Sunday, October 19, 2008

Abu Dhabi: Hamdan and Majid to take part in Malaysia Endurance event

By M. Satya Narayan, Senior Reporter
Published: October 20, 2008, 00:12

Abu Dhabi: Shaikh Hamdan Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, and Shaikh Majid Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Culture and Arts Authority will be part of a six-strong UAE team at the 2008 World Endurance Championship to be held in Terengganu, Malaysia from November 6 to 9.

According to the list of entries announced by the organisers, Shaikh Hamdan and Shaikh Majid along with Sultan Ahmad Bin Sulayem, Mubarak Khalifa Bin Shafya, Abdullah Thani Bin Huzaim and Mohammad Ahmad Ali Subose complete the UAE line-up.

Jazyk, Spenda Crest Kamouflage, Koum Des Jamets, Castlebar Kadeen, Zakah Zahara and Tazoul Al Parry are the six horses that will partner the UAE riders.

While four of the UAE riders will take part as a team all six will get a chance to go for gold in the individual event.

The 160-km ride will be held at the Terengganu International Endurance Park and is the first world event to be run in the evening with a 3.30pm start.

Apart from the UAE and hosts Malaysia, 32 other countries have entered their riders with 142 horses and riders being confirmed as definite entries. All countries can enter a six-member team while the hosts Malaysia can enter a 12-member team of riders.

Domestic season

The UAE team is a formidable line-up with Shaikh Hamdan and Shaikh Majid having been winning members of the UAE team which won the Asian Games gold and the Pan Arab Games gold in the team championship. Sultan Ahmad Bin Sulayem won the bronze in the individual event at the Doha Asiad.

The UAE's best result in the world championships was in 2002 in Jerez, Spain when Shaikh Ahmad Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum won the individual gold.

While the UAE will be starting off as one of the strong favourites, joining them in the race for honours will be the French, Spanish, Australian and the US teams. Two-time world champion and silver-medallist once, Valery Kanavy of the US and the French team riders who have achieved the most success in the world championships will be taking part in the November 7 ride.

The UAE's domestic endurance competitions for the 2008-09 season is set to start with a junior ride at the Boudtheib Endurance Village in Al Khatem on November 1. Al Wathba will kick off the open competition with a 120-km ride on November 15, a week after the World Endurance Championship in Malaysia.

According to the tentative endurance calendar for the 2008-09 season, rides will be held at Emirates International Endurance Village in Al Wathba, the Dubai Endurance City in Seih Assalam, Boudtheib Endurance Village in Al Khatem and ;ladies rides at the Al Asayl Endurance Village in Sweihan, Abu Dhabi.

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