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Ben Sulayem: 96 Specialists in Formula 1 Medical Team this year

With the eighth running of the Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Formula One Grand Prix fast approaching at the end of this month, yearlong plans are now falling into place for the Automobile & Touring Club of the UAE (ATCUAE), and the variety of different stakeholders assisting the organisation in delivering yet another safe and successful race.

“An event of this scale and significance requires a lot of specialized personnel and equipment to be delivered safely. We succeeded over the last years in collaboration with our partners to deliver a successful event and we aim to continue with the same level this season. We are delighted that we will have 3 female Emirati Doctors along with us this year.” said ATCUAE President Mohammed Ben Sulayem.

“It’s great to watch these cars drive at such high speeds around one of the best circuits in the world, but we must view them as cars carrying a heavy load of fuel at a very high speed. We hope crashes never happen, but, unfortunately this is motorsport, and it is our responsibility to be ready for when they do. Our first priority is the safety of everyone, and we always aim to avoid the mistakes that happen in other countries” added Ben Sulayem.

The event employs a medical team of 96 specialists, including nurses, paramedics, doctors and surgeons, many of whom have been present since the first race in 2009. However, according to ATCUAE Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Dr. Sean Petherbridge, his main objective is to sustain the high quality services provided every year.

“Our medical team who is in charge of providing the medical care and services to everyone involved in the race, it is indeed a big responsibility. Since our first involvement in this event in 2009, our main objective was to provide high quality services and we aim to sustain this level this year and the years to come. By now, we gained the experience that enables us of organizing and dividing our teams in a way that allows us to provide our services to everyone at the same level”. Said Dr. Petherbridge.

One such group are the firefighters from AssetCo Fire and Rescue, an Abu Dhabi based, privately operated firefighting company. Now in the fifth year of their involvement with the event, the Grand Prix has become a highlight of their year.

Maher Badri, the Emirati local Steward at the event commented: “Being one of the stewards at this event is a big responsibility, at the end of the race, the Champion has to be announced, therefore we have a double responsibility to oversee the race and all related details to ensure that the event was run fairly and with absolute transparency for all drivers and teams. I’m pleased to be a part of this prestigious event and I would like to thank H.E Mohammed ben Sulayem for the trust and for selecting me to do this job”.