Australia and Brazil have a healthy share of HARC horses
29 November 2016, Abu Dhabi, UAE ~ The Heritage Arabian Racing Club (HARC), the brainchild of His Highness Sheikh Sultan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, HARC was launched just 20 months ago in order to support and promote racing for those who wish to preserve the traditional characteristics and type of the pure Arabian racehorse.
Originally 11 countries came on board to support these principles but since the word of HARC has spread, we now have 15 affiliated countries (Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Egypt, Iran, Morocco,Palestine, Poland, Russia, Sweden, Tunisia, Turkey, UAE, UK, and the USA) supporting and racing HARC horses worldwide. Eight more countries have expressed an interest to join (Argentina, Canada, Chile, Germany, Italy, Kazakhstan, Spain & Uruguay). HARC’s support is growing.
HARC has many good news stories to share. Starting in Brazil and spreading across the world as far as Australia, both countries have a healthy share of HARC horses and HARC racing is booming. Brazil held 9 dedicated HARC races this year and finished on a high with two National Grand Prix events held on 19 November. Australia has just launched the first races of the new season and are off to a flying start.
In some regions HARC horses are few and far between, and smart solutions have been sought to overcome these individual situations. For example, Evie Tubbs Sweeney, HARC’s USA representative formulated a series of ‘road shows’ for 2016 and tells us: “For this year, I have refocused my expectations after several experiences (i.e. racing forums) to formulate a supported opinion about our path ahead. And I am thrilled to report that the tipping point is happening; people are talking, curiosity is stirring. I am approached at every single Arabian show function I attend with questions. In fact, the Executive Director of the Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show is constantly asking me about bringing back Arabian racing at Turf Paradise in Phoenix and tapping into the thriving Arabian breeding community in Scottsdale – the most concentrated area for Arabian horses in the world, and a Mecca for affluent Arabian horse owners.”
“HARC has shown the United States that it is here to stay, and will continue to incentivize those HARC-bred horses. We have nominated dozens of HARC runners, stallions and broodmares and we have signed up individual members. We have partnered with Arabian Origins Marketing – an e-marketing company that services over 40,000 of the world’s Arabian horse community, and we have educated and planted seeds in the minds of thousands of Arabian horse enthusiasts on the sport of Arabian racing. The moral of the story? “HARC is here to stay“.
Likewise initially the UK had only 9 HARC horses in training so a series of HARC bonus scheme races were put in place. Just one year later those numbers have doubled to 19. Genny Haynes, Director of ARO, was able to end the 2016 season with the first race with all HARC-qualified horses. This was won in true HARC style by LB Farrah, owned, trained and ridden by Teresa Gavin. The mare went on to be leading UK HARC horse of 2016. ARO are now proposing 3 HARC-qualified-only races for the 2017 season – well done UK!
Nelly Philippot, President of Arabian Racing in Belgium, joined HARC just one year ago and was determined to get started, despite only one eligible HARC horse in training. Nevertheless after a series of ‘bonus scheme’ races throughout this season, she managed to pull off a hugely successful European Heritage Championship race.
Eleven of Europe’s best HARC horses, from Sweden, Russia, UK & Benelux, raced for a purse of €20,000. Sweden came away with the top prize with Ingrid Kindh’s grey mare Pamills Lipse (Top Flyte – Pamill). A token Nations Cup run at the event was proudly won by Russia with 9 points amassed through 2nd, 3rd & 4th positions. Philippot commented: “Definitely, seen from the exploding enthusiasm … there is a major demand/need for Heritage Racing and I am so happy that after all the years I was dreaming of it, it now comes to life!”
HARC is definitely making great strides, next season we hope to build on all these successes. We are currently in a bid to bring on board new sponsors to enable HARC’s future growth globally through increased prize money. Also through continuing education we hope to encourage new people into Arabian racing and bring back the owners and breeders from days gone by.
1. Reid River R-Mani (The Accolade x Reid River First Impresshines). Australia’s 1st HARC winner of the 2016/17 season (credit: Glenys Lilley)
2. LB Farrah (Sambist x Simeon Safira) – UK HARC Horse of the Year 2016 (credit: Debbie Burt)
3. Pamils Lipse (Top Flyte x Pamill) – HARC European Heritage Champion 2016 (credit: Lamia Leclerq)