India's Taramati Matiwade and Kalaga Yaquob created history in Qatar after winning gold in the Hobie 16 class at the 'Sail The Gulf Championship'.
Sailors from several countries including UK, India, Kazakhstan, Canada, Czech Republic, New Zealand, Bahrain, Pakistan, Russia, Malaysia, Sweden, Oman and Norway participated in the 'Sail the Gulf-2011' regatta, held at Doha Bay from February 15-19, organised by the Qatar Sailing and Rowing Federation.
With this win, Taramati has become the first Indian woman to win a gold medal in an international sailing competition overseas.
"This event is one of the most popular events in the world with top class sailors participating. It was a very closely fought series which went down to the last race. In the last race, we had to finish ahead of rivals from Oman to claim the title which we did with ease," said Taramati, adding that strong winds and cold weather at Qatar were very unfavourable.
"Prior to the event we practiced in India in moderate winds of 6 to 8 knots but in Qatar, we faced winds stronger than 30 knots which made the battle for gold even more challenging."
Taramati, who is from Mumbai, said she was now preparing for a few match racing events to improve her world ranking and to represent in the Olympic qualifier in 2012.
She is currently ranked 100th on the ISAF Women world match racing rankings and third in Asia, while first in India on the ISAF ranking.
Taramati has been honoured with the 'Yashwantrao Chavan Pratishtan Yuva Kreeda Puraskar' for her outstanding performance in sailing.