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GAME-CHANGING GOVERNMENT HEALTH AND FITNESS INITIATIVE LAUNCHED FOR CALENDAR SEASON 2015-16 AT YAS MARINA CIRCUIT

StartYAS announced by Health Authority – Abu Dhabi, partnering with Abu Dhabi Sports Council, National Health Insurance Company - Daman and Yas Marina Circuit

Calendar 2015-16 is Yas Marina Circuit’s most action packed and comprehensive season schedule to date with more on offer than ever

Brand new DriveYAS programme on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays puts everyone in the driver’s seat for longer with more retail experience options, flexibility and value

Sustainable local motorsport returns bigger and better with thrilling second seasons of TRD 86 Cup and Yas Super Street

Health Authority – Abu Dhabi (HAAD), the regulatory body of the healthcare sector in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, in partnership with Abu Dhabi Sports Council, National Health Insurance Company – Daman, as headline sponsor via its ActiveLife initiative, and Yas Marina Circuit today introduced an exciting new government health and fitness initiative called ‘StartYAS’ in a bid to get Abu Dhabi more active.

StartYAS will run every Sunday at Yas Marina Circuit from 11th October from 6:00pm-10pm. The event is open to anyone that wishes to use the iconic circuit to improve their fitness.

Building on the success of the existing TrainYAS and GoYAS evenings that sees more than 4,000 people per week running or cycling at the circuit, StartYAS offers residents of Abu Dhabi even more opportunity and choice, and is an ideal way to start the week for those seeking to take charge of their own health and fitness.

H.E Dr. Mugheer Khamis Al Khaili, Chairman of Health Authority - Abu Dhabi, said: “Over the past years, we have seen a significant rise in chronic diseases associated with unhealthy lifestyles, obesity rates, cardiovascular disease and diabetes. For this reason, and as part of our commitment to maintaining a healthy community, we at HAAD have prioritised raising awareness around the importance of adopting healthy lifestyles.”

“This is why we are delighted to launch the StartYAS initiative – an addition to the current series - which aims to provide a weekly beginning for an active and healthy lifestyle, and greater opportunities for members of the community to participate in these types of activities.”

The latest data shows that nearly 20 percent of the Abu Dhabi population is diabetic, and that an approximately equal percentage is pre-diabetic. A short, brisk 30-minute walk each day as well as being fun is key to preventing and managing diabetes by making a substantial difference to people’s lifestyles and bodyweight.

Aref Hamad Al Awani, General Secretary of the Abu Dhabi Sports Council said he was delighted with the introduction of StartYAS: “Our goal is to get every single person possible to participate in regular exercises. We partner on such initiatives to increase awareness of the benefits that walking, cycling or running can bestow and would urge everyone to start their week in healthy and positive manner with us on Sundays.

“In this respect, we are having 40 community sport events for this season. Those events include different types of games as we aim to encourage all segments of the community to practice various and suitable sporting activities in order to lead healthy lifestyle,” Al Awani added.

Long term improvement in the nation’s health is a key strategic goal of National Health Insurance Company – Daman, said Dr. Michael Bitzer, CEO. “We are longstanding supporters of TrainYAS and GoYAS, along with other events at the circuit through Daman’s ActiveLife initiative and we were keen to continue this synergy with StartYAS.”

“Sedentary lifestyles are a major challenge to public health in the UAE, and we are fully committed to doing everything we can to get residents exercising. Events like this are perfect vehicles for people to get active and improve their fitness and overall wellbeing” added Dr. Bitzer.

Al Tareq Al Ameri, CEO of Yas Marina Circuit, believes the addition of a third weekly health and fitness activity cements its position as a true community space and will make a significant contribution to the well-being of residents in the UAE.

“With already more than 250,000 visits to the Circuit for health and fitness purposes alone, we have developed into a space that offers a wide range of opportunities to get active and stay fit. Along with our partners, we are investing in the future health of Abu Dhabi and with the exciting new addition of StartYAS are delighted to be able to provide such a comprehensive and flexible programme to people of all ages and ability,” said Al Ameri.

The announcement was made at Yas Marina Circuit’s official 2015-2016 Calendar Launch, held today. As well as StartYAS by Daman’s ActiveLife, the 2015-2106 season promises the circuit’s most comprehensive calendar of fitness, driving experiences and motorsport to date.

With the 2015 FORMULA 1 ETIHAD AIRWAYS ABU DHABI GRAND PRIX fast approaching, Yas Marina Circuit is headed for another sell-out weekend for the weekend of November 27th-29th, as this week it announced the after race headline artists.

