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Press Release - Festival 2024 - Conditions on International Races

Press Release - Festival 2024 - Conditions on International Races

21-01-24
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Announcing conditions of premier event Issa Al-Mohannadi: We look forward to success in organising HH The Amir Sword Festival Bader Al-Darwish: International runners enhance competition bar $10 million for winners at QREC

Doha – 21st January 2024

The Qatar Racing and Equestrian Club (QREC), chaired by HE Issa bin Mohammed Al-Mohannadi, announced the conditions of the international races of the HH The Amir Sword Festival, to be held between 15 and 17 February at QREC Al Ryyan turf course. Participation in these races is expected to be large and strong, especially with the unprecedented increase in prize money since, with $10 million on offer. Such boost has maximised the standard of competition in all the races of the Festival and contributed to raising the performance standard of participating runners in both purebred Arabian and thoroughbred races. “As the start of the HH The Amir Sword Festival is approaching and is due to take place within a few weeks”, said HE Issa bin Mohammed Al-Mohannadi, QREC Chairman, “the pace of preparations for the prestigious event is accelerating within QREC in order to ensure the level of success, which is up to the value and prestige of the Festival, which has become one of the main highlights in the horse racing world at this time every year. In addition, the QREC management makes sure to have all technical and organisational arrangements finalised in anoptimal manner, reflecting the standing, which Qatar’s horse racing has reached at the international level. In fact, the increased number of international runners in the Festival every year is a demonstration of the high confidence in the organisational level of the races, which will be staged over three days at Al Rayyan Racecourse.”

Al-Mohannadi: Apply highest international standards

“Work is progressing in full swing in preparation for the HH The Amir Sword Festival”, added Al-Mohannadi, “The conditions of the international participation have been announced. QREC also has many strategic relationships with organisations, who, as our success partners, contribute to the sponsorship of the Festival. The closer the date of the start of the Festival approaches, more details will be revealed both in terms of sponsors and public events, which will be held at QREC on the sidelines of the Festival. Besides, the arrangements for the entries of all the races to be run throughout the days of the Festival have been completed. QREC applies the highest international standards applicable in major races conducted at the world’s top racecourse and this matter attracts many international connections to run their horses in the premier Festival at QREC.”

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Bader Al-Darwish: International runners raise bar

Bader Mohammed Al-Darwish, Acting CEO of QREC, shed light on the conditions of the international races of the Festival. “As per the announced conditions, it has been decided for supplementary entries to close on Tuesday, 23 January while the declarations will close on Monday, 12 February”, he said, “Participation in these races are by invitation from QREC only. The Handicapper will assign an International Rating to each horse that has been nominated or supplemented to the International races, including horses already based in Qatar. These ratings will form the basis for the selection procedure. The races are limited to 16 starters, except for the Dukhan Sprint, which is limited to 14 runners. QREC reserves the right, and has sole authority to decide on the number of runners in the race, after careful consideration of any entry’s overall standing and potential to perform adequately in the race. Consequently, no entry, whether local or International, is guaranteed selection even if fewer than the maximum 16 starters are selected.”The importance of the Festival, as our most prestigious event, makes us work on all details, given the high reputation, which the Festival currently enjoys around the world due to the top qualify and class of the horses vying for the Festival’s titles. Therefore, the participation of international horses is very positive and it increases the strength of the competition at Al Rayyan Racecourse. International horses will be subject to the requirements for temporary import to Qatar, including, bloods within 30 days of export along with the agreed exporting countries health certificate for Qatar.”

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International races of prestigious Festival

The international races take centre stage in the Festival given the value of their titles and the class of their runners. They will be staged on the final day of the Festival, Saturday, 17 February and they are as follows as per their running order. Irish Thoroughbred Marketing Cup (Gr2 QA) for four-year-olds and older over 1600m and the prize money is $500,000. Qatar International Cup (Gr1 PA) for four-year-olds and older Purebred Arabians over 1600m and the prize money is $500,000. Dukhan Sprint (Gr3 QA) for three-year-olds and older Thoroughbreds over 1200m and the prize money is $400,000. Al Rayyan Mile (Gr2 QA) for three-year-old Thoroughbreds over 1600m and the prize money is $400,000. H.H. The Amir Trophy for four-year-olds and older Thoroughbreds over 2400m and the prize money is $2,500,000. The Festival’s finale and most prestigious title, H.H. The Amir Sword (Gr1 PA) for four-year-olds and older Purebred Arabians over 2400m and the prize money is $2,500,000. It is also the third and final leg of the Triple Crown.

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