August 14, FRANKFURT, Germany: It was a 1-2 finish for HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, in the Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Flat Racing Festival’s Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Cup (Listed) race held at the Frankfurt race course on Sunday.
Three year-old Naseem, ridden by Alexandre Gavilan and trained by D Guillemin, surged ahead to win by a length from Thakif, ridden by Charles Nora and trained by J.P. Totain . Magua finished half-a-length behind third. The winning time was 1:47.14.
“This is the second win for Naseem after the Qatar Cup in June and I knew I was going to win today as my horse is in fine form,” said jockey Gavilan.
Khalid Bin Ghalaitah Al Mehairi, Manager of UAE Embassy Office in Bonn, Lara Sawaya, director of Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Flat Racing Festival, Adnan Sultan Al Nuaimi, director general of Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club, Stephen Bowey, Executive Director (marketing) of Invest AD and German Racing Officials participated in the prize distribution.
“Horse racing is a huge passion in Germany as it is in the UAE and thanks to HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan’s initiative Arab horses have become subject of interest among the breeders and Arab horse racing enthusiasts from all over the world. This was the second of the two races organised in Germany after the Berlin event, last month,” he said. Arabian racing is gaining momentum in this part of the world and we are getting lot of calls in our offices from genuine Arabian horse enthusiasts to know more about this breed and other details,” said Al Mehairi.
Abdullah Al Qubaisi, Communication Director of Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture and Heritage (ADACH) said: “Flat racing has a global following and Arabian purebred horses have been consistently successful at prestigious race meeting world over and it is our objective to raise global awareness about their speed and stamina among the true lovers of this sport.”
Ms Lara Sawaya, Director of HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Flat Racing Festival said it was a thrilling race in which HH Sheikh Mansoor’s Naseem and Thakif secured the top spots in front of a packed grand stand.
Sawaya outlined the achievements of the series since its inception saying that it had boosted UAE’s reputation worldwide as a leading promoter of Arabian horses.
Sawaya said preparations are already underway for the 2012 Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Flat Racing Festival and one of the highlight’s will be the HH Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Fegentri Cup which will take place in Newbury, UK next year with a handsome prize money of 20000£, which is scheduled for May 18 next year.
The Festival is being organized by the Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture and Heritage and co-ordinated by Abu Dhabi Sports Council in association with Emirates Arabian Horse Society with support from Invest AD, Areej Al Ameerat, La Sirene, the UAE’s General Women’s Union, Abu Dhabi International Hunting and Equestrian Exhibition 2011, Wathba Stud Farm and Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club.
Photo by Morhaf Al Assaf
Caption: Khalid Bin Ghalaitah Al Mehairi (centre) presents the jockey’s award to Alexandre Gavilan in the presence of Lara Sawaya, Stephen Bowey, Adnan Sultan Al Nuaimi (with the Cup), and German racing officials at the Frankfurt racecourse on Sunday.