All posts by ARO

ARABIAN RACING ACHIEVEMENTS TO BE RECOGNISED AT HWPA DERBY AWARDS

 

The Arabian Racing Organisation (ARO) was delighted to announce their late Patron, HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum as the recipient of the 2021 Arabian Racing Achievement Award, for an unprecedented second time. It is to be presented as part of the Horserace Writers’ and Photographers’ Association (HWPA) Annual Derby Awards on Monday 6 December, at the Royal Lancaster, London. Now in its’ eighth year, the award, generously sponsored by Equine MediRecord, recognises an individual or organisation for their contribution to UK Arabian racing.

His Highness was a great champion of the Arabian horse and his passion for the breed was instrumental in maintaining and developing Arabian racing in the UK since the 1980’s. 2021 would have seen His Highness gain his 20th ARO leading owners’ title, whilst his champion racehorse and stallion No Risk Al Maury secured a second ARO sires’ title. This success highlights two of the important contributions he made to the sport, alongside many years of generous sponsorship at all levels.

His Highness’s passion was clearly expressed in his aims in supporting ARO. “We want to see more participants in the sport from Britain. We want them to appreciate the beauty and strength of the Arabian horse. It is important to us that people are aware of the noble attributes of the Arabian horse and the thrill that competition in races can bring. We do not want it to be solely a sport for owners from the Middle East. We want everyone to recognise the magnificence of the Arabian horse.”

In recognition of HH Sheikh Hamdan’s achievements, Charles Gregson, ARO Chairman commented: “We were so very grateful for His Highness’s constant enthusiasm for the Arabian horse for nearly 40 years. Next season marks a turning point, with the door wide open for new champions to make their mark, honour his memory and bringing alive his desire for the Arabian horse to gain a wider appreciation.”

 

ARO and DIAR Patron HH Sheikh Hamdan at Newbury in 2019 ©Debbie Burt

 

Pierce Dargan, Equine MediRecord Chief Executive Officer said: “We are proud to sponsor the Arabian Achievement Award that raises Arabian racing’s profile at this prestigious annual event. The impact that HH Sheikh Hamdan had on racing and Arabian racing in particular, cannot be overstated.”

Genny Haynes, ARO Chief Executive Officer commented: “We thank the Horserace Writers and Photographers Association for their continued support of UK Arabian racing, allowing us to acknowledge the achievements of our participants in this way.

“In what has been an extremely challenging year for ARO and for all of the wider horseracing community, we also thank Equine MediRecord for their sponsorship, as well as the Hong Kong Jockey Club, Coral and Vertem Asset Management for supporting the 55th HWPA Annual Derby Awards.”

ARO 2021 SEASON LEADERS REWARDED

The close of the 2021 Arabian Racing Organisation season acknowledged both the past and the future, with awards going to some familiar faces, and also recognising new talent, albeit with roots in Arabian racing.

ARO Patron HH Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum may have sadly passed on, but his legacy continued this year with a first leading owners’ title for Shadwell Estates and his family. With ten individual winners, all were homebreds who raced in the iconic blue and white colours. Though none achieved a black-type victory, Alajab was Group 1PA placed in the UAE President Cup – UK Arabian Derby, whilst Toofaan was Group 2PA placed and Mazyoonah Group 3PA placed. Dual winning three-year-old, Muneer, also looked an exciting filly to follow in the future.

Runner-up was Paul Simmons’s Zayin Arabians, primarily down to the improving Zayin Zyperion, whilst the dual Group winning mare, Bayan Athbah, and her younger brother, Mlatem Athbah helped Athbah Stud to take third place.

Trainer James Owen secured a fifth leading trainer title, thanks to the support of his main patron Shadwell Estates. Amongst his winners this season was leading Arabian, and leading mare, Mazyoonah, who also contributed to her sire, No Risk Al Maury, gaining a second sire’s title. 2018 title-holder Phil Collington was runner-up with his team coming to the fore in the second half of the year, securing two Group wins with the progressive Bayan Athbah. Peter Hammersley was close behind in third place, thanks to the efforts of another No Risk Al Maury product in Zayin Zyperion.

