Moreno, an 11-year-old bay stallion from Al Reef Stables won the 100-km Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Endurance Cup for the second year in a row at the Emirates International Endurance Village in Al Wathba, Abu Dhabi on Saturday, November 28, 2015.
Last year Moreno carried Argentina’s Catalina to victory in this race and this year it was another Argentinean lady Milena Mendez who won a thrilling 100-km ride spread over four stages.
Earlier in the morning 95 lady riders started in the race which was held under the directives of HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs and sponsored by National Feed and Flour Production and Marketing Co. LLC among others.
The ride was attended by HH Sheikh Mansoor and Sheikh Zayed Bin Hamad Bin Hamdan Al Nahyan among others.
Milena, who was 5th at the end of the first 40kms then moved into second place in the second stage of 25kms but dropped to third in the third stage of 19 kms.
Milena on Moreno started 14 seconds behind Poland’s Kamila Anita Kart on Othentik Du Fausset and fellow Argentine Sabrina Mendiz on El Pangue Beisk but her past connection with her horse seemed to have brought out the best in the final 16-km loop.
Milena and Moreno had won the 100km Sheikha Fatma Bint Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Ladies Endurance Cup on February 28 earlier this year and their partnership worked again as the rider registered her second win and the horse, his fourth win in the UAE. The victory was by a narrow margin as the two horses were separated by just 30 seconds with the winner completing the 100-km distance in 3 hours 38 minutes and two seconds.
The UAE’s Mariam Jasim Al Ansaari on Horr Ibn Jahir was second with Kamila Anita Kart on Othentik Du Fausset third. Argentina’s Maria Julia Sciaroni on Sugarsop De Sallaz and the UAE’s Sara Mohammed Al Jaber on Highland View Dolly finished fourth and fifth and all five top riders were awarded a 4WD car each.
“This is my second win and both were Ladies rides with the same horse Moreno,” said the winner, adding that the track was tough at places where there were many ups and downs and the sand was deep in the final stage.
But Moreno is a great horse. His pulse rate after the final loop was very low. I think he is a true endurance horse,” said Milena.
Adnan Sultan Al Nuaimi, ADEC Director General, Ahmed Al Marzouqi – IFHAR, Mounira Al Marzouqi – National Feed and Flour Production and Marketing Co. LLC and 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) gave away the trophies to the winners.
“Next year this race is going to be a 120km FEI Two-star ride. The fixtures of the new season will be announced in January. Today’s ride was good well-organised and the weather was fine which was of great help to the riders and horses,” Ms Sawaya 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, in cooperation with Emirates Racing Authority, IFAHR, Emirates Arabian Horse Society, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, General Authority of Youth and Sports Welfare with The National Archives as the official partner and Emirates airline as the official carriers and sponsored by Invest AD, Bloom, Petromal, Rise General Trading Co. LLC, Hayatna, Tourism Development & Investment Company (TDIC), Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC), Al Awani General Enterprises, Kabale, 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 2015, Dr. Nader Saab Switzerland, Al Wathba Center, Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club, Eastern Mangroves Suites-Abu Dhabi by Jannah, Yas Channel, Omeir Travels, Racing Post, Paris Turf and Laboratories Fadia Karam Cosmetics.
Results (top five) in the HH Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Endurance Cup CEN 100 Km Endurance Ride on Saturday, November 28, 2015:
1. Milena Mendez –ARG-(Moreno) 03 hrs 38 mins 02 secs;
2. Mariam Jasim Al Ansaari –UAE-(Horr Ibn Jahir) ) 03:38:32;
3. Kamila Anita Kart –POL- (Othentik Du Fausset) 03:39.21;
4. Maria Julia Sciaroni –ARG- (Sugarsop De Sallaz) 03:41.07;
5. Sara Mohd Al Jaber-UAE-(Highland View Dolly) 03:44.00.