Gulf News : IFAHR chief hails Mansour’s steps

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 Abu Dhabi: The chief of the International Federation of Arabian Horse Racing (IFAHR) authority hailed the initiatives of Shaikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, for reviving the interests of small breeders around the world to promote Arabian race horses.

“There have been a lot of big races that have been promoted by many bodies in the region. But many small breeders had stopped their breeding as they felt neglected. Now the Shaikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Racing Festival has revived Arabian racing at the lower levels and has also revived the market for these breeders and owners,” Sami Al Boueni, IFAHR Chairman, said during a press conference yesterday.

Abdullah Al Qubaisi, Communications Chief of Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture and Heritage (Adach), unveiled the calendar of events of the Festival, which is being held for the third year running. “The Festival has made a global presence at the global arena and our strategy has been to focus on Arabian horse racing which has been our tradition,” Al Qubaisi said.

Improved calendar

The Festival’s Director Lara Sawaya said the calendar of events for 2011 were bigger and better. “For the first time ever, races for women jockeys will be held in association with the UAE General Women’s Union under the wise and able leadership of the Union’s Chairperson Her Highness Shaikha Fatima Bint Mubarak,” she said.

IFAHR and Dubai Equestrian Club Vice-President Mohammad Eisa Al Adhab hailed the impact of the Festivals races for small breeders and new owners. The series has created a great momentum and a great expansion of Arabian horse racing,” the Dubai official said.

The Abu Dhabi Sports Council pledged to support the activities of the Festival and its Secretary Talal Al Hashmi said,” This Festival and its events is a translation of our plans to support sport inside and outside the UAE, particularly equestrian sport.”

Races

Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Cup races in 2011:
 April 9 – Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Arabian Cup, Sam Houston Race Track, Texas, US;
April 22 – Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Prix Hanibal,

Toulouse Race Track, France;
 June 19 – Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Listed Cup, Dundight Race Track, The Netherlands;
July 2 – Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Arabian Cup,

Delaware Park, US;
July 24 – Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Listed Cup,

Berlin Race Track , Germany;
August 7 – Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Listed Cup ,

Frankfurt, Germany;
August 21 – Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Negroda Europy, Warzloviec, Poland;
September 4 – Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Prix Cheri Bibi, Croan Hypodrome, France
November 6 – Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Prestige Cup,

Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club, Abu Dhabi.
Wathba Stud Farm Cup races in 2011 (25 races)
General Women’s Union Ladies Fegentri Cup races (two races)