The Arabian Racing Organisation (ARO) looks forward to welcoming the HH Sheikh Mansoor Global Arabian Horse Flat Racing Festival to Royal Windsor racecourse, following declarations for the two feature races ARO hosts in the UK this season. The HH Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Cup (Gr1PA) and the HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Ladies World Championship (IFAHR) will be run on Sunday 11th August and Monday 12th August, respectively. Sunday’s Group 1 PA race will also be preceded by the UK stage of HH Sheikha Lateefa bint Mansoor bin Zayed Al Nahyan International Pony Championship race, run as part of the Charles Owen Series.
A field of eight will line up for the prestigious HH Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Cup (Gr1PA), which includes the 2017 winner Mith’haf Athbah and four other Group winners from the UK, Sweden and France. The mile contest will be the first Group 1 race ever to be held at Royal Windsor racecourse, who have previously hosted the ARO Cup (Gr3PA) and whose top race for thoroughbreds is the Winter Hill Stakes (Group 3).
The ten-runner HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Ladies World Championship (IFAHR) race features jockeys from Belgium, Croatia, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Spain and the UK. Nineteen-year-old amateur jockey Antonia Peck is the UK representative. Based in Newmarket with leading Arabian trainer James Owen, she is currently heading the ARO Lady Jockeys Championship.
The HH Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Cup (Gr1PA) is the highlight of HH Sheikh Mansoor Global Arabian Horse Flat Racing Festival events in the UK. These began with a stage of the Wathba Stallions Cup, run at Chelmsford City in June won by Mawarid, trained by James Owen and was a first winner for novice jockey Isaac Buncle. A second Wathba Stallions Cup was run at Lingfield Park on Saturday and produced a notable one-two for Delyth Thomas who owns and trains the winner, Callymay and the second, Kork MHF.
Genny Haynes, ARO Commercial and Finance Director said: “We are delighted to welcome back the HH Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Cup to the UK and are proud that this is also the first Group 1 event that Royal Windsor racecourse has hosted. The HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Ladies World Championship (IFAHR) race is a wonderful opportunity for lady riders from around the world to compete against each other and share their experiences.
“ARO is extremely grateful for the continued support of the HH Sheikh Mansoor Festival and Lara Sawaya. Our meetings have always been very well received by the local racegoers at Royal Windsor and we are looking forward to watching some competitive Arabian racing on Sunday and Monday. We also thank Clarissa Daly of the UK Pony Racing Authority for enabling us to host the first pony race in association with ARO.”
Continuing their support for the stable staff, Racing Welfare will be sponsoring the Best Turned Out Award for both Arabian races with a cash prize £20 and a Racing Welfare gilet to the winning groom.