(MENAFN- The Peninsula) The Peninsula
Doha, Qatar: Three days of top international racing thrill is on the cards as the highly-anticipated Qatar Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe weekend kicks off at Saint Cloud today.
This event is held under Qatari sponsorship through the Qatar Racing and Equestrian Club (QREC) un-der the agreement signed with France Galop, the horse racing authority in France.
This year's renewal is expected to see strong contention among the runners, especially in the feature races, including the Gr1 Qatar Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe race, which has a total prize money of €5m on offer.
The weekend started with Arqana Purebred Arabian Horse Sale yesterday
The events associated with the prestigious weekend began yesterday with the Arqana Purebred Arabian Horse Sale in presence of a remarkable number of horse owners and trainers from several coun-tries, given the high quality of the lots on display, as well as the QREC delegation.
The sale acquires extra significance being held just before the start of the race days at both Saint Cloud and ParisLong-champ.
According to the program of events, the three days of racing will begin today at Saint Cloud.
Then, the racing action will move to ParisLongchamp tomorrow and Sunday, where dozens of thousands of race-goers will fill the stands.
The features of today's meeting will be the Qatar Arabian Trophy des Poulains (colts) and the Qatar Arabian Trophy des Pouliches (fillies).
Each of the twoGr.1 PA contests are for three-year-olds and will be run over 2000m. Runners and jockeys have been declared for each race.
As many as 12 colts and geldings will run in the Qatar Arabian Trophy des Poulains Gr.1 PA, including three for Al Shaqab Racing: Afjan, Al Zwairand Shemlwol, who will be partnered by Faleh Bughenaim. The trio will try to make it a second consecutive win for their owner.
In the Qatar Arabian Trophy des Pouliches Gr.1 PA, 15 fillies have been declared, including the Group 3 winner Asslan Al Shahania running in the silks of H E Sheika Yasmeen bint Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Thani, Divana Chica presented by Thomas Fourcy and running in the colours of Wathnan Racing, and the two Al Shaqab Racing fillies Anasheed and Norma Al Maury.
These two races have crowned champions, such as last year's winners Al Ghadeer and Nour Al Maury, who will line for the Qatar Arabian World Cup on Sunday.
In the Qatar Arabian Trophy des Juments, nine 4-year-old fillies have been declared, including Qatar Cup - Prix Dragon Gr.1 winner Ghadah, and Group winner Mezon - both of whom carry the silks of Al Shaqab Racing.
Also lining up is Gorat Aeen for trainer François Rohaut in the colours of H E Sheikha Reem bint Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Thani as well as No Tear Al Maury in the colours of Khalifa bin Sheail Al Kuwari. Which one of these nine 4-year-old mares will take the crown of Sahab, last year winner.
On Sunday, attention will turn towards the final day of the Qatar Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe weekend, with seven Gr1 races in the nine-race card, including the Qatar Arabian World Cup (Gr1 PA) and the best horse race in the world, the Qatar Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe (Gr1).
15 horses will go under starters orders in the Qatar Prix de l'Arc de Triomphewith Jean-Claude Rouget counting on this years' favorite Ace Impact in stall number 8.
British trained raider Hukum has inhe-rited stall number 14, Simca Mille number 15, Feed The Flame number 2, Westover number 1 and Al Shaqab Racing's representative Place Du Carrousel 11, who will carry the hopes of repeating the victories of the legendary Treve.
Qatar Arabian World Cup
The Qatar Arabian World Cup Gr1 PA has some of the world's best Arabians, including H H Sheikh Ab-dullah bin Khalifa Al Thani's Al Doha, who will be saddled by Thomas Fourcy, Wathnan Racing's Abbes, who is under the care of Alban de Mieulle, Noora Racing's First Classs for trainer Jean de Mieulle, Al Shaqab Racing's Nour Al Maury's who will another trainee of Fourcy in the race, Al Shaqab Racing's Al Ghadeer representing trainer Francois Rohaut, Khalifa Bin Sheail Al Kuwari's Hadi De Carrere and Moshrif, who will be adding to Fourcy's grip, and Abdulla Bin Fahad Al Attiyah's owned and Francois Rohaut-trained CH'EZZA.
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