The World Professional Powerboating Association (WPPA) is taking a step toward achieving its goal of reaching six continents as racing action expands to another exciting new venue next summer. According to a press release, Australia will be the next continent to experience the excitement of the Union Internationale Motonautique (UIM) Skydive Dubai XCAT World Series with a race scheduled to take place in the City of Gold Coast, Queensland, in August 2015.
This is the proposed area of Australia’s Gold Coast where the XCAT event will be held next August.
That’s after a memorandum of understanding was signed by City of Gold Coast mayor Tom Tate and WPPA President Dr. Saif Al Ketbi. Also present at the signing in Dubai was vice president of the WPPA, Dr. Khalid Al Zahed, and Geoffrey Schuhkraft, senior advisor of Middle East relations for Gold Coast.
Earlier this year the WPPA conducted a technical inspection on Australia’s Gold Coast and, together with local authorities, identified that the event could potentially be staged at the Broadwater, with the event base located at Doug Jennings Park on the Spit.
“This is a very exciting time for the WPPA,” said Al Ketbi. “We have been looking to stage an XCAT event in Australia for some time and have had great support from the honourable mayor, Tom Tate, and all the local officials in the City of Gold Coast, which is a sister city of Dubai.
“Known for their spectacular beaches, the two cities are similar in being young, modern cities with a similar vibrant feel—constantly looking for ways to develop both culturally and in the sporting arena, and hosting an XCAT event there in 2015 just seems like the perfect fit,” he continued, adding that local authorities have suggested a potential 10,000 spectator boats for an XCAT race.
From left: WPPA Vice President Dr. Khalid Al Zahed, WPPA President Dr. Saif Al Ketbi, City of Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate and Geoffrey Schuhkraft, City of Gold Coast senior advisor of Middle East relation, met in Dubai to sign a deal to bring XCAT racing to Australia in 2015.
“The City of Gold Coast acknowledges that this is an emerging and developing international event,” Mayor Tate said. “The close and valued relationship between the City of Gold Coast and our sister city, and my personal high regard and respect of Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Maktoum, provides us with a unique opportunity to work together—business and government—to develop a new model of engagement that would work to benefit all parties. We are looking to grow it into one of the city’s signature events—and one of the highlights of the World Series.”
The 2014 World Series has three races remaining—two events in China in October and the season finale in Dubai in December.