Saeed Mohammed Khalifa Al Mehairi riding 13-year-old bay gelding Shaddad scripted a great win over young Khalifa Ali Khalfan Al Jahouri on 8 Minute to win the prestigious HH The President of the UAE Endurance Cup, held on Saturday, February 11, 2017 at the Emirates International Endurance Village, Al Wathba, Abu Dhabi.
The UAE riders dominated and took eight of the top ten places in the 160-km ride which earlier in the morning started with 205 riders drawn from all over the world.
The ride was attended by HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, HH Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince and His Highness Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, Sheikh Nasser bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Chairman of the Higher Council of Youth and Sports in Bahrain and Chairman of the Royal Equestrian Team and many other VIPs attended the prestigious ride.
Al Mehairi on Shaddad, a horse hailing from the now popular MRM Stables, worked his way into the leaders pack after starting from 28th position in the first loop. The younger Khalifa Ali Khalfan on 8 Minute had a better ride and in the very first loop was placed 3 and also led the pack in the third, fourth and penultimate loops.
Al Mehairi on Shaddad, with a steady pace of just over 25kmph for most of the ride was third in the fourth loop and in the penultimate loop finish just behind the leader Khalifa. It was in the final loop that Shaddad proved superior to 8 Minute and the MRM rider completed the 160-km ride in 6 hours 20 minutes and 51 seconds to score a great victory.
Khalifa finished less than two minutes behind the winner while in third place was Suhail Al Ghailani on Khalifa.
Commenting on the win of MRM Stables, HH Sheikh Mohammed said “I’m happy with the win because everybody will feel happy (Namoos for all). I had told the rider to ride patiently and he has done just that and he paced his horse accordingly. He followed the instructions and the horse picked up nicely.”
Sheikh Mohammed also praised the effort of the runner up Khalifa Ali Khalfan Al Jahouri and the good form of his horse.
“The race was tough and the riders fought fiercely. It was a real competition,” he added.
UAE lady rider Shathra Al Hajjaj on J Star finished 7th and all the top ten riders were awarded posh cars for their winning efforts.
Dr Ghanem Al Hajeri, Secretary General of the Emirates Equestrian Federation, Mubarak Al Nuaimi-Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority, Khaled Hussain, General Authority of Youth and Sports Welfare, Najla Nasser from National Feeds and Flours, Dr. Stefano Daneri, Ahmed Al Qubaisi from Abu Dhabi Sports Council, Ahmed Saeed from Abu Dhabi Judiciary Department, Humayun Alam from Al Masoud Automobiles 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 and car keys to the top ten riders.
“It was a great ride today and the presence of HH Sheikh Mohammed, HH Sheikh Hamdan and HH Sheikh Mansoor and other leaders have made this event a memorable one,” Ms Sawaya added.
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, in cooperation with Emirates Racing Authority, IFAHR, Emirates Arabian Horse Society, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, General Authority of Youth and Sports Welfare and sponsored by Al Aweer Stables, Ayadii LLC, Global United Veterinary Services LLC, Bloom, Petromal, Rise General Trading Co. LLC, Hayatna, 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, Dr Nader Saab Switzerland, 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 2017, Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club, Eastern Mangroves Suites-Abu Dhabi by Jannah, Anantara Eastern Mangroves Spa and Resort.
Results (top 10) in Saturday’s 160-km Three star HH The President of the UAE Cup Endurance ride:
1.Saeed Mohd Khalifa Al Mehairi-UAE-(SHADDAD) 06:20:51
2.Khalifa Ali Khalfan Al Jahoori-UAE-(8 MINUTE) 06:23:49
3.Suhail Ali Rashed Ali Al Ghailani-UAE-(KALIFA) 06:24:20
4.Ghanim Said Salim Ali Owaisi-UAE-FARAAN 06:24:24
5.Abdulla Rashid Mohd Saeed Al Naqbi-UAE-Thiyya Du Mortier 06:28:51
6.Salim Said Al Owais-UAE-PERPLEX DE VERE 06:36:29
7.Shathra Ahmed Murad Al Hajjaj-UAE-J Star 06:38:31
8.Sheikh Mohammed Bin Mubarak Al Khalifa -BRN-(Waterlea Dawn Treader) 06:49:51
9.Saeed Ahmad Saeed Al Khattal-UAE-(F A Bronz) 06:53:20
10.Sabrina Magali Mendiz-ARG-(Sapucay) 06:54:57.