Wednesday, November 20, 2013

5-Day Equestrian Endurance Race Gallops of Oman from Feb 17

Muscatdaily.com

Muscat Daily staff writer
November 20, 2013

MUSCAT -
Gallops of Oman, the first endurance horse race of its kind in the region, will begin from February 17 next year.

This was announced by the Royal Court Affairs, represented by the Royal Cavalry, on Monday. Gallops of Oman, is the brainchild of France-based Bady Kebir – organiser of several horseback expeditions around the world and Benoit Perrier, manager of Polo Club Chantilly, in partnership with the Royal Cavalry of Oman.

“I am sure it will be an eventful adventure for all participants, even the most experienced ones. It will be a great opportunity to explore the sultanate and its amazing deserts, which we heard so much about. I would like to thank the Royal Court Affairs and the Royal Cavalry for this opportunity to visit Oman and to be part of such a unique race which brings together some of the most experienced horsemen in the world,” said Kebir.

The format for the five-day equestrian event focuses on the ability of riders, the endurance of the horses over 180km of some of the most beautiful, yet challenging landscapes in Oman.

It is estimated that 110 riders from around the world will participate in the event, crossing the Sharqiyah desert for a distance of 180km from February 17 to 21, 2014, from Rakah in the wilayat of Bidiyah, to Agdima in the wilayat of Jalaan Bani Bu Hassan.

“It is a big achievement to organise this race for the first time in the sultanate. I am sure we are going to introduce the world to a unique experience of endurance races in the Omani desert,” said Abbas bin Abdullah al Bahrani, head of financial affairs at the Royal Court Affairs and chairman of the main committee of Gallops of Oman.

Brig Abdulrazak al Shahwarzi, commander of the Royal Cavalry, vice-chairman of the main committee, and CEO of Gallops of Oman, said, “Gallops of Oman will be a significant event in the region. A 180 km desert challenge in not an easy task, not even for the most experienced riders.

“However, we are sure that participants are up to the challenge and we wish them all the best.”

Race schedule

February 17 : At 8am in Al Rakah area, a welcoming ceremony will be conducted before the riders set forth for the first stage of Gallops of Oman. Covering a distance of about 40km, the riders will head to Tiwi Mussalam, the second camp.

February 18 : The second stage covers a distance of about 41km. Riders will then head to Tiwi Khazeena camp.

February 19 : The third stage will cover about 34km before the riders reach Al Htahamam.

February 20 : A distance of about 30km will take the competitors to Qudaih Cam

February 21 : The fifth and final stage will see participants cover a distance of about 26km, concluding the race at Agdima camp. Adjustments will be made along the route to take the distance to a total of 180km.