Close finishes mark 2016’s final Wathba Stud Farm Cup in UK
29 August 2016, Hereford, United Kingdom ~ A number of close finishes including a dead heat were the highlights of the fourth and final meeting of the HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Horse Flat Racing Festival’s Wathba Stud Farm Cup race series at the Hereford racecourse on Sunday, 28 August 2016.
The Arabian Racing Organization (ARO) paid its final visit to the Hereford racecourse in 2016 with this Wathba Stud Farm Cup meeting, the last of four full fixtures sponsored by the HH Sheikh Mansoor Festival in the UK. The well-supported card produced some very competitive racing which has helped define the 2016 Championship title picture, with two single races and one full fixture to go before the end of the season.
Naishaan win boosts trainer Owen’s hopes
The Dubai Deputy Ruler and UAE Minister of Finance HH Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum looks set to record another owner’s title, but following the retirement of his principal trainer, Gillian Duffield last year (2015), there will be a new ARO Champion Trainer. Currently clear is James Owen, one of two trainers for Sheikh Hamdan. Naishaan’s win in the Wathba Stallions Maiden Stakes has helped to secure this position and he looks forward to the last few races with competitive enthusiasm.
1 Naishaan (FR) 5/2
2 Alrazeen (GB) 1/2F
3 Alwaleed (FR) 5/1
5 ran Distances: 3l, ½l, 3l
TIME 1m 31.37s
Jockey: Miss Joanna Mason
Trainer: Mr James Owen
“We’re looking forward to Chelmsford City, however we have a few runners in the HH Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Apprentice World Championship race first,” said Owen.
No less enthusiastic is Joanna Mason, who rode Naishaan. She is currently leading the Lady Jockeys Championship with four winners.
“Hopefully I will be riding at Chelmsford. James (Owen) asked me to go in and ride Naishaan in her work, which paid off as she’s gone well for me today. She’s quite tricky at home, but she won nicely for me. I really appreciate all the rides the trainers have given me this season which has put me in with a chance of my first ARO Championship title,” Mason said.
Amidst the close finishes was a dead heat between Aurora Forta and Shaama in the Wathba Stud Farm Cup Restricted Maiden.
1 Aurora Forta (UAE) 8/11F
2 Shaama (OMN) 100/30
3 Drake De Palmas (FR) 5/4
6 ran Distances: dht, 8l
TIME 2m 18.10s
Jockey: Mr Simon Walker
Trainer: Mr P J Hammersley
Delyth Thomas’s Kayclaire won the Wathba Stud Farm Cup (0-55) Handicap by a head after the judges called another photo finish. Ridden by Simon Walker-who is clear of his nearest challenger in the Jockeys Championship among men, Will Pettis- who rode the eventual second, Zayin Zamurai.
1 Kayclaire (GB) EvensF
2 Zayin Zamurai (GB) 5/2
3 Johara Bint Shuwaiman (GB) 25/1
7 ran Distances: hd, 3l, 7l
TIME 2m 4.03s
Jockey: Mr Simon Walker
Trainer: Mrs D Thomas
Recording a very well deserved first win was trainer Christopher Bull and jockey Morgan Winstone with Parma T. A winner in Holland. She had raced for Stewart Shefras last season, but has been consistently making the frame in all her races since moving to Bull’s yard.
1 Parma T (HOL) 5/4F
2 Kork Mhf (USA) 5/1
3 Unity Belle (FR) 7/1
NR: Ultimate Force (FR)
11 ran Distances: 2l, 8l, shd
TIME 2m 4.59s
Jockey: Mr Morgan Winstone
Trainer: Christopher Bull
“This is my first Arabian, she’s the only horse we’ve got. She works on her own, though we’re very lucky to have the use of Dai Burchell’s gallops. I started off pony racing on the Welsh circuit a long time ago now and I got into Arabian racing through Paul Beard and Delyth Thomas,” Bull said.
Jockey Winstone was clearly delighted with his first ARO win saying. “So far I’ve only ridden for Chris but I’m looking to get rides for other people too. I’m based in Pontypool and ride out for Thoroughbred trainer, Robert Stevens and I’ll be taking out a point-to-point license this winter.”
ARO had recently welcomed the news that the HH Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Apprentice World Championship (IFAHR) will be returning to the UK next month on September 10. The UK leg will feature 10 Apprentice jockeys drawn from around the world who will compete on Purebred Arabians at Lingfield Park racecourse. The winning apprentice of the €20,000 race, will earn the right to compete in the series final to be held in Abu Dhabi on 13 November.
The event will conclude an exciting year for the HH Sheikh Mansoor Festival in the UK, Amanda Smith ARO Racing Manager, commented. “We have had a brilliant year’s racing with the Festival at Hereford and today’s racing has been no less competitive. ARO is looking forward to the UK stage of the HH Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Apprentice series at Lingfied next month. It has previously has been staged at Newbury and Sandown Park and each time we are able to give the apprentices a new challenge, helping to develop their careers.”
The HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Horse Flat Racing Festival is sustained by the Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority and coordinated by Abu Dhabi Sports Council, with National Feed and Flour Production and Marketing Co. LLC as associate sponsors, IPIC as Strategic Partner, The National Archives as the official partner and Emirates airline as the official carriers, in cooperation with Emirates Racing Authority, IFAHR, Emirates Arabian Horse Society, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, General Authority of Youth and Sports Welfare and sponsored by Al Aweer Stables, Ayadii LLC, Global United Veterinary Services LLC, Bloom, Petromal, Rise General Trading Co. LLC, Hayatna, Wathba Stallions, Abu Dhabi Falconers Club, Emirates Falconers Club, Mohamed Bin Zayed Falconry and Desert Physiognomy School, Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC), Al Awani General Enterprises, Kabale, Omeir Travels, Dr Nader Saab Switzerland, Laboratories Fadia Karam Cosmetics, YAS Channel, Racing Post, Paris Turf, Al Wathba Centre, the UAE’s General Women’s Union, The Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, the HH Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Sports Academy, Abu Dhabi International Hunting and Equestrian Exhibition 2016, Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club, Eastern Mangroves Suites-Abu Dhabi by Jannah, Anantara Eastern Mangroves Spa and Resort.
~ end supplied report