Purebred Arabian racing fraternity in strength for HH Sheikh Mansoor Festival finale. Over 800 members of the Purebred Arabian Racing fraternity representing 56 countries will descend on Abu Dhabi, the world capital of Purebred Arabian racing to celebrate ‘One World, 5 Continents’ between November 5 and 9, 2014 to mark the end of the HH Sheikh Mansoor bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Horse Flat Racing Festival ‘s activities for 2014.
Addressing a press conference at the Four Seasons Hotel George V in Paris on Sunday night, Ms Lara Sawaya, Executive Director of the HH Sheikh Mansoor bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Horse Flat Racing Festival and Chairman of the IFAHR Ladies Racing Committee said the Festival’s 2014 season will end on a dazzling note in the UAE capital.
“We start on November 6 with a grand welcome party to be held in Al Wathba Heritage Village after a 2-hour camel racing event for the benefit of the visitors. We will also stage a live draw for two of the four flat racing series held under the umbrella of the Sheikh Mansoor bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Horse Flat Racing Festival – The Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Cup series, the HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Ladies World Championship IFAHR series, HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Apprentice World Championship (IFAHR) and the Wathba Stud Farm Cup series,” she said.
“The 2014 edition of the HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Conference for Education and Training will be held on November 7 and 8. Under directives from HH Sheikh Mansoor bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister of the UAE and Minister of Presidential Affairs, this conference will from next year be under IFAHR and we will be inviting one school from each country to participate in the conference,” Ms Sawaya announced.
On November 9 the final races of the Festival’s the HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Ladies World Championship IFAHR series, HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Apprentice World Championship (IFAHR) will be held along with the Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Cup and the Wathba Stud Farm Cup.
“Out of the 13 winners of the 13 races in the HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Ladies World Championship IFAHR series, 12 will be joined by three jockeys – one each from Hungary, Japan and Morocco. Norwegian lady jockey Victoria Allers who won in Toulouse will not be competing as she is pregnant and she will be replaced by fellow Norwegian Veronica Aske,” Ms Sawaya said.
Mr. Sami Jassim Al Boenain, Chairman of IFAHR and General Manager of the Qatar Racing and Equestrian Club said the HH Sheikh Mansoor Festival helped breeders, owners and trainers of Arabian horses all over the world.
“Purebred Arabian races are now being held alongside the prestigious thoroughbred races in the same meeting. The target to see more Arabian races is progressing in the right direction,” Al Boenain said.
“Brazil and Portugal are all set to start Arabian racing in an organised manner,” he added.
Mr. Wieger Joost de Ruiter, IFAHR Treasurer and Chairman of Dutch Arabian Racing Committee hailed the success of the Festival. “Purebred Arabian racing in Holland was nearly extinct until the HH Sheikh Mansoor Festival started and now, particularly at the grassroots level there is a huge change for the better.”
“Last year in one race meeting of the HH Sheikh Mansoor Festival there were 16 diplomats present and this has never been seen before, even in any thoroughbred race. The Festival had created great atmospheres at the racing venues and this has made a positive impact on Arabian racing,” he said.
Mr Adnan Sultan Al Nuaimi, Director General of Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club said Abu Dhabi was ready to host the Purebred Arabian racing fraternity and welcomed all visitors to the UAE capital while Mr Pat Buckley, Racing Manager of Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club gave details of the race conditions.
Ms Susanna Santesson, representing Fegentri, said the Festival was a huge boost to lady jockeys and thanked Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union, Supreme President of the Family Development Foundation (FDF) and Head of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood for her support.
Mr Ahmad Al Hammadi, IFAHR Board Member said the Festival’s great success at home in the UAE and abroad had ensured Purebred Arabian racing received a huge boost.
The HH Sheikh Mansoor bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Horse Flat Racing Festival is organised by the Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority and coordinated by Abu Dhabi Sports Council in association with Emirates Racing Authority, IFAHR and Emirates Arabian Horse Society, supported by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs , the General Authority of Youth and Sports Welfare with Arabtec Holding PJSC as the Official Partner and Emirates airline as the official carriers and sponsored by Invest AD, Tourism Development & Investment Company (TDIC), Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC), Al Rashid Investment, Al Awani General Enterprises, Kabale, Al Wathba Centre, the UAE’s General Women’s Union, the HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Ladies Sports Academy, Abu Dhabi International Hunting and Equestrian Exhibition 2014, Dr. Nader Saab Switzerland, Al Wathba Center, Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club, Eastern Mangroves Suites-Abu Dhabi by Jannah, Abu Dhabi Sports Channel and Racing Post.