Richard Hills commented: “The whole Shadwell team is honoured to receive this title on behalf of their Royal Highness’s, the family of the late Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

“Our trainers and their teams have done a fantastic job this year, winning races with promising young horses such as Muneer and Mumayyez as well as experienced horses such as Mazyoonah, the 2021 leading Arabian racehorse.

“This homebred filly is by one of the leading sires in the world, No Risk Al Maury, who stands under the Shadwell Arabian Stallions banner. Those successes are a reminder of the great achievements that the Arabian breeding and racing operations of HH Sheikh Hamdan have obtained, and we hope his legacy will carry on.”

Owen commented: “It’s been a great season, the horses have run well throughout. It’s been an honour to train for Sheikh Hamdan and Shadwell Estates, and we’re very grateful for that opportunity. We’ve had some nice three-year-olds through the yard for them this year and we will continue to follow them with interest in their new homes. We’re now looking forward to 2022 with our racing clubs, syndicates and new owners, and helping to promote the sport further.”

Hollie Doyle gained a notable achievement since the removal of the gender-based categories, to claim the leading jockey title, a first for a female and for a professional rider. Having grown up with her family’s Arabians, it is great for the sport for one of its own to succeed as a professional. Her parents (riding and training) had last raced under ARO rules with Rasma in 2003, with Doyle making her debut amateur ride under ARO rules in an Open All-breeds handicap, ten years later. Her first Arabian ride as an apprentice came on the old stalwart, Noble Athlete at Dubai International Arabian Races in 2016, finishing fourth in the Emirates Premier Handicap over a mile at Newbury.

She subsequently rode Farar in that year’s HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Apprentice World Championship race at Lingfield, but it wasn’t until this year that she gained her first ARO win. Partnering Farhaa for Shadwell Estates and James Owen in TheArabianRacehorse.Com International Stakes at Newbury, she later followed up at the same track on the exciting filly Muneer for the same connections.

Rossa Ryan, was another young professional to take well to Arabian racing and he lost out to Doyle on placings. In third was Sean Levey, who has also had a great season, with wins on Zayin Zyperion and Alghadeer, whilst previous dual champion, Alex Chadwick, was the best of the amateurs in fourth.

Doyle was filled with enthusiasm to secure the title saying: “I’m delighted to have won the leading jockey award for this season. I owe a big thank you to Shadwell Estates who have supported me really well throughout the year and to all the trainers who have supported me along the way such as James Owen and Delyth Thomas who I rode for a few years back. I really enjoy riding the Arabians, it’s great fun and I look forward to riding them again next year.”

 

Hollie Doyle with the 2021 ARO Leading Jockey Award  © Debbie Burt

ARO was also pleased to support the popular Best Turned Out Series sponsored by Racing Welfare in 2021. The series rewards the hard-working grooms with points awarded in every race and at the end of the season the winners in each category received a cash prize of £125.

The winning member of staff in a larger yard was Zara Brooks (James Owen Racing), whilst the winner from a smaller yard was Sue Wileman (Peter Hammersley Racing). For the first time ever, the winning most yard was a tie between the Owen and Hammersley teams, with the prize being divided equally between them.

Genny Haynes, ARO Commercial and Finance Director commented on the success of the winners saying. “The season started with the sad loss of our patron, HH Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum, whose love for the Arabian horse has helped shape our racing over the last 20 years. We congratulate everyone involved with the success of the Shadwell runners who have given His Highness a fitting success to honour his memory.

“Despite that great loss, the continuing issues surrounding Covid and also Brexit which impacted on our international runners, ARO is proud to have hosted competitive racing at all levels. We are particularly encouraged to see new owners trying UK Arabian racing for the first time, whether they be individuals or as part of a syndicate.”

