4 August 2017

For the second year in succession, Al Shaqab Racing's Al Jazi wins the Group Three seven-furlong L'Ormarins Queens Plate Oak Tree Stakes. She is trained in France by Francois Rohaut and was sent off the favourite.

Harry Herbert, racing manager for Al Shaqab, said: "She's a specialist at this trip and at this racecourse, coming back to win this for the second year running.

"For Francois Rohaut this is his treble up for Al Shaqab - he also won with Amy Eria three years ago.  So it's very special and good to get a win on the board.

"This is a really important week for us, and, apart from the weather, it has just gone so well. The atmosphere on this racecourse is so incredible.

"For Charles March and his team to have got through the dreadful Wednesday, and to have got the weather they deserve today and apparently tomorrow, is just fabulous.

"For Al Shaqab, of course, it is hugely important, and for Qatar, to have this win. Al Jazi was our best chance of the week and thankfully she's gone and done it.

"It is Frankie's first win of the week so far. It's great, the reaction he gets from the racing public is so unique and so special and of course he feeds off that, and those scenes in the unsaddling enclosure is what it is all about. It's good for Frankie, he's a superstar. Gregory Benoist would have ridden the filly, but he's hurt his neck and has been off for a few months."

Looking ahead, the four-year-old Canford Cliffs' filly, who previously ran in the Group One six-furlong Diamond Jubilee Stakes at Royal Ascot, will probably return to top level company.

"I have not yet spoken with Francois about plans," said Herbert, "but I'd imagine she'd go for the Foret, or something really good like that. When they are specialist over seven furlongs, there are not a huge number of options, and you get temped like at Royal Ascot to go back in trip for the Diamond Jubilee.

"She actually ran very well at Ascot, but a race over six is over before it has begun for her; she does all her best work at the end. Here you can see how special she is, and physically she's doing really well. So, there is no plan yet, but it will be a Group One of some sort.  She might come back and have another go next year, but I think the guys at Bouquetot Stud Farm may want her for covering purposes!

"She is such a good-looking filly by Canford Cliffs at some point she will have to head off and be covered by some fantastic stallion, but for now we'll enjoy it and everyone can celebrate the treble."

Following 11 months off the track, Eternally, partnered by James Doyle, made a good impression coming second on her return to the racecourse. She finished a length and a quarter behind Al Jazi, the winner for the second year running in the G3 L'Ormarins Queens Plate Oak Tree Stakes on the fourth day of the 2017 Qatar Goodwood Festival. John Gosden, trainer, said: "She ran a great race. She hasn't run this year and I'm really happy with her.

"That filly [Al Jazi] won it last year and wins it again this year. We're more than happy with Eternally's performance."



An ebullient Frankie Dettori performed a flying dismount after registering his first winner of the week on the favourite Al Jazi, in the Group Three L'Ormarins Queens Plate Oak Tree Stakes.

Detorri has had a torrid time with a shoulder injury and a stop start return to riding, but his season after victory at the weekend in the King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot on Enable followed by this success, has hit full stride.

"I would like to dedicate this race to Sheikh Joaan." said the Italian as he spoke to the press after the race.

"Al Jazi won easy, travelled well, quickened and is uncomplicated.

"She has got a stride on her and for Goodwood that is ideal.

"She has a good cruising speed and a good kick. She put the race to bed straightaway.

"Friday and I have finally got on the score sheet.

"Qatar have sponsored the meeting and it is nice to get a winner on the board for my boss - I am happy now.

"It has been six weeks since my shoulder injury and I have been working hard at it - it is back to where it was now."

The winner blanket displayed the Tamim al majid image and Dettori put on the image enthusiastically.



Battaash took himself into the leading ranks of sprinters with a convincing two and a quarter length success in the Group Two five-furlong Qatar King George Stakes.

Sent off a chance, he is trained by Charlie Hills and was ridden by Jim Crowley, retained jockey for owner Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum.

Trainer Charles Hills said: "I was delighted with his performance today. It is drying ground but he seemed to handle it no problem at all. I was really impressed with him.

Mubarak Ajlan Al Kuwari, Second Secretary of the Embassy of the State of Qatar in the United Kingdom, presented the trophy to Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum.



Al Shaqab Executive Director, Khalifa bin Mohammed Al Attiya was elated after Al Jazi won the Group Three seven-furlong L'Ormarins Queens Plate Oak Tree Stakes. “That was a long-waited win in this edition of the Festival”, he said, “but what is good and joyful about it is that it is Al Shaqab’s third win of this title in a row. We’ve won several titles twice, but this is our first hat-trick ever. And we’ll be back for the fourth title at Goodwood in 2018.

“Al Jazi’s performance was wonderful and gave her a comfortable win. Francois Rohaut won the same title with her last year. We look forward to more wins tomorrow with three runners, Shraaoh, Medahim and Mazyoun, for Al Shaqab, especially as the races bear the name of Qatar”, added Al Attiya.



Mubarak Ajlan Al Kuwari, Second Secretary of the Embassy of the State of Qatar in the United Kingdom, stressed that this Festival is an annual opportunity to strengthen the Qatari-English relations, especially as the Embassy plays a role in this regard since it is a pure Qatari event sponsored by Qatar.

"We have seen the great success of the festival in the three versions held so far through Qatar’s support and ability to have strong presence and influence in such events. The Festival is also an opportunity for Qatari companies to participate whether directly or indirectly each in their own area of business. The Qatari Embassy in the United Kingdom plays a supporting role in promoting this Festival and inviting UK politicians, parliamentarians and ministers to attend the Festival, contributing to the promotion of the event in the diplomatic circles and so enhancing the recognition of the standing of Qatar worldwide.

"The festival has many gains year after year. Well, looking at it from the mere sports side as one of the most important horseracing events in the world does not give this event its real importance because there are many other gains from the political point of view. The next step will be to invest this Festival on a larger scale and to achieve the goals that contribute to enhancing the standing Qatar everywhere. I wish all the Qatari owners who will participate in the races success and more victories”, concluded Al Kuwari.