Dubai and Meydan Support for Athens Summer Games Special Olympics

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Dubai Equestrian Club, Dubai Racing Club and Meydan Support
UAE Special Olympics Program

Lilian Sternvad to Assist Equestrian Team for 2011 Summer Games in Athens

      Dubai, UAE, June 21, 2011 – The Dubai Equestrian Club, in conjunction with the Dubai Racing Club and Meydan, are pleased to continue their support of the United Arab Emirates Special Olympics Equestrian Program and have appointed Emirates Equestrian Centre instructor Lilian Sternvad to assist in training the 2011 team for the upcoming games in Athens, Greece.

Since 2007, when the United Arab Emirates assembled their first Special Olympics Equestrian Team, the Dubai Equestrian Club has supported the program. That year, Sternvad worked in training the team as they achieved success in the international competition held in Shanghai, China. Sternvad also assisted the team for competitions including the 2008 and 2010 Middle East, North African regional games held in Abu Dhabi and Damascus, Syria, respectively.

As part of the Meydan Group, the Dubai Equestrian Club (DEC) serves to promote equestrian sports for the people of Dubai. The DEC oversees the sport of Endurance and competitions held at Dubai International Endurance City, and through their subsidiary, the Emirates Equestrian Centre, riding lessons and training in the disciplines of Dressage, Show Jumping and Eventing are offered.

“It is with great pleasure that we support the efforts of the UAE Special Olympics Equestrian team, and we are pleased that the riding instruction provided by the Emirates Equestrian Centre’s Lilian Sternvad will help guide the riders,” said Mohammed Essa Al Adhab, Deputy General Manager, Dubai Equestrian Club. “Our organizations fully support the efforts of the athletes, their families and all the Special Olympians throughout the world.”

As an instructor at the Emirates Equestrian Centre, Sternvad trains novice and experienced riders the skills needed for equestrian sports. A native of Sweden, Sternvad has an extensive equestrian background and has served as an instructor for three decades.

“It is an honor to once again assist in the preparation of the riders for the Special Olympics,” said Sternvad. “The Dubai Racing Club and Emirates Equestrian Centre provide great support to the athletes. We are all pleased as they progress in riding and gain the self-confidence to guide and control their mounts and learn to compete in equestrian sports.”

The UAE Special Olympic Equestrian Team includes four members, with one returning rider from the 2007 team. The UAE riders are residents of Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Ras al Khaimah. Training for the team is held twice a week, Thursday and Friday, at the Emirates Equestrian Centre. The riders are trained to compete in three events each and include Equitation, Prix Caprilli (jumping events) and Gymkhana Figure 8.

Anticipated to one of the world’s biggest sporting events for 2011, the Special Olympics will be held from June 25 to July 4. Approximately 7,500 Special Olympics athletes from 185 nations are set to compete in 22 Olympic-type sports. Equestrian competition will be held June 27 through July 3.

Worldwide Special Olympics offers the opportunity of sports to 3.1 million athletes.

Emirates Equestrian Centre’s Lilian Sternvad puts the UAE Special Olympics Team through their paces in preparation for the up-coming Games in Athens, Greece. Picture copyright of Dubai Equestrian Club / Andrew Watkins

Emirates Equestrian Centre’s Lilian Sternvad puts the UAE Special Olympics Team through their paces in preparation for the up-coming Games in Athens, Greece. Picture copyright of Dubai Equestrian Club / Andrew Watkins

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