Sheikh Zayed Cup 2018 series gets off the bocks

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Dutch trainer Karin van den Bos saddled a 1-2 including the winner Dynamites as the 2018 Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Cup race series got off the blocks on the ‘White Turf’ of St Moritz in Switzerland on Sunday, February 4, 2018.

Sunday’s Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Listed Cup was one of the two races for Purebred Arabian horses organized by the HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Horse Flat Racing Festival on the ice and snow tracks on the frozen lake of St Moritz.

Dynamites, a 4-year-old chestnut colt by Nashwan Al Khalediya, owned by Landgoed Waterland, was the favourite in the small but quality field that included last year’s winner Nil Aziz as well as Athlete Del Sol, a consistent performer for Karin van den Bos.

Dynamites under jockey Maxim Pecheur impressed as he made no mistake on the snow tracks to register his third success in the last three races in three different countries. The van den Bos-trained Dynamites had earlier won in Toulouse in France in November, 2017 and also in Pisa, Italy in December and now boasts of three wins in six career starts.

Ridden by Josef Bojko, the 11-year-old Athlete Del Sol, second to Nil Aziz last year, once again finished second but this time ahead of last year’s winner. Nil Aziz under Raffael Lingg lead the procession of four runners , the other three being Nil Ashal, Nil Alamoon and BC Nihal -all trained by Franziska Aeschbacher.

“It is a great start to the Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Cup series as 2018 marks 100 years since the great leader’s birth,” said Ms. Lara Sawaya, Executive Director of the HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Horse Flat Racing Festival, General Manager of Wathba Stallions, Chairperson of the International Federation of Horse Racing Academies (IFHRA), Chairperson of Ladies & Apprentice Racing Committees in the International Federation of Arabian Horse Racing Authorities (IFAHR).

“Next Sunday the Festival’s HH Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Championship race will be held on the snow tracks. We thank HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister of the UAE and Minister of Presidential for the Festival’s success,” she added.

The 2018 White Turf meeting started under optimal weather conditions on the frozen lake of St. Moritz and around 8,000 spectators came to watch the action.

“We are grateful to nature and the numerous volunteers in our team, who have worked towards this event for a whole year. The atmosphere on the track was fabulous. We are just happy and hope that things will continue this way on the two coming race days”, commented Thomas C. Walther, President of White Turf.

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, Al Massood Automobiles and Nissan Middleast as official car partners, in cooperation with Emirates Racing Authority, IFAHR, Emirates Arabian Horse Society, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, General Authority for Sports 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 2018, Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club, Eastern Mangroves Suites-Abu Dhabi by Jannah, Anantara Eastern Mangroves Spa and Resort.