January 19, 2013
THE Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Endurance Cup is all set to take place today at the purpose-built Dubai International Endurance City Course in Dubai.
More than 160 riders, including 15 international stars from Bahrain, the UAE and overseas, have enrolled for the sixth annual endurance championship. They are scheduled to compete over a 160km course.
Commencing at 6am (Bahrain time), the race is organised and hosted by the Dubai Equestrian Club (DEC), and presented by Longines.
Spearheading Bahrain in today's ride is the Royal Team, captained by Shaikh Nasser bin Hamad Al Khalifa.
The Bahrain riders in the fray are Jaffer Mirza, Raed Mahmood and Abdulrahman Al Zayed. The Bahrain team is being managed by Dr Khalid Ahmed Hassan.
This FEI-approved ride will be divided into five stages with the horses rested and refreshed after each stage.
Royal Team captain Shaikh Nasser bin Hamad Al Khalifa, along with other Bahrain riders and team officials, arrived in Dubai earlier this week along with their horses and equipment.
They visited the race venue yesterday where the horses also underwent a veterinary exam yesterday to determine if they meet the physical standards to continue at the next stage.
After the completion of each stage, the horses are rested and refreshed and undergo a veterinary exam to determine if they meet the physical standards to continue to the next stage.
The horse that finishes first, as well as all finishers, must successfully complete a post-race veterinary exam to determine they did not fail to meet the physical standards set forth by the sport.
It is only after the final veterinary exam that the official order of finish is determined and announced.
The race will be broadcasted on www.endurancebh.com, providing live updates of each stage, which is in line with the directives of Shaikh Nasser bin Hamad Al Khalifa.
Last year, the race was won by 17-year-old Abdulla Ghanim Al Marri who claimed a 27-second victory over Bahrain's Ahmed Abdulla Al Hazza. Marri created a record by becoming the youngest winner of the event.
Race details were revealed during a press conference in Dubai. It was attended by deputy general manager of DEC Mohammed Essa Al Adhab, who told media persons that the international riders include three-star winners from Italy, UK, US and Australia. The prize money will be decided before the race, Adhab informed.
The trophy was also unveiled in the presence of Mahdi Al Basti, board member of DEC, Adhab, and Juan Carlos Capelli, vice-president of international brands, Longines.
Adhab expressed appreciation to our presenting sponsor, Longines, a distinguished brand that has been a major supporter of equestrian sports in Dubai.
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