June 15, Den Haag~Wednesday started with a Press Conference to kick off the next three days sessions. It was nice to see many of my friends, some of whom I’ve never met —in person—only virtually. Here I am with Texas visitors, Gail and Ed Wilson and Satya, head sports writer for the Gulf News. The Press Conference was chaired by Sami Al Boenain, Chairman of IFAHR and Lara Sawaya, Director of the Sh Mansoor Global Arabian Racing Festival. Local resident, WJ de Ruiter, IFAHR Treasurer and President of the Dutch Arabian Racing Committee (DARC) spoke, giving thanks to the increased racing numbers at Dundigt due to the support of the Sh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Festival and also good attention to Dutch Shell, a new supporter for the races on Sunday. Steven Bowey, Executive Director of Marketing of INVEST AD, already a supporter, said a few words of welcome to the group.
Attending the Press Conference were US Arabian racing notables, Denise Gault, Darla Ripley, Kathy Smoke and Deborah Mihaloff. Also seen in the crowded room were Susanna Santesson, General Secretary of the Federation Internationale des Gentlemen Riders et des Cavaliers (FERGENTRI), Mats Gensberg, Secretary of IFHAR, Longin Blachut, and Margreet de Ruiter.
More guests arrived during the afternoon, and many took advantage of the sun after the rain to stop at the local cafes or take advantage of the intriguing shopping. I learned a very important Dutch word– “korting”– meaning “sale”.
Thursday’s events begin at 10:30 with Session I on Breeding with moderator, Dr. Mohammed Mashmoum. The 3:30 session on Racing and Training will have moderator, Redha Attia, from Tunisia. Each session has six participants. Catch tomorrow’s notes on events.
Thursday heavy rain is expected and the afternoon’s canal boat ride before the second session could get interesting.
Thursday night there is a dinner at the Duivenvoorde Castle: http://www.holland.com/uk/culturalholland/artculture/castles/duivenvoorde-castle.jsp More tomorrow.
Thanks for stopping by. Pamela