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Aden - Yasmine El Tohamy - Participation from general public to honour the UAE leader exceeded last year's number in a significant way.
More than 200 cyclists, including kids, of over 30 nationalities took part in the second annual Ride for Zayed community event held by NYU Abu Dhabi at Al Hudayriat Island. There were 5km and 10km tracks and seven cyclists completed the 101km challenge to celebrate the legacy of the UAE Founding Father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan.
Peter Dicce, Assistant Dean of Students and Director of Athletics at NYUAD, said the participation from general public to honour the UAE leader exceeded last year's number in a significant way.
"We roughly had 140 participants last year and more than 200 registrations now. Majority of participants are not NYUAD faculty and staff but community members. Sport is a great way to bring the community together. More and more people understand the power of sport to break down barriers. You socialise, talk to people as you ride along. It's a simple and nice means to understanding humanity in a different way," Dicce told Al Khaleej Today after the event.
Dicce invited people to explore the cycling tracks of the island not only to stay healthy but for its vantage spots which captures landmarks from Corniche to ADNEC and beyond.
"It's a beautiful view of the city from some spots. It's fantastic."
The star attraction at the event was Emirati triathlete Faris Al Zaabi, who took to track with his teammates from Spain, where he trains. "This event started last year to commemorate 100 years of the late Sheikh Zayed. This is also celebration of the Year of Tolerance. This event promotes healthy challenges."
NYUAD Women's Intercollegiate Athletics and Sports Communications Coordinator Salma Al Busaeedi said the event represented a 'wonderful conclusion' to the Year of Tolerance.
"With diverse nationalities in the event, we have seen a plurality of cultures using this opportunity to convene and engage with other members of the community. We look forward to welcome participants for 102-km Ride for Zayed next year."
NYU Abu Dhabi held the event with partners Department of Urban Planning and Municipalities, Yas Cycles, Tamkeen and Al Ain Water.
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