Fujairah, UAE – The Organising Committee of the first Fujairah Horse Dressage Championship revealed it has completed all preparations for the upcoming tournament on 17 December 2023 in a press conference attended by Dr. Ahmed Hamdan Al Zeyoudi, Head of the Championship’s Organising Committee; Ali Al Kaabi, Head of the Dressage Committee at the UAE Equestrian and Racing Federation (UAEERF) and Director of the Championship; and Neil Abraham, Member of the Dressage Committee at UAEERF.
The Championship aims to enhance and diversify equestrian activities in the emirate, in line with the directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad Al Sharqi, Crown Prince of Fujairah, to focus on traditional sports and strengthen the UAE’s position as a leading host for prominent athletic events.
The Organising Committee revealed that 50 participants are now ready to compete in the Championship, which commences on 17 December in the vicinity of the historical Fujairah Fort and includes 10 rounds where riders compete for 10 cups across 11 categories.
In a statement, Dr. Al Zeyoudi said: “Guided by its wise leadership, Fujairah is steadfast in its commitment to reinforcing its presence in traditional sports that embody our authentic Emirati values and promote them among future generations. As we host this championship, we welcome all participants, wish them success, and look forward to seeing their distinctive performances that reflect their passion and the preparation they have done to participate in this tournament.”
For his part, Ali Al Kaabi commented: “Fujairah has made significant strides in promoting equestrian sports and hosting events that highlight their important role as a pillar of national identity in the UAE. Hosting the Championship for the first time in the emirate reflects the great attention given to traditional sports and the impact it has on enhancing cultural communication, introducing noble values, and preserving authentic social heritage.”
“Equestrian sports hold a special place in the hearts of all members of the UAE community,” Al Kaabi added. “They are an important traditional sport with wide popularity, and an authentic practice closely linked to our past and present. With that in mind, we are keen on organising this championship and ensuring its success, in order to pass this sport down to future generations.”
Meanwhile, Neil Abraham stated: “Dressage is gaining increasing traction in the region and around the world. We see Fujairah as a leading destination in this field with significant capabilities and support at all levels. We are confident in the emirate’s ability to organise and succeed in this championship, presenting a distinctive image that reflects its development across all sectors.”
Participants in the Championship are divided into 11 categories: First preliminary novice, first preliminary adult, second preliminary novice, second preliminary adult, first intermediate, second intermediate, first advanced, second advanced, first professional, and second professional, in addition to Grand Prize professional, which features four horses of the finest European breeds, competing for the 10 cups.
Horse dressage competitions attract significant interest from riders across the UAE. It is an Olympic sport that offers a platform for them to demonstrate their mastery of the techniques, and compete to showcase their skills and abilities in horse training.