She continued: “ARO congratulates James Owen and his team, on another successful season and we were thrilled to see leading professional Hollie Doyle’s star continue to rise in this sphere, on a breed with which she clearly has a natural affinity.

“We thank all our generous sponsors, Racing Welfare, all the racecourses who have supported us and the British Horseracing Authority for their assistance this season, particularly with our international runners.

“ARO is currently working on the calendar for next season, which will be the start of a new era for UK Arabian racing. We hope that we can bounce back from the challenges of the past two years and with the support of our sponsors and our participants, we look forward to developing a stronger and more vibrant sport in 2022 and beyond.”

SEASON CONCLUDES WITH A ONE-TWO FOR SHADWELL ESTATES IN THE EMIRATES BREEDERS HANDICAP STAKES AT WOLVERHAMPTON

The Arabian Racing Organisation (ARO) 2021 season concluded with a one-two for Shadwell Estates in the

Emirates Breeders (0-60) Handicap at Wolverhampton on today. The mile and half contest went right to the wire with Alghadeer trained by James Owen, prevailing by a neck from Alanwaar, trained by Phil Collington. Evermore Racing’s homebred Kayack, was a further length and a half behind in third.

Jockey Sean Levey, who was recording his second Arabian win this season from only six rides, commented after the race: “He’s done it well, like most Arabians I’ve ridden, he’s a thinker, but the race opened up really well for him. I was drawn in stall 10 so I was able to get settled in mid-division into the straight the first time around, and I was able to improve my position before I got to the top bend and again, before we got to the home turn. I found myself in a great position turning in. He thought about it a bit, but I had to make his mind up for him and he put his head down and ran. His ears pricked at the line, but I think he’d done enough at that stage.”

 

 

Genny Haynes, ARO Commercial and Finance Director said: “ARO congratulates Shadwell Estates on another successful year, and both James and Phil who have been responsible for training their winners.

“We also thank the Emirates Breeders for their generous sponsorship of this, our last race of the season. They have been very supportive of our racing this year, with a series that promoted UK Arabian racing at all levels with maidens, conditions races and a variety of handicaps.”

She added: “We would also like to thank the BHA and all the team at Wolverhampton racecourse for their assistance this year, enabling us to cope with the challenges of Covid and keep our racing going under difficult circumstances.”

SEASON CONCLUDES WITH THE EMIRATES BREEDERS HANDICAP STAKES AT WOLVERHAMPTON

The Arabian Racing Organisation (ARO) was delighted that there would be a full field of twelve for the final race of the 2021 season in the Emirates Breeders (0-60) Handicap at Wolverhampton on Monday 20th September. The mile and half contest includes Evermore Racing’s Kayack, who was runner-up over course and distance in a higher grade last term. Beaten a short head in a similar contest by Zayin Zyperion this year, the seven-year-old homebred looks to have ideal conditions to succeed.

Shadwell Estates fields two contenders, the three-year-old Alanwaar, from the in-form Phil Collington stable, who should be better suited by this stamina test, and Alghadeer from the yard of James Owen. Alghadeer is very well related but has yet to fulfil the promise of his pedigree, however a further drop in grade on his second attempt in handicap company could bring about the necessary improvement. Finishing behind Alghadeer when they last met is the highest rated runner Falcon Du Roc’h who gave his new connections, Stride Ahead Racing their first win of the season in June.

He was bred by leading GB Endurance rider, Nicola Thorne, who has another homebred, Akala Sunbird in the line-up. Like Falcon Du Roc’h he is a son of her Listed PA winner Tidarbret and should improve following his debut outing in much better company over shorter. At the other end of the weights are the Connally’s Samawaat, who was course placed on her last run and Jayme Plumb’s Gerko De Tenelle, who is racing off a career low mark.

Welsh based handler, Steve Blackwell has two runners, the veteran Aljawaaher, who has twice been placed this term over shorter and his young hombred filly Aloof. She looks certain to enjoy trying this trip for the first time, though has shaped like she will be one for next season.

