THE 2018/19 ENDURANCE season is set to get even more interesting according to the man running the show behind the scenes. Mohammed Essa Al Adhab, the general manager of Dubai Equestrian Club, believes the forthcoming season starting this weekend with the CEN 100km Seeh Al Salam Endurance Challenge and the CEN 100km Al Wasl Endurance Ride for Private Stables will be one where a whole lot of new ideas will find their way into the sport. “Newer technologies are to be introduced this season and we are planning to make the events organised by us more environmentally friendly as well, so there’s a lot of new things that will be set in motion through this season, including the way the competitions are fought,” Al Adhab told Al Adiyat.
For a long time, the UAE has been one of the most lucrative places to compete, with big prize purses luring competitors from around the world and Al Adhab feels despite the tightly run calendar, all systems are ready to go. Speaking on the sidelines of a qualifier event at the Dubai International Endurance Centre (DIEC) last week, he added: “We are expecting a strong season with a large number of riders and horses participating. The presence of so many teams at this qualifier event shows that the stables and riders are ready for the season. “We have one of the shortest seasons in the world because of the weather. It is a very tight schedule that we run because of the number of events and a lot of our events are of the highest quality.
The competition is intense because the season is fought keenly by all of the stables involved and this makes things exciting all the way to the end.” And while organisers are ready to put on a show, stables participating in the season have also signalled their readiness. Mohammed Al Subose, the head trainer of M7 Stables, said his agenda is to finish at the top yet again. “This is the third year for M7 Stables. In the first year, our target was to be the best stable in the UAE and we achieved that. In the second year, our target was to defend the title and we did that; this year, the target is to conquer again. We need to hold on to our rank; that’s our goal,” Al Subose said. “We have horses with experience and some new horses too that are coming back.
There are some really talented and experienced riders in the UAE, but we are especially lucky to have this group. This is the best team I can have.” Rashed Mugheer Al Amimi, trainer at Al Mugheer Private Stables, is keen on progressing in terms of results. “We are happy with preparations so far. For smaller stables like ours and private owners, it’s a matter of making sure things improve and taking that step up. We hope to be one of the stables that is fighting at the end of the season,” he said. Ali Al Muhairi, chief trainer of Dubawi Stables, is also keen to get going. He said: “We have prepared well and strengthened our stable with new additions from South Africa. “We have had many good results with horses from South Africa in the past and so our boss, HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Maktoum, asked us to get more.
“We have a good group of riders, women and men, and our training process is to ride and train on the same horse a rider will ride during the season as it helps them build a relationship with the horses. So we are geared up and are waiting to go.”