Author: Duane Fonseca
KUWAITI OWNER Abdulmohsen Al Abdukareem could receive a Group Three reward at Meydan this Thursday night for his patience over the years. Abdulmohsen prized success so far has been Al Tariq’s success in the Listed Jebel Ali Sprint, but all that could change with the Doug Watson-schooled 5yo Oasis Dream gelding entered in the 1200m Al Shindagha Sprint on dirt. Al Tariq should find this assignment a lot easier than the gruelling climbing finish on Jebel Ali’s testing dirt track and should handle the extra 200m without much fuss.
Irrespective of the result, Abdulmohsen is happy to be finally punching with the heavyweights. The Jebel Ali Sprint was the biggest victory to date for his orange and white silks, but it’s definitely not his last. Abdulmohsen has long been involved in UAE racing after the Emirates was recommended to him by compatriot Rashid Bouresly, himself an owner and trainer with a fair bit of success here.
He has a long lasting relationship with trainer Doug Watson that dates back to the 2006/07 season, with the American having saddled all five winners he’s enjoyed so far. This relationship is clearly valued by both parties, with Watson expressing how much it meant to him to have a big winner for an owner who has remained loyal to him for 15 years. For his part, Abdulmohsen is content with dealing solely with Watson.
He admits the pair are close friends. Abdulmohsen said: “Watson doesn’t sugarcoat anything, if a horse has potential he lets me know and if otherwise, he knows what steps are necessary and what is realistic, he truly cares for these horses”. Born into a family with a deep love for horses, it was easy for Abdulmohsen to get into the sport. He started riding early and was a jockey in Kuwait, before moving on to training and owning horses there.
However, Kuwait’s under developed racing culture forced him to pay the UAE his undivided attention. “My father owned horses, and his father before him owned horses as well, you can say that I have inherited this love and my children have too,” explained Abdulmohsen, whose Kuwaiti trainer’s licence had dated back to 1992.
“Even though Kuwait was one of the first countries to create a racecourse in the region, that hasn’t led to the proper development of the racing scene there.” In 2004, he decided to stop training and took Bouresly’s advice on moving to the UAE and hasn’t looked back since. Redden provided him a first UAE success in a Sharjah maiden in 2011, while Galvanize helped him score twice at Meydan when claiming successive wins in late 2017, before he was sold to Hamed Radan.
Abdulmohsen nailed another maiden at Al Ain in 2019 with Alda’iya, leaving Abu Dhabi as the only UAE racecourse where he is yet to win. Abdulmohsen has three horses in training. His pair of 3yos, Uncle Hamed, named after his late uncle, has run well every other time he’s been dispatched with two runners-up spots in four starts, while Al Murqab is yet to deliver despite his choice pedigree.
Al Tariq is eldest of the trio at five and won a race in France in 2019 for former trainer Pia Brandt. He was bought in February last year and appears in good form in the UAE, debuting in March with a second in a handicap at Jebel Ali. He made his seasonal bow at Meydan in January when a distant fifth in a handicap behind stable companion Golden Goal, but returned to Jebel Ali to deliver Abdulmohsen his biggest success to date in the Sprint. Time will reveal if he can handle even bigger things, like this step up in class in different surroundings.