Local trainer Pete Hammersley sends three for the race, including his homebred Stonehenge, who was a course winner over two miles, before a minor setback kept him off the track in 2020. After two outings this year, he should be back to full fitness. He is joined by Bin Al Reeh, who won over a mile at Bath at the beginning of the season and Belle Angelique who should fare better for her debut outing last month, though is another who will be seen to better effect next year.

 

 

Genny Haynes, Arabian Racing Organisation (ARO) Commercial and Finance Director said: “ARO would like to thank the Emirates Breeders for their generous sponsorship of this, our last race of the season. It is part of a series that has supported UK Arabian racing through maidens, conditions races and a variety of handicaps, catering for all levels.”

She added: “We would also like to thank the BHA and all the team at Wolverhampton racecourse for their assistance this year.”

AJS HAJAJ SCORES IN THE ROYAL CAVALRY OF OMAN’S SOHAR BEACH STAKES AT WOLVERHAMPTON

The Arabian Racing Organisation (ARO) welcomed AJS Hajaj into the winner’s enclosure at Wolverhampton today, providing his owner Mohammed bin Hamad Khalifa Al Attiyah with his first UK winner with an Arabian. The three-year-old colt was having only his second start and won well by a length and a quarter from Balqees, with Paramer Angel a further three lengths behind in third.

It was also a first Arabian winner for jockey Josephine Gordon, who commented: “Phil’s been very good to me, I’ve been really lucky with the ones I’ve ridden for him, they’ve all been competitive. I’m still learning a lot about them as they’re different to thoroughbreds. Plan A did not work out, as I was supposed to be up with the pace, he’s still a little bit green and I knew that he would stay further, so I knew I would have to swoop and loop at some point, which is not really ideal, as there were already horses three wide.

“AJA Hajaj is obviously a very nice horse, you don’t see many Arabians sprint home like that. He going to keep improving because he definitely doesn’t know his job yet.”

Trainer Phil Collington was delighted with the colt’s performance saying: “It wasn’t exactly how we planned it, drawn in five, I’d said to Josie if she could sit in behind the lead, that would be ideal. She said he jumped ok, but he got a little nudge, and it just took him back a stride, so she just had to accept her fate. However, he showed his class in the straight didn’t he.

“At home, before he ran at Lingfield, he did some sharp pieces of work with some decent milers, and he coped with that, but when he made his debut he got a bit of stage fright, even though he behaved impeccably. He’ll come on with every run, like Josie said. He’s entered at Saint-Cloud for the three-year-old colts Group1PA next month, so now he’s won today, that could well be on the agenda.”

AJS Hajaj is a son of AF Albahar who has a great ARO season, siring dual PA Group winner Bayan Athbah (also trained by Collington), as well as another dual winning filly in Muneer. His dam Nouba Al Maury is a full sister to 2021 ARO leading sire and multiple Group 1PA winner No Risk Al Maury. He is a three parts brother to Rawah, a dual Group2PA winner in France, and a brother to AJS Jood, a winner of the Qatari Breeders Trophy in Doha.

 

 

Genny Haynes, ARO Commercial and Finance Director said: “We warmly congratulates Mohammed bin Hamad Khalifa Al Attiyah for his first UK Arabian win with AJS Hajaj, as well as Phil, his team at home and Josie Gordon. It has also been brilliant for so many new jockeys to gain their first winners under ARO rules this season and we hope that it will encourage more people into the sport next year.

“This was the fifth and final race sponsored by the Royal Cavalry of Oman with us this season and we thank them for their loyal and generous support of UK Arabian racing for many years. We were delighted that they chose to renew their support of our racing this season. We also thank the British Horseracing Authority and all the team at Wolverhampton racecourse for their assistance with this race.”

