It was a Qatari one-two at Goodwood this afternoon as Tayf fought hard to just edge out Ebraz by a nose on the line in the Qatar International Stakes (Gr1PA). Owned by HH Sheikh Abdullah bin Khalifa Al Thani and trained by Alban De Mieulle, Tayf had been beaten by HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Thani’s Ebraz when they last met in the HH Emir’s Sword in Doha in February. In a desperately close finish which required a photo to separate the pair, it was Tayf who came out on top.
Whilst both horses are trained in France in the summer months, this was certainly the worst weather and underfoot conditions either horse had faced in their careers. Speaking after the race De Mieulle said: “Both horses are good, and I know Tayf is a nice horse and Olivier Peslier rode him very well today. We did not know if he would handle the ground. He’s done very well and I am pleased with him.”
Tayf had not been seen out since the Doha race, however Ebraz had the benefit of a European run, winning a Group 3 in France last month. De Mieulle continued: “Yes, we don’t want to push him too much because the season is long, coming from Qatar to Europe, so we will wait now and go straight to Chantilly for the Qatar World Cup.”
Gemma Cobb, Arabian Racing Organisation (ARO) Racing Operations Executive said: “That was a really exciting finish with two of the world’s best Arabian horses fighting it out to the line in desperate conditions. We congratulate both sets of connections and also those of Prada T who has now been placed in this race three times.”
TAYF WINS FIRST STAGE OF DOHA TRIPLE CROWN
“Qatar Racing and Equestrian Club have been sponsoring Arabian racing in the UK since 2009 and inaugurated this race in 2015, as the first leg of the Doha Triple Crown Series. It is an honour to play host to such a high-profile race and we hope that maybe this years’ winner could be the first to make history by going on to win the Triple Crown and claim the bonus too.”
The second and third stages of the Triple Crown are the Qatar Arabian World Cup (Gr1PA), run at Chantilly in October, and the HH Emir’s Sword (Gr1PA) to be run in Doha in February 2018. This series links together three of the most prestigious international racing events and also carries a $1,000,000 bonus to any horse who can win all three stages.
CLOSE COOPERATION BETWEEN QATAR AND THE UK IN VARIOUS FIELDS
Qatar's Ambassador to the United Kingdom, His Excellency Yousef bin Ali Al Khater, said that the Qatar Goodwood Festival has become a hallmark in horseracing in the United Kingdom. Speaking during the second day of the Festival, he said: “The Festival is now a destination for horse fans and lovers in general especially with the strong presence of the best horses and the desire of owners and trainers to win the Festival’s prizes. The Festival is also held regularly every year without change, which confirms the Qatar’s commitment of sponsorship and adds a positive effect to the Qatari-English relations in the sports field, which is one of the many areas that see close cooperation between the two countries.
Qatar is sponsoring not only the Qatar Goodwood Festival, but also another prestigious international racing events such as the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe in France. Qatar also participates in other significant racing events in England such as Royal Ascot and Newbury. Qatar’s sponsorship of the Goodwood Festival was a right decision as it is is an important historical event in the UK.
Qatar's horses have realised impressive results in the world of racing and we look forward to achieving the best at all times, especially as success in results when combined with success in sponsoring events such as the Qatar Goodwood Festival has a great positive impact and contributes to achieving the goals that we look forward to achieving in various fields”, concluded Qatar’s Ambassador to the United Kingdom.
ISSA AL MOHANNADI: WE ARE GLAD WITH THE PARTICIPATION OF QATARI COMPANIES
WE ARE COMMITTED TO MAINTAINING QATAR’S ARABIAN HORSE HERITAGE
His Excellency Issa bin Mohammed Al Mohannadi, Chairman of the Qatar Racing and Equestrian Club (QREC), expressed his satisfaction with the quality of the Qatar Goodwood Festival on the first two days of the event, especially as QREC is keen to maintain the achievements of the first two editions of the Festival. "This year and for the first time, Qatari companies are participating in the Festival to show the roles they fulfil in their respective fields of business”, he said, “This year we are joined by Qatar Airways, as well as Aspire Katara Hospitality. Qatar Airways has a strong presence here through its stand where a real model of its first-class seat is on display. We are delighted with such participation and we invite Qatari companies of international character to be with us in the coming events, especially as we all work to raise the name of Qatar high. In a festival like the Qatar Goodwood Festival, the benefits for the participating companies are large especially with the facilities provided by QREC. As we are promoting the name of Qatar globally, the participation of companies with us certainly contribute to this end.
The benefits of the Qatar Goodwood Festival are not limited to promoting the name of Qatar internationally, but also emphasizing Qatar's keenness to maintain its historical heritage in terms of purebred Arabian horses. It was therefore important for us to benefit from this Festival by running the first leg of the Doha Triple Crown for purebred Arabian horses. This race was rescheduled to be run on the second day instead of the last day of the Festival to be among the strongest races of the Festival. If we consider holding this race in Doha, it will cost a lot and the participation will not be this large for several reasons. QREC therefore has succeeded in benefiting from the Festival in holding this race, which is in line with the vision and the strategy of QREC in the coming years. This fact is being underlined because the benefits from such a prestigious Festival are large and we seek to increase such gains year after year through this sponsorship”, concluded QREC Chairman.
MOLECOMB SUCCESS FOR HAVANA GREY LINES HIM UP FOR A TRIP TO FRANCE
The G3 Bombay Sapphire Molecomb Stakes saw Havana Grey make all under the stands' rail to triumph by a length and three-quarter for trainer Karl Burke, who, ahead of racing, had cast worries about the state of the soft ground aside.
"It was a concern, rather than a big worry," he said. "I walked the track at 8am this morning, and couldn't believe how quick it was. I was surprised, it was beautiful ground.
"There is a lovely strip up on the inside on the rail on fresh ground. I said to PJ do your best to get on that, get him in a rhythm, and be a bit more conservative than at Sandown, kick 100yds later than at were kicking at Sandown.
"I was a bit worried at the start with he was caught out for 50 yards, which is unusual for him, but then he got rolling. As you can see the horse has got loads of speed, and he's got a great turn of foot which he showed again in the last furlong to draw away.
"Probably as a team this is my best bunch of two-year-olds," said Burke, who is enjoying a great year with his juvenile team. "We've only ran half of them, we've a lovely group of staying types to come, so fingers crossed they stay healthy.
"But it doesn't matter how good a trainer you are, if you haven't got the material, if you haven't got the horses who run fast, you aren't going to be training winners. If I've got a strength at all, it's being able to source reasonably priced yearlings."
The ongoing plans for today's winner, a son of leading first-season sire Havana Gold, include a trip overseas to France.
Burke said: "We'll go now for the Morny, we entered this morning, the race closed today. The owners are very keen to go for it, at least today has told us we don't need to worry about the ground! It'll be interesting to see if he gets the six and he deserves a crack at a Group One now.
"Unfortunately, we also have Unfortunately in the same race, so we will have two runners. It's not ideal for me but they both deserve to take their chance."