29 December 2016, Qatar Racing & Equestrian Club, Qatar Derby ~ Umm Qarn’s Tayf (Amer x Djelmila) had built his momentum with some credible performances in Europe and then landed a mile-long run last month on his return to Qatar. In the 2000m Qatar Derby (Gr2PA – 4 yo) Tayf pulled off a close victory under Olivier Peslier for trainer Alban de Mieulle as the colt edged out the Ibrahim Al Malki-saddled Mith’haf Athbah with the guidance of Eduardo Pedroza as well as HH The Emir’s Silver Sword winner Spaghetti ridden by Harry Bentley.
Qatar Derby (4yo Local PA)
Sheikh Abdullah Bin Nasser Al Ahmed Al Thani’s Molheb Al Naif (Amer x Kesbah) had no problem stepping up to 2000m, winning under Gerald Avranche. Starting off wide, Avranche had his partner take the lead and after a brief tussle with Umm Qarn’s Damas (Mugadir x Kunooz) coming on to the home stretch, had little trouble guiding the 4-yo home for a two-length win. Sheikh Khalifa Bin Mohammed Bin Khalifa Al Thani’s Barrelaman (Mared Al Sahra x Tm La Belle Proper) was third under Pier Convertino.
Purebred Arabian Special Conditions
The Dhafi Al Ardi Al Marri-owned Al Aayar (AF Albahar x Zirya) held off a strong challenge by Mjuahidah to win the seven furlong run with Qatari jockey, Rashid Al Marri. This won a QR10,000 bonus for the owner, the trainer and the jockey. The Mohammed Hussain-schooled 5-yo took the lead and stayed to the end, staving off a threatening challenge by Harry Bentley and his partner Mujahidah, trained by Mohammed Jassim Ghazali in the final few hundred metres. The Julian Smart-trained Fer’ha was third under Abdulla Al Marri.
Qatar Derby Gr 1
The feature race for thoroughbreds, the USD $500,000 Qatar Derby, produced a win by the Andreas Wohler-trained Noor Al Hawa.Gerrard’s Quest came second with Al Mohalhal back in third.
Qatar Oaks (3yo Local PA fillies)
Al Malhoufa (Mahabb x Al Jazeera) went one better than her last outing to pick up her maiden victory under Harry Bentley. Trained by Jassim Mohammed Ghazali, Al Malhoufa stayed in the mix on the rails even as Al Hawjaa took the early lead. On to the final stretch, Al Hawjaa was overwhelmed by Umm Qarn’s Afra on the inside and Bentley made good use of a gap between the two, having stayed on the inside even as the field spread. Eventually, Al Malhoufa surged forward to win by two lengths the while Majed Seifeddine-saddled Al Sabba emerged second, ahead of Afra.
Qatar Oaks (3yo PA fillies)
Oaks Trial winner Humam (General x Baby Leaune) successfully completed her hat-trick winning the mile-long run under Olivier Peslier’s watch. Alban de Mieulle’s charge was steady in his run with Julian Smart’s Lawa’has taking the early lead. The Umm Qarn filly steadily moved up the order on the final bend before going past Marco Monteriso’s ride in the final furlong for a fine win. Harry Bentley guided Farfale to a third place finish.
28 December 2016, Qatar Racing & Equestrian Club ~ Although Thoroughbred racing carried the larger purses for Qatar International Derby Days, the Arabian Purebred Derby joined the mega-purse class with a USD100,000 purse.
In Arabian action for the day Ateej (USA) took the Qatar Derby, a 1600m turf race. Trainer of Al Mourtajez, Thomas Fourcy brought two to the party, Ateej and Zikreet. Ateej (AF AlBahar x Sahara Croxnoire) under Adrie de Vries shed his maiden status as he edged out Ebraz (Amer) under Richard Mullen and Zikreet (Dahess) under Julian Auge’ Ateej near the finish line.
In the earlier Qatar Derby for local-bred three-year olds, it was Farooq (Nizam) under Gaetan Faucon by two lengths over AJS Gannas backed by Gerald Avranche. The mile-long run saw Umm Qarn’s Farooq leading throughout even as AJS Gannas (AF AlBahar) and Al Malhouf made a brief bid to challenge, but the leading colt looked good for the urn, eventually beating AJS Gannas by two lengths. Mohammed Hussain-trained Tahri Baha (Mared Al Sahra) completed the podium.
Al Rayyan Stakes (2yo Thoroughbreds)
The feature race for thoroughbreds, the USD $100,000 Al Rayyan Stakes for two-year old thoroughbred colts, geldings and fillies run over 7 furlongs was won by the Ibrahim Al Malki-trained Pazeer gaining the upper hand with a dead heat for second between Trouble of Course trained in Norway by Niels Petersen, and Perfect Storm.
Photos by Juhaim