FULL FIELD FOR THE ROYAL CAVALRY OF OMAN’S SOHAR BEACH STAKES AT WOLVERHAMPTON

The Arabian Racing Organisation (ARO) welcomed a full field for the Sohar Beach (0-75) Handicap Stakes at Wolverhampton on Saturday 18th September. The seven furlong contest has attracted a very competitive field of twelve runners, for the last of the Royal Cavalry of Oman’s five sponsored races in the UK this season.

Heading the field is AJS Hajaj who recently finished fourth on his debut at Lingfield, for owner Mohammed bin Hamad Khalifa Al Attiyah, trained by Phil Collington. Green Ridge Racing’s Al Mahbooba finished ahead of him that day and she is one of six runners for trainer James Owen, including the recently leased Balqees for Gary Allsopp, Jaahez and Serafim Forta for the James Owen Racing Club, Sahis for the Goodwin Partnership and Abqarry, a winner on his handicap debut last month for Shadwell Estates.

Also in the line-up is Pharitz Arabians Group3PA winner Storm Troupour, for Beverley Deutrom, who is the only horse in the field proven over the trip. Like Balqees, the Connally’s Labwah is another filly leased from Shadwell Arabians, though she is less exposed and makes her handicap debut. Paramer Angel for Delyth Thomas has been runner-up in a similar contest on Turf and though he missed last season, after two runs he could be back to his best.

Completing the field are two runners from the Pete Hammersley stable, Zayin Arabians hat-trick seeking Zayin Zyperion, and Al-Tabari, owned by Hammersley’s wife, Michelle, who was a dual winner at this, his local track last season.

 

 

Genny Haynes, ARO Commercial and Finance Director said: “We thank the Royal Cavalry of Oman for their loyal and generous support of UK Arabian racing for many years and we were delighted that they chose to renew their support of our racing this season.

“We also thank the British Horseracing Authority and all the team at Wolverhampton racecourse for their assistance with this race.”

ABBES WINS IMPRESSIVELY IN THE UAE PRESIDENT CUP (UK ARABIAN DERBY) AT DONCASTER

The Arabian Racing Organisation (ARO) welcomed Abbes and Olivier Peslier as the winner of the UAE President Cup (UK Arabian Derby) run at Doncaster today as part of the Cazoo St Leger Festival. The Thomas Fourcy trained colt gained compensation for his runner-up position in the French Arabian Derby in June, by drawing clear of fellow French raider Arion, by four and a half lengths. Alajab finished the best of the domestic trained runners in third. The Group 1PA contest is exclusively for four-year-old Purebred Arabians and was held over the classic distance of a mile and a quarter, with a prize fund of £80,000.

After the race Fourcy commented: “Abbes is a good horse, but he is very laid back. He had a good race, even if he was a bit too relaxed at the beginning. He likes to come through horses to gain his motivation and Olivier Peslier knows that’s how to ride him. They probably went to the front too early, but he won thanks to his class, he will head to the Qatar Arabian World Cup in October and then the HH The Amir Sword.”

Peslier said: “The horse has now won a Group 1 but has always had a lot of ability. Today it was a good race, he responded to my hands, but he still needs more experience, it will be a good preparation for Longchamp.”

Abbes, a homebred colt for owner HH Sheikh Abdullah bin Khalifa Al Thani, is out of Raqiyah, who won a previous running of the UK stage of the UAE President Cup, when it was run in Ascot in 2010, also ridden by Peslier. Abbes has twice been runner-up at this level and has now secured his first Group 1 PA, whilst this is the first success in the race under the UAE President Cup sponsorship for Fourcy, who trained the second in 2019 and three third placed horses since the race came to Doncaster in 2016.

Faisal Al Rahmani, Event Manager for the UAE President Cup commented: “We are happy to see the crowds back on the racecourse, today I met many owners from England and also from Ireland, that are interested in Arabian horses. We hope that these people will spread the word and bring more new people into the sport.

