QREC Chairman Issa bin Mohamed al-Mohannadi
Khalifa bin Sheail al-Kuwari-owned Lady Princess
ParisLongchamp 02/10/2022, photo: Zuzanna Lupa
The countdown for Qatar Racing and Equestrian Club (QREC)-sponsored Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe has begun with thrilling races on the cards at the weekend.
The annual event, held at ParisLongchamp racecourse, is one of the most important and prestigious horse racing events in the world given the tradition it enjoys and the distinction that is unique to it, whether in terms of its history or the level of competition among the world’s major owners, trainers and jockeys known in the world.
The Qatari sponsorship of the meeting has represented an added value as reflected in the intensive media coverage, the huge presence of racegoers and top racing since the beginning of the sponsorship in 2008.
The partnership between QREC and France Galop, the authority responsible for organising this event, continues, which has resulted in the partnership being extended more than once.
Last year, it was announced that the partnership would be extended with effect from the current year until 2027. In addition, five million Euros as prize money are on offer in the weekend’s main event, the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe.
This event will be held from September 28 to October 1, with a large number of international runners. As usual, dozens of TV sports and horseracing channels will have live coverage of the event and dozens of thousands of racegoers will be at ParisLongchamp for the world’s horseracing extravaganza, especially on the final day of the meeting. The QREC management are prepared for the upcoming event through continuous co-ordination with France Galop and ensuring that all arrangements have been completed, including agreements with the sponsors, including Qatar Airways and Longines, who are among the most important partners of success with QREC in recent years, given their valuable ongoing co-operation in supporting and sponsoring QREC’s events both at home and overseas.
Speaking on the occasion, QREC Chairman Issa bin Mohamed al-Mohannadi, said: “We are ready for an ideal start for this distinguished race meeting, which we all await every year. We seek a strong Qatari presence through Qatari owners’ vying for the titles of several races, especially with the expected strong Qatari participation of horse owners who seek to confirm their merit with their eyes set on winning the races where they will be represented. The Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe has become a milestone in the world’s horseracing scene at this time every year thanks to its top international reputation and elevated level of organisation. This, in fact, increases the scale of challenge in every edition of the meeting and we look forward to to continuing to achieve the goals we aspire to.”
Al-Mohannadi added: “The Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe weekend represents a remarkable opportunity to market the HH The Amir Sword Festival as one of the most important racing events organised by QREC, which is held annually and attracts international runners and connections, especially after increasing its prize money and with the dedicated efforts for the continuous development of the festival. In addition, it promotes Qatar’s horseracing worldwide and contributes to activating the sponsorship goals of promoting Qatar in general and Qatar’s horseracing in particular and focusing attention on the HH The Amir Sword Festival as the most prestigious event in QREC’s racing calendar.”
It is worth noting that the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe will be held over four days through several events. The beginning will be next Thursday with the Arqana Purebred Horse sale where a distinguished group of horses will be on display in the presence of major owners and breeders around the world.
The next day, a race meeting will be held at the Saint-Cloud racecourse with nine races, including the two feature races of the day, the Gr1/PA Qatar Arabian Trophy Des Poulains and the Gr1/PA Qatar Arabian Trophy Des Pouliches. There will a strong Qatari representation in both races with hopes to continue Qatari-owned horses’ dominance on both races. Saturday will mark the kick off racing at ParisLongchamp with nine races, including six group races with three of them on the highest level: namely, the Gr1/PA Qatar Arabian Trophy Des Juments (4-year-old fillies), the Gr1 Qatar Prix De Royallieu and the Gr1 Qatar Prix Du Cadran.
On Sunday, the finale will have a nine race-card, featuring seven group one races, including the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, which carries a purse of five million Euros, and the Qatar Arabian World Cup.
The 2022 renewal of Qatar Arabian World Cup saw 16 runners, including nine for Qatari owners and the winner was Lady Princess (General x Nacree Al Maury) in the colours of Khalifa bin Sheail al-Kuwari for trainer Thomas Fourcy and jockey Jim Crowley.
Runners from France, UK, Ireland, Germany, Japan and Qatar were in contention in last year’s Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe and the winner was the Kirsten Rausing-owned Alpinista (Frankel x Alwilda) for trainer Sir Mark Prescott and jockey Luke Morris.