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HH Sheikh Mansoor Festival’s ‘Endurance in Capitals Challenge’ in Paris Fontainebleau

Arthur Desprez riding 8-year-old Verseau D’Aurabelle led a clean sweep of the French riders in the CEI Two-star 120-km HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Cup held on Saturday, October 14, 2017 in the forest of Fontainebleau about 60 kms from the French capital of Paris.

The HH Sheikh Mansoor Cup was part of the two-day HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Horse Flat Racing Festival’s ‘Endurance in Capitals Challenge’ endurance events held here.
It was a great effort in the final loop that helped Arthur Desprez on Verseau D’Aurabelle finish ahead of Laetita Pegaz Tocquet on Vegas De Majorie and Alex Moreau on Tann Salou making it a fine showing from the French riders.
Desprez and his horse were in the 5th place when they started on the final stage of 23kms. Until then they had averaged just over 20kmph speed but in the final stage that pace was increased to 25.89 kmph and that helped Desprez and Verseau D’Aurabelle pip Laetita Pegaz Tocquet on Vegas De Majorie, just one second separating the two riders. The winner completed the four-stage 120-km ride in a timing of 6 hours 02 minutes and 36 seconds.
“All riders were of a high quality but I held a steady pace. With the fitness of my horse in great shape after three loops, I decided to go for it and my horse responded very well. It was a great finish and I am glad I won this close finish,” Desprez said.
Dr. Abdullah Al Raisi, Director General of the National Archives, Ms. Lara Sawaya, Executive Director of the HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Horse Flat Racing Festival, Chairperson of the International Federation of Horse Racing Academies (IFHRA) and Chairperson of Ladies & Apprentice Racing Committees in the International Federation of Arabian Horse Racing Authorities (IFAHR) and General Manager of Wathba Stallions, Dr. Ahmed Al Qubaisi, Director of Marketing and Communication Department at the Abu Dhabi Sports Council, Adnan Sultan Al Nuaimi, ADEC Director General and Mussalam Al Amri, Director of Al Jazira Stables gave away the awards at the prize distribution ceremony.
Ms Sawaya said, “Abu Dhabi, Madrid, Brussels and Paris Fontainebleau were the venues of the 2017 ‘Endurance in Capitals Challenge’ organised under the banner of the HH Sheikh Mansoor Festival.”
“We have great plans and new events to mark the 10th year of the Festival in 2018,” she said.
"The Festival continues its series of achievements and is expanding all over the world as we approach the end of the ninth edition and the big week in Abu Dhabi in November," said Dr. Abdulla Al Raisi.
“The Festival is not only a sports activity, but involves tourism and cultural promotion, and promotes the message of peace and love that the UAE has always stood for,” he said.
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 Ayadi LLC, Global United Veterinary Services LLC, 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, 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.

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