prestigious and challenging offshore races in the world. Within the Sailing fraternity, we have spent two years promoting Oman as a destination. This is now amplified with Oman Air on board.”
Assembled in Salalah and launched in the summer of 2009, Majan is a 105ft trimaran classed as one of the fastest offshore multihulls in the world; she was given the honour of being named by HM Sultan Qaboos Bin Said.
The racing yacht took part in the Arabian Tour in 2009 with stopovers in the UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain and Qatar. Majan also crossed the Indian Ocean in the 5 Capes Race early this year with stopovers in the Maldives, South Africa, Australia, Malaysia and India before returning to Oman.