Excitement is building for the landmark 31st running of the UAE President Cup for Purebred Arabian horses, the highlight of Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club’s seven-card race on Saturday, February 17.

The 2,200-metre contests, which will be held under the patronage of Sheikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Vice-President, Deputy Prime Minister, Chairman of the Presidential Court, and President of ADEC, is one of the richest Arabian races in the world with an elevated purse of Dhs 4.5 million.

Earlier, Sheikh Mansour announced an increase in the President Cup for Purebred Arabian Horses Classic Series, with the addition of Dh 2 million in prize money.

The richest race for the breed is the Dhs 5 million Group 1 Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Jewel Crown, which is also staged at the Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club.

The seven-race day-night card, which starts at 4.30 pm is expected to attract one of the largest contingents of Purebred Arabian horses.

The UAE President Cup was established in 1994 by the late Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the Founding Father of the UAE, to establish the importance of Purebred Arabian horses and to celebrate why they are held in his esteem, both locally and globally.

Ali Al Shaiba, Director General of ADEC, expressed his profound gratitude and appreciation for the continuous support of the wise leadership, which has played a pivotal role in solidifying and elevating the status of Arabian races to international standards.

“The UAE President Cup reflects the distinctive essence of equestrian sports, serving as a platform to enhance the global standing of Purebred Arabian horses, and embodies the noble values of our society, underscoring our commitment to promoting the cultural richness of these races,” Al Shaiba said.

“Owners and elite riders strive for triumph in a competition where each participant aspires to claim the prestigious title.

“At the Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club, we take pride in organising and hosting this distinguished race, which holds a special place in our hearts,” Al Shaiba added. “We look forward to providing a captivating experience for both the audience and horse racing enthusiasts.”

Faisal Al Rahmani, Chairman of the International Federation of Arabian Horse Racing (IFAHR), noted that Purebred horse racing was fast approaching its peak, thanks to the support of Sheikh Mansour.

“I am honoured to witness the ongoing success and international recognition of the President's Cup, hosted by Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club,” said Al Rahmani.

“I firmly believe that the significance of this distinguished event goes beyond mere competition, embodying the pinnacle of equestrian excellence and illustrating a commitment to preserving the rich heritage of Arabian horse racing and elevating it to global stands.

“The President's Cup serves as a testament to the collective passion and firm dedication of the local and global equestrian community, a reality made possible through the guidance and generous support of Sheikh Mansour Bin Zayed,’’ added Al Rahmani.

“We are extremely proud of the growth of Arabian horse racing in many countries, such as Saudi Arabia, Russia and Germany. The hosting of high-level races has played a key role in the surge of Arabian horse breeding across Europe and the rest of the world.”

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