“I’m very pleased with how this year’s UAE President Cup series is going, we have many followers all around the world. Every race produces a star, just like Abbes today. We need to keep this momentum going and hope to encourage more breeding of Arabian racehorses which is part of the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan. At the end of the year we will look to see what we can do with ARO and hopefully we may be able to support more races next year in the UK.

 

 

Genny Haynes, ARO Commercial and Finance Director was thrilled commenting. “ARO congratulates the connections of Abbes on a superb win today. It has been a challenge to support international racing this season and ARO is proud to have been able to ensure it has taken place.

“We were excited to welcome back the President of the UAE Cup in 2016 and we are delighted that this race has consistently produced top-quality winners, Abbes certainly looks to be in that mould. This race is now firmly established as part of St Leger Day, at Doncaster’s most prestigious meeting of the year which enhances the contest’s prestige and Arabian racing’s status in the UK.”

She concluded: “We continue to be extremely grateful to the UAE President Cup Series for their support of our feature race for four-year-olds and to Doncaster racecourse for their support of our racing. We also thank the British Horseracing Authority for their assistance this season, particularly with our international runners.”

LARGEST EVER FIELD FOR UAE PRESIDENT CUP (UK ARABIAN DERBY) AT DONCASTER

The Arabian Racing Organisation (ARO) was delighted to receive nine declarations for the UAE President Cup (UK Arabian Derby) to be run at Doncaster on Saturday September 11th as part of the Cazoo St Leger Festival. Despite the challenges of Covid19 and Brexit, the event has still attracted two quality runners from France. They join seven domestic challengers, making it the largest field for the race since it relocated to Doncaster, when the UAE President Cup resumed sponsorship of the contest in 2016. The Group 1PA race is exclusively for four-year-old Purebred Arabians and is held over a mile and a quarter for a prize fund of £80,000.

The highest rated is Abbes who has raced almost exclusively in Group company in all his starts in France. A winner of two lesser PA group races, he has twice been runner-up at this level, in two of France’s most coveted races, the Qatar Arabian Trophy des Poulains last year and then in his most recent start, the Qatar French Arabian Derby. He met trouble in running that day and trainer Thomas Fourcy will be hoping to gain recompense and a first win in this race, having already recorded three thirds and was most recently second in 2019. He will be ridden by regular partner Olivier Peslier, who finished runner-up in the same HH Sheikh Abdullah bin Khalifa Al Thani colours in 2016.

Also from France is Group 3PA winner Arion. Trained by Elizabeth Bernard for a partnership headed by Haif Mohammed Al Ghatani, the Haras des Rabodanges and Haseg, Arion will be their first ever runner at Doncaster. A late developer, he missed his juvenile season, but has already been placed in Group company at this trip in Italy and has won his last two black-type starts in Belgium over 1m4f and 1m1f, ridden by Jean-Bernard Eyquem. Interestingly, the dams of both Abbes and Arion won the UK stage of the UAE President Cup when it was run at Ascot, each ridden by the respective jockeys who partner their colts on Saturday.

Shadwell Estates hold a strong hand in the race this year, with five runners from two different yards. Alajab, Alghanny and Khateer are trained by Phil Collington who is seeking his third UK Group win this season. All three started their careers in France, and it is recent maiden winner Alajab who carries the first colours, ridden by Dane O’Neill. Alghanny is a brother to a dual winner at this level and is partnered by Kevin Stott who gained his first Arabian win for the same connections last year. Khateer who was placed just short of this trip, is making her UK debut and will be ridden by Ray Dawson.

Aldaana and Farasah also carry the blue and white and are trained by James Owen. Farasah beat Aldaana in the first maiden of the season and has since been placed in a handicap when ridden by Jack Mitchell who continues the partnership. Aldaana is the mount of Hollie Doyle, who was a close second on the filly when stepping up to this distance last month. Owen also fields Awtaar who he has leased from Shadwell Estates and runs in the colours of the Blackrock Racing Syndicate who have a half share. Awtaar is a half-sister to last year’s third and is a landmark first Arabian runner in a Group race for the Irish syndicate, who have had great success with their thoroughbreds. Sahis completes the line-up, he runs in the colours of the Goodwin Partnership, also trained by Owen. He is ridden by Rossa Ryan, who had recorded two wins and a place from four Arabian rides this term, including one over course and distance in July.

