Best Come Together For CHI Al Shaqab 2019 91 riders and 139 horses from 23 nations to participate in Al Shaqab’s signature event
The world’s best riders and horses are primed to put on a thrilling display of power and grace at CHI AL SHAQAB 2019, which will take place from Thursday March 7 to Saturday March 9, at Al Shaqab, member of Qatar Foundation.
Doha, March 6 – The world’s best riders and horses are primed to put on a thrilling display of power and grace at CHI AL SHAQAB 2019, which will take place from Thursday March 7 to Saturday March 9, at Al Shaqab, member of Qatar Foundation.
CHI stands for Concours Hippique International or “Equestrian International Competition”, and the spectacular CHI AL SHAQAB 2019 will see 91 riders and 139 horses from 23 nations participate in the event, which Al Shaqab is organizing for the sixth time.
They will compete in the Olympic equestrian disciplines of Showjumping, Dressage, and Para Dressage during CHI AL SHAQAB 2019 - the only equestrian competition of its kind in the Middle East and Asia region.
Several top-ranking athletes from both Qatar and around the world will be competing for the highly coveted titles on offer at CHI AL SHAQAB 19. They include Sheikh Ali bin Khalid Al Thani (Qatar), Bassem Mohammed (Qatar), Julien Epaillard (France), Emily Moffitt (UK) Pius Schwizer (SUI), Daniel Deusser (GER), Edwina Tops-Alexander (Aus) and BenMaher (UK).
The Asian Equestrian Federation (AEF) General Assembly is taking place at Al Shaqab on March 6, with Hamad bin Abdulrahman Al-Attiyah, President of both the Qatar Equestrian Federation and the Asian Equestrian Federation, standing for re-election.
At a press conference on Tuesday March 5 to officially launch CHI Al SHAQAB 2019,
Al-Attiyah said: “I would like to extend my deep gratitude to His Highness Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani the Father Emir, who laid the foundation for the development of equestrian sport in Qatar. I would also like to thank His Excellency Sheikh Joaan bin Hamad Al Thani, Chairman of CHI AL SHAQAB and President of the Qatar Olympic Committee. CHI AL SHAQAB is the first and only equestrian event of its kind in the Middle East and Asia region.
“I would also like to extend my appreciation to Al Shaqab for hosting outstanding riders in this great facility and for working in cooperation with the Qatar Equestrian Federation. The results are already bearing fruit – besides encouraging them to aspire towards higher goals, there has been a marked increase in the quality of our riders.
“The meeting of the Asian Equestrian Federation, which is happening along the sidelines of CHI AL SHAQAB 2019, is a very important addition to the agenda, as the elections will be held for the important positions such as that of President and Vice President.
“The close cooperation between the Qatar Equestrian Federation and AEF is also very important. While our senior riders have come a long way, the upcoming young riders will benefit greatly from this partnership.
“The goal of the Federation is to train young boys and girls to the highest possible level of horse riding. We are also looking to support them financially and provide training camps. In addition to showjumping, we aim to train our young riders in the discipline of dressage – a discipline that follows a certain rhythm - as it is quite popular at the Asian Federation level.”
Omar Al Mannai, CHI AL SHAQAB 2019 Event Director and Al Shaqab Commercial Manager, said: “Al Shaqab is extremely proud to be organizing CHI Al SHAQAB for the sixth time. This prestigious and world-class equestrian event has continued to grow in terms of popularity and success since the first CHI AL SHAQAB was held in 2013.
“CHI AL SHAQAB has placed Qatar on the world’s equestrian map, and Al Shaqab’s successful organizing of the event has boosted Qatar’s status as an international sports destination. The event also showcases Al Shaqab as a premier international equestrian competition venue, capable of attracting the world’s top-ranking riders in three Olympic equestrian disciplines.
Commenting on Para Dressage as a part of CHI AL SHAQAB 2019, and the ability of Al Shaqab as a venue to accommodate the discipline, Al Mannai said: “Para Dressage is a discipline that allows for fair competition and creates the opportunity for riders of all skills to achieve their goals in equestrian sport. There is a demand from this segment of our population to incorporate Para Dressage in our event. This is the third year Al Shaqab will be including this important Olympic discipline in the event and our facilities are geared to meet the needs of the participants.
“Some of the world’s best riders are in this category. This includes a high-level performer from Saudi Arabia who has competed in the past. These are great role models who are very inspiring. We look forward to seeing Qatari riders participating in this discipline in the future.”
The Hathab Series, which is aimed at improving the standard of horse riding among Qatari youth, will be part of CHI AL SHAQAB 2019. Ali Al Rumaihi, Hathab Event Director, said: “This series, which targets the development of the next generation of equestrian champions, will have its 9th round at CHI Al SHAQAB 2019. The riders will be inspired by being in the presence of world-class athletes from Qatar and around the world.”
Also standing for re-election at the General Assembly is Badr Al Darwish, who is Secretary General of both the Qatar Equestrian Federation and the Asian Equestrian Federation.
Al Darwish said: “As Doha will host the AEF General Assembly at AL Shaqab, it will be the focus of Asian equestrian sport.”
To ensure an ongoing festival atmosphere of fun and entertainment, Al Shaqab’s venue is already open to the public ahead of the start of CHI AL SHAQAB 2019 on March 7, and will remain so until the end of the event on March 9. An exciting indoor and outdoor Entertainment Zone offers an array of fun activities for children to enjoy, including pony rides, magic and circus shows, gaming areas, interactive video and virtual reality games, and F1 and horse simulators.
Other provisions include a food court and coffee corners. A latte art competition will see the winner crowned on March 6 and claim the prize-money of $10,000. The competition has been boosted by the presence of Jibbi Little, a latte art champion from Australia.
VIP and regular tickets for CHI AL SHAQAB 2019 from March 7-9 are available on the Al Shaqab website, www.alshaqab.com.
Al Shaqab – A World Class Facility
Since its establishment in 1992, Al Shaqab’s vision was to build on Qatar’s Arabianhorse heritage and be a leading global center for equine professionals, whileproviding an engaging experience for the community. Global leadership has not onlymeant preserving, improving, and promoting the Arabian horse breed, but alsoencouraging the community in this unique, traditional cultural sport.
Today, Al Shaqab’s impressive facilities, which are distinctivelydesigned in theshape of a horseshoe, cover 980, 000 square meters. With a state-of-the-art MainArena comprising both an indoor and outdoor venue capable of holding over 5000spectators Al Shaqab is part of Qatar’s growing reputation on the world stage thatshowcases its ability to host major international sports event at the highest level.