July 1 Delaware, USA~The HH Sheikh Mansoor bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Flat Racing Festival’s Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Cup has been elevated to a Group 2 status in its second running and has attracted the top Purebred Arabians racing in the US for Saturday’s race at Delaware Park race course.
Among the nine runners for the US$ 40,000 Group 2 race to be run over 1700 metres on dirt is Grilla, the winner of the Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Cup at the Sam Houston Race Park in April. Grilla will take on TM Fred Texas after losing to the latter in the UAE President’s Cup race in Kentucky last month.
Challenging the top two is Dixies Valentine whose trainer Tracy Nunley also runs Rich Frynchman.
“This weekend is going to be exciting for the Arabian horsemen, and I look forward to the running,” said Nunley, who won the 2010 Darley Award for most outstanding Arabian trainer. “We have the best of the best at Delaware, and it will be an interesting and competitive weekend.”
Trainer Lyn Ashby’s A Ladys Man, Crownn Royal and Ovour the Top and two other contenders Robotic and VIP complete the 9-horse field which is a huge improvement on last year’s four horse field.
The HH Sheikh Mansoor bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Flat Racing Festival is organised by the Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture and Heritage (ADACH) 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.
Mr. Abdullah Al Qubaisi, Director of Communications of Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture and Heritage (ADACH) said, “We are very happy that this race which has been elevated to a Group 2 status has attracted one of the best Purebred Arabian horses currently racing in the US. Last year we had four quality horses and this year we have nine which reflects the growth in stature of the Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Cup race in Delaware.”
Stephen Bowey, Executive Director of Invest AD, said, “After the success of the HH Sheikh Mansoor bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Flat Racing Festival’s races in Houston and Pleasanton we now are back with this great race in Delaware. Invest AD is proud to be part of this series.”
Ali Al Mulla, Chairman of Areej Al Ameerat said, “The HH Sheikh Mansoor bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Flat Racing Festival’s races have been highly successful in promoting Purebred Arabian horse racing around the world. This is part of the UAE Culture and we are glad to participate in this effort.”
Mirna Youness of La Sirene said, “With every such event in Europe and the US the world is getting to know the Arabian horse and its great quality as a racing creature.”
Racing fans can win a trip for two to visit the 2011 Abu Dhabi International Hunting & Equestrian Exhibition through a raffle draw after the Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Cup (Group 2) race on Saturday. One lucky winner will be chosen to win airfare for two with hotel accommodations and full meals to the 2011 Abu Dhabi International Hunting & Equestrian Exhibition on September 14th – September 18th through the draw.