Matar Al Yabhouni, Chairman of the Higher Organizing Committee of the UAE President Cup, said: “We are pleased on the success of the prestigious cup on the European race tracks and it’s benefits to owners and trainers”.

Faisal Al Rahmani, Event Manager for the UAE President Cup commented: “The UAE President Cup continues to build on almost 30 years of success.  In many of the countries the UAE President Cup is the highlight of their season.  Arabian racing continues to grow during these golden years.  More fixtures, more horses racing and more breeding, shows the resilience of Arabian racing industry.  With the wonderful vision of His Highness Sheikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the UAE President Cup leads Arabian racing into the spotlight on many international fronts.”

 

 

Genny Haynes, ARO Commercial and Finance Director was thrilled commenting. “We were excited to welcome back the President of the UAE Cup in 2016 and we are proud that this race has consistently produced top-quality winners, who go on to succeed at the highest level in later seasons. This race is now firmly established as part of St Leger Day, at Doncaster’s most prestigious meeting of the year which enhances the contest’s prestige and Arabian racing’s status in the UK.

“We are extremely grateful to the UAE President Cup Series for their continued support of our feature race for four-year-olds and to Doncaster racecourse for their support of our racing. We also thank the British Horseracing Authority for their assistance this season, particularly with our international runners.”

BAYAN ATHBAH GAINS FURTHER GROUP SUCCESS IN THE HH SHEIKHA FATIMA BINT MUBARAK CUP AT HAYDOCK PARK

Bayan Athbah made it three wins out of three starts since arriving in Europe this season, when winning the HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Cup (Gr3PA), at Haydock Park racecourse today. Partnered for the first time by Tom Marquand, the mare worked her way through the field to get ahead by a neck on the line from Mazyoonah, with Abiyah Athbah a further neck behind in third. The £14,000 race was held over a mile as part of the track’s most important fixture of their Flat racing calendar, Betfair Sprint Cup Day.

Marquand who was recording his first Group winner on an Arabian commented: “It was a different experience for her today, obviously the Group race at Newbury was on a nice straight track, so she was able to win smoothly, but here, whilst a low draw can seem great, it can provide some traffic issues. There were a few strides where she just got intimidated by the other horses around her, so it felt like a bit of a learning curve for her and I’m sure she’ll be better again next time.”

He continued: “The ground was very quick, there wouldn’t be many horses that would love it like this so I think a bit more ease wouldn’t go amiss for her. It’s been nearly four years since I last rode a winner for Athbah Stud, but great to have another winner for them and fingers crossed there may be a few more.”

Trainer Phil Collington was recording his third win in the race, which was previously known as the ARO Cup, said: “It was a bit of a relief as I saw Bayan Athbah in a bit of a pocket without a clear run, but once she saw daylight she got there. She stays this trip well and she’ll get further. It’s only been three weeks since she won at Newbury, so this might have been a bit soon, but she’s still relatively inexperienced.”

Lara Sawaya, Executive Director of the HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Racing Festival, said: “We congratulate the winners Athbah Stud, Phil Collington and Tom Marequand who rode a great race on Bayan Athbah. We were excited to bring Arabian racing to Haydock Park on such an important day in their racing calendar and delighted to support the Arabian Racing Organisation through the sponsorship of this race.

“We thank His Highness Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister of the UAE and Minister of Presidential Affairs and 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 all their support and guidance throughout the Festival’s activities this year.”

