August 11, 2013, UK ~ The world’s highest rated Purebred Arabian, Mkeefa, looks set for the Group 1 Qatar Racing and Equestrian Club Harwood International Stakes which will be run as part of the Ladbrokes St Leger card at Doncaster Racecourse on Saturday, 14 September.
Staged under the patronage of His Excellency Sheikh Mohamed Bin Faleh Al Thani, Chairman of the Qatar Racing and Equestrian Club (QREC) and promoted in conjunction with the Arabian Racing Organization (ARO), the £150,000 event attracted 34 entries when it closed earlier this week, including no fewer than four of the world’s top ten Purebred Arabians.
Among the entries, which between them represent seven countries, are three from Qatar-based trainer Alban De Mieulle including Farraah the five-year-old mare who was produced late by David Bouland to snatch victory on the line from Damis in the Al Huwaila Cup at New Rayyan, Doha earlier this year. Damis, who is owned by H.E. Sheikh Mohamed Bin Faleh Al Thani is also set to join the Doncaster line-up together with Djet Taouy (FR) and Muntasar who finished first and second respectively in the Group 1 President of the UAE Cup (UK Arabian Derby) at Newmarket’s 2013 July Meeting. Muntasar has since gone on to victory at the Doha Cup at Deauville August 10.
Reigning UK Champion Trainer, Gill Duffield, and 2011 and 2012 Qatar Arabian World Cup winner, Julian Smart, are responsible for five entries a piece.
Sami Jassim Al Boenain, General Manager and Secretary General of QREC said, “The quality of the entries underlines the race’s status as a valuable and important addition to the International Arabian Pattern. We are looking forward to a competitive race which I am sure will enhance the enjoyment of the day for racegoers at Doncaster and television viewers around the world.”
Further entries are possible at the supplementary entry stage on Tuesday, 3 September.
Amanda Smith, Arabian Racing Organization Racing Manager commented, “We are delighted with the quality of the entries for this race; it is testament to the support of Qatar Racing and Equestrian Club. The timing of the supplementary stage will allow trainers to make entries after the International Arabian Race Day at Newbury on Thursday 15 August providing another high-profile and valuable opportunity to race in the United Kingdom.”