Abdul Rahman, Gulf News
Maktoum Nawab Nouh Al Bloushi won the 100km endurance ride of the Shaikh Sultan Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Cup for juniors.
By M. Satya Narayan, Staff Reporter
Abu Dhabi: A gleaming new car awaits 17-year-old Maktoum Nawab Nouh Al Bloushi, who won the Shaikh Sultan Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Cup for juniors yesterday at the Boud Thib Endurance Village.
Nawab and his 9-year-old grey gelding Chupacabra outclassed their rivals to win the 100km ride which was held alongside the three-day 240km event as part of the endurance festival being organised by the Emirates Heritage Club.
Though Nawab may not be able to drive his car, the Abu Dhabi schoolboy will receive the prize at a grand awards function scheduled for tonight to reward winners of all the events.
Nawab, who had previously had only a 10th place finish to boast of did very well to keep Chupacabra in front in the final two loops under conditions favourable to both rider and horse.
"It was good out there today. My horse just wanted to keep going and my trainer Abdulla Saeed Bin Huzaim kept advising me to watch the pace," said the youngster.
Munthar Ahmad Al Baloushi, on Z Califa, finished second to stake claim for the Dh30,000 prize after Ahmad Salem Ali Sultan Al Subosi on Woodlaus Sparkle was eliminated. The latter finished ahead of Munthar but his horse failed the final vet check.
The Boudthib Endurance Village is set for an explosive finish today as the final leg of the 240-km ride will see two cars being won while in the added attraction a 120km ride will also bring together riders from smaller stables to win another two cars on offer.
However, it is the three-day, 240km, event which has brought out the best from a handful of top highly skilled riders. National Day Cup winner Jesus Manuel Berna of Spain and Yousuf Ahmad Al Bloushi, both from the Al Reef Stables, are leading the pack, but the remaining four riders in the leaders' pack are so close that today's 80km final leg is expected to see a fascinating tussle.
Berna and Al Bloushi are followed by Shaikh Hazza Bin Sultan Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Majid Mohammad Salman Al Sabri, Shaikh Khalid Bin Sultan Bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Abdulla Thani Bin Huzaim, with a little under two minutes separating the top six.