WITH the starting gate positions for the 14 horses determined by random selection yesterday at an elaborate ‘Post Position Draw’ ceremony at the Four Seasons Hotel Bahrain Bay’s Beach Deck, the stage is set for tomorrow’s historic race for the Bahrain International Trophy.
The biggest horse race to be held in Bahrain will kick off at 4.35pm tomorrow at the Rashid Equestrian Horse Racing Club in Sakhir.
The colourful function yesterday witnessed for the first time the owners, trainers, jockeys and racetrack officials together and provided a glimpse of what is in store on race day.
Nine of the 14 entries are world-class horses with proven pedigrees having won major titles in Europe and they are Intellogent (IRE), Mountain Angel (IRE), Turgenev (GB), Pivoine (IRE), Afaak (GB), Royal Julius (IRE), Coolagh Forest (IRE), Sword Peinture (GER) and Aquarium (GB). All are rated at or above 95 by their domestic authority, with six rated 106 and over.
They will be joined by five local entries - Vale Do Sol, Thorkhill Star, Euginioto, Rustang and Proposed - to give the race a touch of local flavour.
The occasion also featured the grand unveiling of the Bahrain International Trophy, designed and handcrafted from sterling silver and mahogany by legendary jewellers House of Garrard.
The ‘Post Position Draw’ was presented by renowned TV racing presenter Nick Luck along with noted horse racing announcer Mark Johnson.
“Attracting so many top owners, trainers, jockeys and horses for our first international race has exceeded our expectations and means a lot for Bahrain, but I am sure this is only the beginning of a successful journey to establish our country in the racing calendar,” said Rashid Equestrian and Horseracing Club (REHC) executive director Shaikh Salman bin Rashed Al Khalifa.
Shaikh Salman also paid tribute to REHC’s local partners – Gulf Air, Bapco and Batelco – and to those associated with managing the racecourse.
“Everyone involved in making the race meeting happen has worked from the heart,” Shaikh Salman added.
The event was attended by High Committee deputy chairman of REHC Shaikh Isa bin Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Minister of Oil Shaikh Mohammed bin Khalifa bin Ahmed Al Khalifa, representatives from one of the race partners Batelco, as well as owners, trainers, jockeys, grooms and members of international and local media.
Call 17 440 330 for more information.