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Grand Prix - Round III
Images by Merri Melde

Grand Prix - Round III
Images by Merri Melde
Results, Round III:
Start List || Gate 1 || Gate 2 || Gate 3 || Gate 4 || Finish || Eliminations
Fact Sheet ||Speed Chart

Round III, Merri:

Gallery 1

Gallery 2

Gallery 3

Gallery 4
Round III, M. Dashty

Round 3 by Royal Bahrain Endurance Team photographer Osama Hassan

Grand Prix Series: Final points standings:

Final points standings after the three rounds of the Grand Prix - Giants Endurance Challenge series:

Round III standings:

  • - Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum (Tahhan) 4hrs 52 mins 31 secs
  • - Shaikh Hamdan Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum (Garaman Mikado) 4:52.32
  • - Mubarak Abdullah Al Beloushi (Estaban) 5:01.06
  • - Buti Mohammad Khalifa Al Marri (Aratahnes Legend) 5:06.50
  • - Shaikh mayed Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum (Hungares) 5:07.20
  • - Shaikh Nasser Bin Hamad Al Khalifa (Omsura Nasrohn) 5:09.38

  • Khaleej Times Online: Mohammed wins Giants Endurance Challenge

    Mohammad wins Giants Endurance
    By M. Satya Narayan, Senior Reporter
    Published: February 28, 2009, 19:47

    Dubai: It was a remarkable display of horsemanship by His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai as he negotiated the dusty 'sohaili' winds, the rising temperature and a distance of 120-kms to win the third leg of the Giants Endurance Challenge and emerge overall champion.

    Shaikh Mohammad, who rode 9-year-old chestnut gelding Tahhan, the same horse on which he won the second leg in Bahrain, finished a second ahead of Shaikh Hamdan Bin Mohammad Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince riding Garaman Mikado.

    With his second consecutive win for which Shaikh Mohammad earned 100 points each and with his 5th place finish in the first leg held in Abu Dhabi's Al Wathba for which he got 50 points and a bonus of ten points for riding the same horse. This gave him an overall tally of 250 points, much ahead of Shaikh Nasser Bin Hamad Al Khalifa of Bahrain, who finished sixth on Saturday to take his tally to 190 with Shaikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Presidential Affairs (who made an early exit on Saturday ) and Shaikh Hamdan finishing joint third with 150 points each.

    After Mubarak Khalifa Bin Shafya had led in the first two stages of 32kms and 27kms on Saturday , Shaikh Mohammad on Tahhan led from the third loop and won convincingly though the dusty winds on the Seih Assalam desert routes made visibility poor while the rising temperatures also took its toll on many a participant.

    Shaikh Mohammad and Tahhan completed the 120-km distance in 4 hours 52 minutes and 31 seconds with an average speed of 24.61 kmph.

    His Majesty the King of Bahrain, Shaikh Hamad Bin Eissa Al Khalifa who gave away the Golden Sword and the Gold Kanjar to Shaikh Mohammad at the prize distribution said, "Shaikh Mohammad's win is a victory for all riders. He is very experienced and fully deserves to win."

    "The UAE has always been supportive of endurance in other Gulf countries. The difference between the UAE and other countries in endurance is that the speed here is very high," Shaikh Hamad said.

    Shaikh Mohammad said it was a tough ride and the conditions were challenging. "But our riders do have the experience to handle them. It was the 'Sohaili' winds today and the sand storm did make it difficult for the horses. My horse Tahhan was in good shape and was always in good condition through the ride. He has been training well and today he was good," Shaikh Mohammad said.

    Shaikh Hamdan, who had finished third in Bahrain and earned 70 points for that, added another 80 points to his tally with his second place finish today. "The penultimate stage was very tough but my horse managed to stay fit and I am glad with this result," he said.

    Khaleej Times Online Mohammed wins Giants Endurance Challenge Hisham Al Gizouli, 28 February 2009

    SEI ASSALAM (Dubai) — His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, partnered eight-year-old Tahhan to glory in the final leg of the Giants Endurance Challenge at Seih Assalam Endurance City on Saturday. Photo: Khaleej Times

    The UAE riders swept the first five positions as Bahrain’s Shaikh Nasser bin Hamad Al Khalifa finished sixth to walk away with the second place honours in the overall standing of the competition.

    Shaikh Mohammed was crowned Champion of the Giants Endurance Challenge Grand Prix after having won the second leg in Bahrain and finishing fifth in the first race at Al Wathba International Endurance Village in December. The leading international horse owner, breeder and rider finished just ahead of his son Shaikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, when the two riders crossed the finish line hand in hand with the UAE flag flying overhead.

    Tahhan is trained by Abdullah Saeed bin Huzaim at Emaar Endurance Stables owned by Shaikh Mohammed.“My horse has been well prepared for the race after receiving a perfect dose of training. The only problem was the sand storm and the dust which has adversely affected the overall speed of the race. But in all cases, it is an endurance race which tests the stamina of both the horse and its rider,” Shaikh Mohammed said.

    The race was attended by His Majesty King Hamad bin Eisa Al Khalifa of Bahrain, Shaikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and UAE Minister of Finance, and a number of Shaikhs and top officials and a large number of spectators who came to enjoy the race.

    Bahrain’s King praised the hard work of Shaikh Mohammed who is behind all the success achieved by this fast growing sport. He also described Shaikh Mohammed in a brief TV interview as a man of vision and forward thinking.

    Shaikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum heaped praise on Shaikh Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Maktoum for the manner in which he handled Garaman Micado, who is still new and needed to be ridden with care. Shaikh Hamdan rode 11-year-old Garaman Mikado from the stables of Shaikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s Seeh Al Salam Endurance Stables whose horse are trained and prepared by Ali Mohammed Al Muhairi.

    Competitors from different parts of the world took part in the competition with 41 riders skirting the sand hills under the early rays of the sun in the final leg of the Triple Crown contest. The 120km CEI Giants Endurance Challenge was a tough test for the riders and their horses as well after the sandstorm which hit the country from early in the morning.

    The pre-race weather forecast reading was clear vision with the temperature up to 38 degrees centigrade and the wind speed 28km/hr SSW in the early morning to increase to 28k/hr in the afternoon.But the riders had to find their way through the dust as the vision was decreased to less than 20 metres in some areas. More than 10 riders were either eliminated or retired between the first two Vet Gates which underlines the difficult weather conditions that forced quarter of the field to quit in the early stages of the race. Shaikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Presidential Affairs, who was a front-runner for the title was eliminated between Gate 1 and 2. He told Dubai Racing Channel that he was unlucky and God be with the others. Shaikh Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Maktoum was also quoted by the TV commentator as saying Shaikh Mansour’s horse Eo Jaras was not in its best form. “The indications on the day before the race were not positive, but Shaikh Mansour decided to take the risk.”

    Bahrain rider Shaikh Salman bin Saqr Al Khalifa was among the first batch of those eliminated in the opening phases of the gruelling race.