A rider in action.
As the competitions head into the final three weeks of the show jumping season, the nationals move to the Sharjah Equestrian and Racing Club (SERC) starting on Thursday.
Held under the supervision of the UAE Equestrian and Racing Federation (UAEERF), this two-day event will be the first of three nationals held in Sharjah. For the remainder of the season, the shows will be held in the club’s indoor and outdoor arenas.
This week’s show will boast of 11 classes to cater to a variety of riders and horses – Advanced riders (Division 1), Amateurs (Division 2 & Novice Division), Juniors (riders between 14 – 18 years old), Children (riders below the age of 14) and Young Horses (4 – 5 & 5 -6 years old).
Thursday will feature five classes – two in the outdoor arena and three in the indoor – with two classes of One Round not Against the Clock for the Novice Division as well as for Novices, Children and Young Horses (4-5 year-olds).
In the indoor arena, three one Round Against the Clock competitions will take place for Young Horses (5-6 year-olds), Junior Riders and Division 2 riders as well as two classes for Division 1 riders.
The remaining six classes will take place on Friday starting at 1:30pm and will see riders competing in classes of One Round not Against the Clock, Two Phase, and One Round with Jump-off with the maximum height set at 140cm. All riders will be competing for their share of a prize purse of Dhs140,000.
The competitions will be supervised by Hussam Zummit, who represents the UAEERF, with Lisa Hareb serving as Ground Jury President, with the assistance from other jury members. International course designer, Marc Debaere, designed this show’s course, with help from other course designers.
Sultan Khalifa Al Yahya’ie, Director General of Sharjah Equestrian and Racing Club, said: The event will help in promoting the talents of Emirati riders.”
Last month Dubai hosted the last major show jumping competition of the season — the 21st edition of the Emirates Championship.
Sharjah Equestrian and Racing Club's Salim Khamis Al Suwaidi aboard Espresso won the championship.
This competition showcased 15 classes over three days at the Emirates Equestrian Centre in Dubai.
The last time Sharjah won the league was in 1995-1996, and it was their fifth
Both Shabab Al Ahli and Sharjah did try to break the deadlock but the former were more aggressive as they created more chances in the first-half.
The final UAE fixture of 2019 took place at Sharjah Longines Racecourse on Saturday and was highlighted by the The Crown Prince of Sharjah Cup, a 1200m Prestige contest for which only those foaled in the UAE are eligible.
“To all my friends in Dubai and the UAE, this is a really difficult moment and we need to take care of us and others as well,” said Figo.
“It was a great relief to see him deliver last start after the trouble he’d encountered at his previous two,” said trainer James Cummings.
The Premier League has been postponed until at least April 30 because of the pandemic and it is feared the season will be delayed again when English football’s stakeholders meet to discuss the crisis on Friday.