HORSE RACING Athlete del Sol wins Zayed Cup in Stockholm
Dutch trainer van den Bos wins Zayed Cup and Shaikha Fatima race
Abu Dhabi: Karin van den Bos scored a magnificent double saddling the winners of the Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Cup and the Her Highness Shaikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Championship (IFAHR) race at the Taby racecourse in Stockholm on Tuesday.
The Dutch trainer first registered a classy win with Athlete del Sol, the five-year-old Dormane son, in the Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Cup (Listed) Cup and then in the Her Highness Shaikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Championship (IFAHR) race Serouda de Breuil finished ahead of Sabka, ridden by UAE lady jockey Shathra Al Hajaj.
The two races were being staged in the Swedish capital as part of the Shaikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Flat Racing Festival.
Athlete del Sol had finished second in the Shaikha Fatima Cup in Duindigt last year but in Tuesday’s race, under Fredrik Johansson, the van den Bos-trained horse came up with a fine finish to beat Al Dahis, the 2010 winner here.
Rasikh, owned by Shaikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, was one of the favourites and did all the running but both Athlete del Sol and Al Dahis did well to finish 1-2 in the feature race.
Van den Bos said: “It is a great feeling, of course, to do a long travel and winning two races. It was a tough competition as the Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan (Listed) Cup drew really good horses, including favourite Rasikh.”
According to a press release, Shaikha Najla Al Qasimi, UAE, Ambassador to Sweden, gave away the trophies in the presence of Abdullah Al Qubaisi, Communications Director at the Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority, Lara Sawaya, Director of the Festival and head of IFAHR ladies racing, Adnan Sultan Al Nuaimi, Director General of Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club, Aisha Al Marzooqi, Head of Strategic Planning at UAE Women’s Sports Committee, Khalid Abdullah Al Hussain, Director of Sports Affairs, General Authority for Youth and Sports Welfare, Stephen Bowey, Executive Director (corporate development) Invest AD and other dignitaries.
“We are very happy to host the Shaikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Flat Racing Festival’s races for a second year in a row here and this has put the Emirates in a commanding position in Sweden’s racing circle. With Shaikh Mansour’s support, Purebred Arabian horse racing have revived in this part of the world,” said Shaikha Najla.
She also praised Shaikh Mansour for his initiative in setting up the stage to host the Shaikha Fatima Bint Mubarak EARS (European Association of Racing Schools) Conference on Education and Training in 2013, in Abu Dhabi.