26 September 2014, UK ~ Held as part of Newmarket’s historic Cambridgeshire meeting, this year’s Derby was run over two furlongs shorter than its traditional distance, and for the first time on the Rowley Mile course.
Arabian Racing Organisation Racing Manager Amanda Smith commented, “The race has held up well considering its proximity to major international events here and in France after moving from its traditional mid-summer slot.”
“We are extremely grateful to Qatar Racing & Equestrian Club for agreeing to support the race and thereby ensuring that this important event is maintained for the benefit of owners, trainers and their horses. I am sure this will prove to be a valuable addition to their portfolio of international races.”
“Whilst the race may have lacked the numbers of previous years, with three of the six contenders rated over 100, it’s still looked likely to be competitive. With the prize fund at £50,000, all six were guaranteed prize money too.”
Outsider, Attila De Rouaisse (Dormane X Afamanga), one of two Beverly Deutrom trained runners, made the early running. However he was outclassed at the business end, as the three top rated runners fought their way to the line. Najlaa (Al Saoudi x Maizaine), coming on the outside from a long way back, looked as though she may prevail, but Nahee (Bibi De Carrere x Djezika) would not give up, ahead of Majd Al Uraiq (Majd Al Arab x Mezooh) and Nekhen Taoui (Djebbel x Win Taouy).
A photo finish was called and Nahee had prevailed by a short head. The bay son of Bibi De Carrere is a half brother to last year’s World Cup winner Mushrae, also in the same ownership of Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan and trained, like his half brother, by Jean-Pierre Totain in France.
After the race his delighted trainer enthused about his horse’s win and all being well, his charge will most likely reappear in Toulouse for the Breeders Cup at the end of October.
Qatar Racing & Equestrian Club is an important partner of Arabian racing in the UK and is responsible for 17 races in 2014. Alongside their sponsorship of domestic and international races, Qatar Racing & Equestrian Club also backs the UK Arabian Breeders’ Scheme, providing valuable premiums for breeders of winning and placed Purebred Arabians in domestic ARO races.
The UK Arabian season ends this year with the QREC sponsored finals at Wolverhampton on Sunday 28 September.
~ Text and Photography by Debbie Burt