The Festival has continued to play a significant role in the global promotion of Arabian racing and breeding since it began in 2009. It continues the efforts made by the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan to preserve heritage sports and equestrianism in particular, promoting Arabian horses and the UAE’s heritage around the world. Sponsoring hundreds of races over the last twelve years, from the grass roots to the highest level, these events culminate in the worlds’ richest Arabian horse race on Turf, the Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Jewel Crown, a Group 1 PA run in Abu Dhabi in December.

 

 

Genny Haynes, ARO Commercial and Finance Director said: “ARO is delighted to see Bayan Athbah progress from her recent win at Newbury, to gain another Group success here. We also congratulate Phil and Athbah Stud who have also won this race when it was held at Royal Windsor with another homebred mare, Shomoos Athbah. It is also pleasing to see Tom Marquand gain his first Arabian pattern race victory, as he had his first win in the same colours when he was an apprentice.

“We are very grateful for the continued support of the HH Sheikh Mansoor bin Zayed Al Nahyan Racing Festival who chose to support this race for the first time this year. We thank Racing Welfare for their sponsorship of the  Best Turned Out Award, whose representative Gail Burton- Pye presented the prize to Zara Brooks for Mazyoonah. We also thank the British Horseracing Authority for their support and assistance and all the team at Haydock Park, for whom this was their first experience of Arabian racing at Group level.”

BAYAN ATHBAH SEEKS FURTHER GROUP SUCCESS IN THE HH SHEIKHA FATIMA BINT MUBARAK CUP AT HAYDOCK PARK

Recent Group 2PA sprint winner, Bayan Athbah seeks further Group success in the HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Cup (Gr3PA) to be run at Haydock Park racecourse, on Saturday September 4. The five-year-old mare heads a field of nine for the £14,000 race, held over a mile as part of the track’s most important fixture of their Flat racing calendar, Betfair Sprint Cup Day. The Arabian Racing Organisation (ARO) welcomes the HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Racing Festival as the new sponsor of the race, which was previously known as the ARO Cup International Stakes, previously run at both Newbury and Royal Windsor racecourses.

Those two races had been won by mares trained by Phil Collington, who will no doubt be hoping that Bayan Athbah, can continue his fine run of form in the contest. However, he is also responsible for two ex-French recruits in Alghanny, making his UK debut and Alajab, who scored on his first outing for his new trainer last month. All his runners are lightly raced and are open to further improvement.

Current leading ARO trainer James Owen, has four runners, Al Kaaser, Toofaan and Mazyoonah, all finished behind Bayan Athbah when they last met and like that one, all should appreciate stepping back up to a mile, as should his other runner Farhaa. The Peter Hammersley trained Abiyah Athbah is another who is likely to be better suited by conditions at Haydock, whilst Alameen is making his debut for John Morris, who makes a welcome return to Arabian racing after an absence of ten years.

Lara Sawaya, Executive Director of the HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Racing Festival, said: “We are excited to be bringing Arabian racing to Haydock Park on such an important day in their racing calendar and delighted to support the Arabian Racing Organisation through the sponsorship of this race.

“We thank His Highness Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister of the UAE and Minister of Presidential Affairs and 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 all their support and guidance throughout the Festival’s activities this year.”

The Festival has continued to play a significant role in the global promotion of Arabian racing and breeding since its inception. It aims to continue the efforts made by the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan to preserve heritage sports and equestrianism in particular, promoting Arabian horses and the UAE’s heritage around the world. Sponsoring hundreds of races since 2009, the Festival supports a wide variety of contests from the grassroots to the highest level. These events culminate in the worlds’ richest Arabian horse race on Turf, the Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Jewel Crown, a Group 1 PA run in Abu Dhabi in December.

 

 

Genny Haynes, ARO Commercial and Finance Director said: “ARO is extremely grateful for the continued support of the HH Sheikh Mansoor bin Zayed Al Nahyan Racing Festival and we are delighted to gain a new and prestigious sponsor for this race. We also thank the British Horseracing Authority for their support and assistance and all the team at Haydock Park who will be hosting Arabian racing for the first time.”