October 11, 2012, Abu Dhabi ~ Eleven riders representing different countries vie for honors in the 1600m PA Prestige as the final leg of the HH Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak World Ladies Championship IFAHR gets underway at Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club in Abu Dhabi Sunday, October 11.
UAE’s hope lady jockey Shathra Hajjaj turned a brave face to land her first win in the series astride Ragdan. The well UAE-bred son of former Kahayla Classic champion Nez D’Or is trained by Dr. Jaber Bittar at the in-form Al Reef stables and looks good to answer all the questions when it matters.
“I would prefer to start from stall five or six, but jumping from stall three is not very bad at the Abu Dhabi tur f track,” the young lady said after the pole position draw ceremony on Tuesday.
Fatma Al Manji who won the third round on Sandpiper at San Houston in US could repeat should her mount Kalid’or manage to restore his great form when emerged the easiest of winners in a handicap event last season at the same venue over a longer distance.
But, with two professional riders launching their respective claims in the run for the AED 100.000 in prize-money, the job of the remaining amateur riders who have already made their presence felt in the previous nine rounds is seemingly a little bit difficult.
Jacqueline Davis from US partners Ibn Battuta Monalu to his third straight win should the five-year-old son of Dormane appreciate the drop in distance while the lady from Down Under Linda Meech needs to do more to improve her chances on A’nnback W’Rsan.
And if this race is to be won mainly by a horse, there’s no doubt that AF Sanadek will sprint home hands and heels and the French lady Delph ine Dubois has only to get ready to wave her hand on the shadow of the post.
But, compatriot French lady jockey Alison Massin had a lucky draw on top weight Andaleep who will be hard to beat on recent form.
Emily Jones, who partnered Phraseur Kossack to win the sixth round of the series in Germany takes the ride on Al Mouttakel and lodges her claim from Gate two. But, the ATR TV presenter has a lot of work to do to face the challenge of stable-companion Swyft under Veronika Ask e in the first colors of the His Highness the President Sheikha Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
In the HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak EARS Apprentice Jockey Race, South African contender Keagan de Melo astride AF Qamoos and Italy’s Antonio Fresu, riding Kalahari Desert, other things being equal, may enter into a bone-crushing battle close home,.
Meanwhile, Seraphin Du Paon, ridden by Tadhg O’Shea has every chance to storm home unchallenged in the Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Prestige Cup, fifth race on the card.
The race is held as part of the HH Sheikh Mansoor bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Flat Racing Festival which is organized by the Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority and co-ordinated by Abu Dhabi Sports Council in association with Emirates Racing Authority, IFAHR and Emirates Arabian Horse Society, supported by General Authority for Youth and Sports Welfare and Fegentri with Emirates airlines as the official carrier and sponsored by Invest AD, Al Rashid Investment, Areej Al Ameerat, Mauzan, Al Awani General Enterprises, Kabale, the UAE’s General Women’s Union, the HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Ladies Sports Academy, Abu Dhabi International Hunting and Equestrian Exhibition 2012, Dr. Nader Saab Switzerland, Wathba Stud Farm and Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club.