Top riders for Dh2m Dubai showjumping championship

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January-17: Dubai: The internationally acclaimed Dubai Show Jumping Championship (DSJC), which boasts an increased prize fund of Dh2 million, will be held from January 18-20 at the Dubai Equestrian Club (DEC).

The Emirates Equestrian Centre (EEC) announced that the Championship is now classed as a CSI5* W (World Cup Qualifier) event, the highest level of international show-jumping worldwide.

The Five Start status means that best and top-ranked riders will compete at the event which will also include CSI2* classes.

Dubai’s top showjumpers Abdullah Mohammad Al Marri and Arif Ahmad Jassim Ahli will be seen in action, aiming to qualify for the Dubai Grand Prix; Ahmad Nabil Falaknaz will be gearing up for the CSI2* classes.

The three-day Festival is highlighted by the Dh406,866 Longines — FEI World Cup Qualifier, which is a qualifier for the Dubai Grand Prix, the Dh110,439 Gulf News Cup and the newly added Dh406,866 Azizi Golden Cup, one of four add-ons to the programme, taking the total number of classes up to 11 from seven last year. This includes six CSI5* classes, and five CSI2* classes, the opening five star event in the competition is the Meydan Welcome Stakes on Thursday.

The addition to the last day of competition is the Dubai Equestrian Club Grand Prix, worth Dh132,188. All these classes lead up to the finale — the Dh635,266 Emirates Airline Dubai Grand Prix. Challengers, who are successful at the Grand Prix, stand to earn valuable points towards qualifying for the Longines FEI World CupTM Jumping and the FEI World Equestrian Games.

Azizi Developments joins long-time EEC partners and fellow Meydan Pillar Partners Emirates airline, Longines and Gulf News in supporting this prominent international competition.

Shaikh Majid Al Mualla, Emirates’ Divisional Senior Vice-President, Commercial Operations Centre said: “Emirates has a long-standing relationship with equestrian sports and the Dubai Show Jumping Championship demonstrates our commitment to supporting this graceful display of equestrian showmanship.”

Walter von Känel, President of Longines, commented: “We are very proud to be the official partner and official timekeeper of the 2018 Dubai Show Jumping Championship, one of the greatest show-jumping events in the Middle East and a Longines FEI World Cup Show Jumping qualifier.

“This association fits perfectly in our global involvement and long-lasting passion for equestrian sports. In addition, Longines has become in the last 140 years the main partner of international institutions and events in the disciplines of horse racing, show jumping, eventing, endurance, dressage and driving. We are pleased to be able to rely on long-term partnerships including the ones with Meydan and the International Equestrian Federation (FEI).

Rajeev Khanna, Commercial Director, Gulf News added: “We have been associated with the Dubai Show Jumping Championship since its inception and are truly delighted that it is now acclaimed as a CS15*W event. We take pride in our support of this internationally acclaimed event, which provides three days of exceptional equine displays from the topmost local and international competitors“.

Mirwais Azizi, Chairman, Azizi Group, who have pledged their support to the event starting this year said: “We are proud to support the Dubai Show Jumping Championship as part of our ongoing partnership with Meydan. The tournament attracts leading talent from around the world and plays an integral part in positioning Dubai on the world map for sporting events. Azizi Developments remains committed to enhancing the Emirate’s (Dubai) image by continually supporting world-class events.”

Dubai Equestrian Club General Manager Mohammad Eisa Al Adhab said: “We are very proud to be hosting the CSI5*W Dubai Show Jumping Championship. We are especially thankful to our sponsors for their continued support. Showjumping is a progressive sport, and the UAE team has returned some remarkable results in the past year, including a win in the Challenge Cup at the FEI Nations Cup Jumping Final in Barcelona in October 2017. We expect some great results at the DSJC in January and look forward to an exciting and memorable competition.”

Held over three days, the event offers fun-filled days of activity for the family at the purpose-built Emirates Equestrian Centre, with a distinctive festive flavour for children, featuring bouncy castles, pony rides and face painting stations.

 Courtesy: Gulf News

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