The excitement and anticipation is already building as the final race of the season in Abu Dhabi nears. Sales have been strong since launching in March this year as well as across the summer period for Yas Marina Circuit’s marquee event, with increasing demand from international markets.

Some ticket categories have already sold out with limited availability across many remaining other ticket types; Yas Marina Circuit encourages fans to go to http://www.yasmarinacircuit.com to avoid disappointment.

This year will provide fans further digital engagement through the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix App ‘YasHUB’ and the ‘Ignite your Experience’ functionality, bringing to life all the information needed for the weekend through your mobile phone. The YasHub app is available for download on the Apple iTunes and Android stores.

For those looking for more white-knuckle thrills behind the wheel, Yas Marina Circuit also announced the launch of DriveYAS – the most flexible way to enjoy the wide range of driving experiences available – as well as welcoming Mercedes AMG as a new experience partner.

Whether you want to test yourself against the track in an Aston Martin, feel the raw power of its brand new Mercedes AMG, beat the clock in a Chevrolet SS drag racer, or lay down some rubber in a Drift car, now you can turn up and fulfill your driving dreams on selected days.

With DriveYAS, Yas Marina Circuit now offers a whole range of ‘arrive and drive’ experiences in one value package, and has introduced special offers across multiple experiences. Please visit the website for timings and prices.

The 2015-2016 calendar also welcomes back the TRD 86 Cup for a thrilling second season. Supported once again by Toyota Racing Development (TRD), the TRD 86 Cup is a single-make, sustainable local motor sport initiative introduced by Yas Marina Circuit in 2014 and was created to enable amateur racers to drive in a professional, competitive environment.

This year will feature even more drivers on the starting grid with the introduction of two categories, depending on experience. Those with previous experience can sign up for the ‘Gold’ category, with novices encouraged to take part in the ‘Silver’ category.

Part of the popular Yas Racing Series, the second season gets off to a flying start between 29th October to 31st October, as the first two rounds see familiar faces and brand new entrants fighting it out for a podium finish. The TRD 86 Cup will run across six race days between October and April next year and allows those who have dreamed of professional racing to lead their very own race team in real competition.

This season will also see the return of Yas Super Street Challenge, Yas Marina Circuit’s local drag racing competition, which is back with bigger and better prizes across five categories over four rounds, starting on 7th January 2016.

Continuing with professional racing, the third edition of the Gulf 12 Hours endurance race is back during 9th and 11th December, with a larger grid and the return of Maserati to the grid. Spectators are promised a full day of racing action as the world’s leading manufactures battle it out in one of the most exciting race days in the regional calendar.

Karting enthusiasts will be delighted to hear that March 9th and 10th will see the 11th Round of the UAE Rotax Max Challenge at the circuit, part of the build up to the Rotax Max Challenge Grand Finals that will see more than 260 drivers from 60 countries participating across three categories.

Yas Marina Circuit hasn’t forgotten about the thriving motorbike community and local car enthusiasts, with Bike Track Days and Track Days regularly scheduled in the next seven months, giving amateurs the chance to take the racing line on this iconic Grand Prix track.

There’s exciting news for cycling fans too as they will be able to get up close and personal with leading personalities from the sport as the Abu Dhabi Tour comes to the circuit on 11th October.

Efforts to improve lifestyle habits continues in 2015, as the popular WALK 2015 event taking place on 13th November at the Circuit, in partnership with Imperial College London Diabetes Center and Health Authority – Abu Dhabi. In the run up to actual event, those wishing to participate can also attend a series of six weekly Mini Walks organised across the Emirate of Abu Dhabi.

From Mushrif Park to Al Ain, people can get active with friends and family and share their experiences with the #WalkWithMeUAE across social platforms. More than 20,000 people are expected to attend and walk the 5.5-kilometre track this year.

Whether you’re a competitive athlete, or prefer to exercise at your own level, Yas Marina Circuit’s full line up of health and fitness events provides something for everyone.  The globally renowned Electric Run hits the circuit on 29th January, followed by the ever popular TriYAS by Daman’s ActiveLife race on 26th February. Open to all ages and ability levels, 19th March sees the Zayed Marathon return, offering a fun and challenging course for total beginners or elite runners alike.

“We have launched an exciting calendar of events and programmes providing everyone in the UAE with a wide range of choice and underlines the Circuit’s multi-purpose role within the community.  We are constantly improving and extending our activities and look forward to welcoming all-comers to the Circuit for this coming season”, added Al Tareq Al Ameri.

“Whether you are a motorsport or racing enthusiast, or like to challenge yourself at our unique venue, we will continue to provide the biggest and best sporting and entertainment opportunities in the region. The team at ADMM look forward to welcoming you to the circuit.”

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