In the 1000-metre Handicap, AF Ssayes was never headed, and his win also ensured trainer Marie Ritchie tasted her first success as a handler in the UAE.
ES Fatak under Tadhg O’Shea and AF Mukhifah under Antonio Fresu finished second and third respectively in the DH. 70,000 race.
The trainer from New Zealand, a former jockey from Southland, had recently taken charge of the Oasis Stables of Musabah Al Muhairi, who is serving a 12-month ban from the Emirates Racing Authority.
“Obviously I am delighted to get off the mark,” said Ritchie. “We were actually pretty confident as he has plenty of pace and Fernando gave him a great ride.
“There is one more race for him this season for which he needs to get an invitation but he should do as this was his second win this year,” said Ritchie.
Sunday’s meeting also saw RB Burn, the winner of the Festival’s €1.2million Group 1 Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Jewel Crown in November, clinch another Group 1 success here.
RB Burn registered a smooth success in the 1400m Group 1 Liwa Oasis to record his second Group 1 victory of the season in the capital for his owner, Sheikh Sultan Bin Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, trainer Eric Lemartinel and jockey Gerald Avranche.
Settled well off the early pace set by his stable companion, RB Torch under Royston Ffrench, he eased into contention as the leaders swung into the straight when Ain Jaloot took up the running.
He was challenged by AF Maqayes and was able to thwart his determined challenge but had no answer to RB Burn who hit the front inside the final 200m to win as expected.
“I was determined to find cover on him early on as he can be keen,” said Avranche. “Once he settled he travelled nicely so I was happy tracking AF Maqayes and he quickened nicely when I asked.”
Lemartinel added: “He will improve for that and will go to the Kahayla Classic in three weeks at Meydan Racecourse on Dubai World Cup day.”
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, The National Archives as the official partner and Emirates airline as the official carriers, in cooperation with Emirates Racing Authority, IFAHR, Emirates Arabian Horse Society, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, General Authority of Youth and Sports Welfare and sponsored by Al Aweer Stables, Ayadii LLC, Global United Veterinary Services LLC, Bloom, Petromal, Rise General Trading Co. LLC, Hayatna, Wathba Stallions, Abu Dhabi Falconers Club, Emirates Falconers Club, Mohamed Bin Zayed Falconry and Desert Physiognomy School, Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC), Al Awani General Enterprises, Kabale, Omeir Travels, Dr Nader Saab Switzerland, Laboratories Fadia Karam Cosmetics, YAS Channel, Racing Post, Paris Turf, 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 2017, Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club, Eastern Mangroves Suites-Abu Dhabi by Jannah, Anantara Eastern Mangroves Spa and Resort.