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DOHA: Several fellow racers yesterday alleged that there was a lack of security measures during the Pleasure Boat Race at Katara beach last Saturday, where Qatari participant Rashid Al Mansoori died in an accident.
The comments came as friends and relatives gathered at Aziziya to pay homage to Al Mansouri.
Hamad Jassim Al Zayed said he was very close to Al Mansoori during the accident but was unable to help him.
“Rashid asked me before turning his boat to lean towards the right to avoid the strong winds. But the wind was powerful and overwhelmed us.
“Al Mansoori’s boat flipped into the air, hit him on the head and capsized. I tried to swim to help him but I could not because I had a fracture in my leg.
“The Kuwaiti racers were near us and rushed to save Rashid. They took him out of the water but he had already died,” he said.
Al Zayed claimed that there were no rescue teams in the water. “There was only one ambulance on the beach. There should have been a specialist rescue team in the water,” he said.
Yousuf Al Jassim, a champion in a previous competition and friend of Al Mansoori, said he was watching the incident from a distance and rushed to save him.
“But the Kuwaiti racers were closer to him. They were the first to take him out of the water.”
He also alleged that there were no specialist rescue teams in the water, which are normally provided during international championships.