Top quality contenders for world’s richest race for Purebred Arabian horses
7 October 2015, Abu Dhabi, UAE ~ History will be made at the Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club race course on Sunday, 8 November 2015 when 16 runners burst out of their stalls at 8.45 pm in the world’s richest race for Purebred Arabians in the HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Horse Flat Racing Festival’s Euros 1.2 million Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Jewel Crown (Group 1).
The mile’s contest, which will see horses based in the US, Europe and the Middle East region vying for a slice of the Euros 1.2 million, will also bring the curtain down on a fascinating week of the ‘One World, 6 Continents’ event and the 2015 activities of the Festival.
In the Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Jewel Crown (Group 1), the Dubai Kahayla Classic winner Manark from Erwan Charpy’s yard heads the local challenge which also includes the Eric Lemartinel-trained pair – the undefeated Abhaar and the Dh 3 million President’s Cup winner Abu Alabyad. Abhaar under Tadhg O’Shea already has three course and distance victories to his name and will be bidding to win his 6th successive career race in his unbeaten run.
The sibling rivalry between Scott and Mark Powell will be renewed when Paddy’s Day and So Big Is Better clash as they carry the American hopes.
The 4-year-old Paddy’s Day has won twice since his defeat behind the 11-year-old So Big Is Better and with 11 wins from his 14 career starts seems to give Scott Powell an edge though Mark’s horse won their last meeting in the US. Lady jockey Kelsi Purcell, certianly inspired by Michelle Payne’s win in the Melbourne Cup, rides Paddy’s Day.
Purcells thoughts:“I feel confident though the right-handed track here would be one of our biggest challenges. He is still a baby and he has to overcome that too. The distance is no problem. I won by more than 18 lengths over this distance in the past,” said Purcell, the only female jockey in the 16-horse field.
Mark Powell said, “This is such a great opportunity and I am confident So Big Is Better has it in him to run a good race. He has taken the trip very well and is in great form.”
The European challenge includes Sahabba, trained in France by Jean-Marc De Watrigant and Athlete Del Sol, trained by Karin van den Bos.
Thirteen lady jockeys will be bidding against each other to crown themselves world champion in the HH Sheikh Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies’ (IFAHR) World Championship and so will 12 Apprentice jockeys in the HH Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Apprentice (IFAHR) World Championship races.
The race meeting starts with the Martyrs Cup followed by the Wathba Stud Farm Cup for Private Owners and the Martyrs Trophy for Thoroughbreds with the first race going to post at 5.00 pm. Sunday’s meeting also kick-starts Abu Dhabi’s 2015-16 flat racing season.
“The Martyrs Cup and the Martyrs Trophy are being held in honor of the brave UAE troops who laid down their lives in Yemen,” Ms Sawaya said.
The six-race meeting will then sign off with an impressive closing ceremony marking the end of the 2015 activities of the HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Horse Flat Racing Festival.
Ms Lara Sawaya, Executive Director of the HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Horse Flat Racing Festival, Chairperson of the International Federation of Horse Racing Academies (IFHRA) and Chairperson of Ladies & Apprentice Racing Committees in the International Federation of Arabian Horse Racing Authorities (IFAHR) said:
“Starting with the IFHRA General Assembly and then followed by three days of quality discussions and deliberations in the HH Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Training and Education Conference, the nearly 1000-strong guests will now experience a historic evening of racing at the ADEC track on Sunday.”
“Before the Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Jewel Crown, we have the two finals of the HH Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies World Championship (IFAHR) and the HH Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Apprentice World Championship (IFAHR) and lady jockeys and Apprentice jockeys have been waiting for this day since the year began.”
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, in cooperation with Emirates Racing Authority, IFAHR, Emirates Arabian Horse Society, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, General Authority of Youth and Sports Welfare with The National Archives as the official partner and Emirates airline as the official carriers and sponsored by Invest AD, Bloom, Petromal, Rise General Trading Co. LLC, Hayatna, Tourism Development & Investment Company (TDIC), Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC), Al Awani General Enterprises, Kabale, 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 2015, Dr. Nader Saab Switzerland, Al Wathba Center, Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club, Eastern Mangroves Suites-Abu Dhabi by Jannah, Yas Channel, Omeir Travels, Racing Post and Laboratories Fadia Karam Cosmetics.
Caption- All conference members gather under the banner of HH Sheikh Zayed the first