His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Khalifa al-Thani and trainer Julian Smart celebrated a fourth straight HH The Amir Sword (Group 1 PA) victory with Ebraz winning the million-dollar Purebred Arabian feature in scintillating fashion, even as Olivier Peslier and French King ensured His Highness Sheikh Abdullah bin Khalifa al-Thani lifted HH The Amir Trophy (Group 1) after a gap of six years.
In the Al Hazm-sponsored finale, Smart’s other ward, Aaley Al Magam lit up the course in the 2400m Arabian feature early on, with Umm Qarn’s Yazeed following not too far behind under Peslier. As Alban de Mieulle’s charge took the advantage on the way home, Smart’s two-time winner Gazwan couldn’t keep up, and it was left to Maxime Guyon-ridden Ebraz to chase the leader down. And chase he did as the six-year-old went past Yazeed for his second victory in the race.
“It’s a great weekend of racing, but for me, personally, pressure is immense. But it is also pressure I give myself, you know. Everybody expects the horses to perform, and luckily they do more often than not,” Smart said after the victory, which is his seventh in Qatar’s flagship Arabian race.
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