The UK season for the Dubai International Arabian Races (DIAR) kicked off at Newbury in Berkshire last month. The first of five UK prep races, the DIAR 2019 Sprint Stakes was a conditions event over 6f. Newbury will also host three further prep races, two over 1m2f for 4yos and up, plus one confined to 3yos over 7f. The prep series are staged to encourage participation at the Dubai International Arabian Races at Newbury in July and winners and placed horses in each of the designated prep races across Europe will qualify for a bonus. The DIAR 2019 Sprint Stakes was won by Kao Kat MHF ridden by Sean Levey for Beverley Deutrom and her Pharitz Arabians.
She was also responsible for the second, Storm Troupour, ridden by amateur jockey, David Turner. Mith’haf Athbah, trained by Phil Collington, and Tadhg O’Shea were third for Athbah Racing KSA. Though now a 10yo, Kao Kat MHF showed he still retains plenty of ability as he is a previous course winner of the Group 2 Royal Cavalry of Oman Clarendon Stakes over 5f in 2016, and was also second that year to Radames in the Group 1 Jebel Ali Racecourse Za’abeel Stakes. He is also a former DIAR winner too, as he won the NAIP Handicap, traditionally the last race on the DIAR card, in 2015.
Deutrom was naturally very proud of both her horses saying: “I’ve always known that Kao Kat was a good horse. He had a splint last year, which held him back on the firm ground, so we’ve just had to wait with him. He’s very game and I’m really pleased with the race he ran today.” Deutrom’s success reflects the truly international flavour of DIAR, as she trains in the UK, though frequently spends winters with a small team in Dubai. Kao Kat MHF ran six times in the UAE during 2o14, finishing second twice. Both first and second here are American bred but sired by French stallions who stood in the USA under the Shadwell Arabian Stallions banner in Kaolino and Nivour De Cardonne.
The DIAR 2019 Sprint Stakes is the UK prep race for the Jebel Ali Racecourse Za’abeel International run over 6f, one of three Group One PA races that take place on the big DIAR card. The DIAR prep series then moved on to Sweden, to Bro Park Racecourse on the outskirts of Stockholm on Sunday 16 June. The ten-race mixed card of Purebred Arabian and Thoroughbred races included the Group 3 DIAR Stockholm Arabian Cup, staged under the DIAR banner since 2016, as well as the Swedish 1000 and 2000 Guineas, and the Group 3 Stockholm Stora Pris for Thoroughbreds. The feature race was the 1800m Group 3 DIAR Stockholm Arabian Cup which produced a terrific finish with barely a length covering the three horses at the line.
Ayman ridden by Fedrik Janetzky prevailed by half a length from early leader Salam Al Kalediah, with Jaldi Karo just a short head away in third. Both Ayman and Jaldi Karo are trained by Maria Hagman-Eriksson who, overjoyed with her two horses, said: “It’s unbelievable, I’m so happy. Of course I would like to come to Newbury with Ayman. He’s a really nice horse. I acquired him when he just turned four last season and he won five races for me. This is his second win this year.” The meeting opened with the UAE Embassy Trophy Stakes, a handicap over 1200m for 4yos and up, won in impressive style by 4yo colt Assuan, ridden by Elione Chaves who finished well clear of Poloniz and Afja’an. Trained by Camilla Nilsson who had only taken over training the colt in December for Abdulla Al Mansoori, he delighted the handler who said: “He is a tough horse and he’s brave.
He is progressing well, the first race he ran for me was over 2100m and the trip was too far but over 1200m to 1600m like today, that suits him well. I will look at the race conditions for DIAR at Newbury now, we may find a race for him there, we’ll see.” The DIAR International Fillies & Mares Conditions Stakes was run over 1600m for 3yos and up. The crowd were treated to another close finish with Cleopathre just winning by a head in a photo, from Anood Al Kahlediah. Ridden by Andreas Tapia Dalbark for owner and trainer Annalie Kristina Eriksson, this was a second win for the 5yo mare. Eriksson is a very dedicated handler as she explained: “I train three hours north from here, but come to Bro Park to do all their fast work. I only have two horses in training, this one and Eastway who ran in the Stockholm Cup. I will definitely look at the DIAR races and hopefully I will bring her to Newbury in July.”