Saturday, September 05, 2009

Hungary: UAE juniors win team silver

By M. Satya Narayan, Senior Reporter
Published: September 05, 2009

Hussain Ali Al Marzouqi and Shaikh Abdullah Bin Faisal Al Qasimi finished first and second in the World Endurance Championship for Junior and Young Riders in Hungary.
UAE juniors win team silver

Babolna, Hungary: The UAE registered another emphatic victory on the world endurance stage when Hussain Ali Al Marzouqi and Shaikh Abdullah Bin Faisal Al Qasimi completed a 1-2 finish at the World Endurance Championship for Junior and Young Riders here on Saturday.

Besides the gold and silver in the individual event, the UAE also won its second successive team silver medal behind France to keep its success record going.

While it was a great achievement by Al Marzouqi in his first-ever ride for the UAE national team, Al Qasimi's silver medal-winning effort was his third successive podium finish in the World Endurance Championship for Junior and Young Riders (under 21 years).

Al Qasimi earlier won the silver medal in Bahrain in 2005 and the bronze medal in Argentina in 2007 where the UAE also won the team silver medal.

The UAE riders dominated yesterday's event with Al Marzouqi on Sergai completing the 120-km distance in 5 hours 15 minutes 10 seconds at an average speed of 22.46 kilometres per hour.

Almost finishing together, but timed two seconds behind the winner was Shaikh Faisal on Castlebar Sobia while Goncalves Lactitia of France on Jasmine Des Ayssade came third in 5:20.01 followed by two other French riders.

Earlier, Ali Ganem Al Merri on Ridasa Dr GBM, was among the leaders but his horse went lame in the third stage of the four-loop race.

However Mohammad Ahmad Ali Al Subose on Cloud Valley Armani completed the ride to give UAE the team silver medal behind the French while Shaikh Saqr Bin Faisal Al Qasimi on Castlebar Trueman and Majid Mohammad Al Sabri on Mitsouku de Sauveterre also completed the ride to help UAE end the day on a memorable note.

Speaking to Gulf News from Hungary, Ali Mousa Al Khameri, the Chef d'Equippe of the UAE team said, "This is a great win and coming during Ramadan we dedicate this victory to the Rulers of the emirates."

"We had many in the six-member squad who were taking part in an international event for the first time including the winner and they showed great skills in tackling this varied terrain here," Ali Mousa said.

"Shaikh Faisal, with this third success at this level, helped the other members and ensured the UAE's flag kept flying high," the Dubai Equestrian Club chief said.

"With the European Open Championship coming in three weeks time in Italy this is a great start to the season," said Taleb Dhaher Al Muhairi, Secretary General of the Emirates Equestrian Federation.

"Under the Federation President Dr. Shaikh Sultan Bin Khalifa Al Nahyan, we have laid special emphasis on rides for young and junior riders and today's result at the world level has been a reward for those efforts," Al Muhairi said.

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