CHANTILLY (FRA), 1st October 2017

Gr. I PA - 4 year olds and over - 2,000m - € 1,000,000

Second in 2015 and fourth in 2016, Gazwan (Amer) finally had his day in the sun when winning the Qatar Arabian World Cup (Gr. I PA) in a thunderous battle. Yazeed (Munjiz) held on to second place in front of the hot favourite, Ebraz (Amer), who did not disappoint and was without a doubt a victim of his draw (the 16) in the starting stalls. Held up for most of the race, Sylvine Al Maury (Munjiz) finished in fourth, whilst Khataab (Amer) came to snatch fifth from Lightning Bolt (Munjiz) in the final strides.

Ba’sil (Amer) quickly took control of the race, and went a few lengths clear of the rest of the field, which was led by Avonmouth (Cambrydge) and Prada T (Djendel). Yazeed and Gazwan sat not too far off the leaders. Ebraz, who came from a wide draw, was forced to travel wide. Sylvine Al Maury sat out the rear. Coming out of the final turn, the leaders weakened while Yazeed came with her run up the rail, followed by Gazwan. Ebraz, who had made up ground coming into the turn, came easily up the centre of the track. A great battle commenced between the three runners, but it was Gazwan who was the strongest at the end.

Qatar rewarded

The first three horses were trained by Qatar based trainers, and belong to two Qatari stables, that of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Khalifa Al Thani and of His Highness Sheikh Abdullah Bin Khalifa Al Thani, who are amongst the most powerful in the country.

Owner and breeder of Gazwan and Ebraz (3rd), Sheikh Mohammed Bin Khalifa Al Thani commented: “This success in the Qatar Arabian World Cup is a fantastic result for Al Shahania and for all Qatar. As the breeder, it is a great joy. I am also very proud of Rajeh who won the Qatar Total Arabian Trophy des Poulains. He was raised in France, a wonderful country for breeding”.

Julian Smart, who trains Gazwan and Ebraz, also said: “I am delighted. The pressure is off. It’s the biggest race in the world, and it’s the first time I have won it with a colt. I have won this race three times, but each time with fillies. So I was a bit worried, as I didn’t have a filly in the race this year! Gazwan is very, very good. He needed the race last time out. He has improved. I put blinkers on him today. Ebraz and Yazeed, who are 4 year olds, are horses for the future. Gazwan will be back here next year! He is a really tough horse, but I try not to run him too frequently. You have to be careful with horses of his quality! Like Ebraz, he goes on any ground. Gazwan could go to the National Day Cup at Doha and Ebraz to the Derby, where he’ll meet Yazeed again. These are two exceptional 4 year olds. Assy [editor's note: one of the best Purebred Arabians that Julian Smart has trained in the colours of Sheikh Mohammed Bin Khalifa Al Than] was very good at this age, but Ebraz is a horse apart”.

Yazeed still a little immature

Alban de Mieulle, the trainer of Yazeed (2nd), commented: “He is horse that I have always liked. We had to stop on him for a while, and this was only his fourth race. He was beaten by a very good horse, who is older than him and was a better horse on the day. From a tactical point of view, his jockey, who is more used to riding thoroughbreds, thought he was riding one!”

The 'unbelievable' finish from Sylvine Al Maury

Élisabeth Bernard, who trains Sylvine Al Maury (4th) explained: “She was the only filly in the race. She came with an incredible run in the final straight, in a really tough field, against colts who had finished in front of her in Deauville. She finished in front of them today. I am delighted. I was a bit disappointed in Deauville, as had there not been so much interference in the race, she could have won. She’s a fantastic filly. It is very hard to keep a horse at this level from 3 to 6 years old. We will see how she is next week. Our current objective is the Jewel Crown, at Abu Dhabi, sponsored by Sheikh Mansoor. It is the richest race in the world for Purebred Arabians in the United Arab Emirates capital”.

The bloodline of Areej, a winner of the World Cup in the same colours

Gazwan is a son of Arc de Ciel (Djendel), Horse of the Year in Qatar in the 2000-2001 season. She won the Emir’s Sword (Gr. I PA), as did Gazwan in 2016. This mare has produced other good horses for Al Shahania, such as Rathowan (Amer), second in The President of the UAE Cup – UK Arabian Derby, the Qatar Arabian World Cup and the Emir’s Sword (Gr. Is PA), as well as Iftekhar Asf (Amer), third in the Hatta International Stakes (Gr. I PA) at Newbury. Gazwan’s second dam, Akie Croix Noire (Tidjani), produced three Group I PA winners, Arc de Ciel, Asraa Min Albarq (Amer), winner of the Dubai International Stakes (Gr. I PA), and Areej (Amer), a mare who won the Qatar Arabian World Cup (Gr. I PA) in 2011, at Longchamp. This maternal line is that of Nevada II (Djanor).

 Arc de Ciel  
  Akie Croix Noire 
   Okie du Cassou


Gr. I PA - 4 year olds and over - 2,000m - € 1,000,000

1st        GAZWAN (58) M6

Amer & Arc de Ciel

Owner & Breeder: H.H. Sheikh M. Bin Khalifa Al Thani

Trainer: J. Smart

Jockey: M. Guyon

2nd       YAZEED (57,5) C4

Munjiz & Al Dahma

Owner & Breeder: H.H. Sheikh A. Bin Khalifa Al Thani

Trainer: A. de Mieulle - Jockey: P.-C. Boudot

3rd       EBRAZ (57,5) C4

Amer & Massamarie

Owner & Breeder: H.H. Sheikh M. Bin Khalifa Al Thani

Trainer: J. Smart

Jockey: C. Demuro

Other runner(s) in finishing order: Sylvine Al Maury, Khataab, Lightning Bolt, Handassa, Al Mouwaffak, Tayf, Motrag, Metrag, Sniper de Monlau, Prada T, Avonmouth, Ba'sil & Kareem Kb.

All ran (16). (Turf) 2'11"87. Distances: ShNEK - ShNEK - 3 1/2.


During the occasion of the 10th edition of the Qatar Arabian World Cup (Gr. I PA), we asked Alban de Mieulle three questions, looking back over recent years.

The French Purebred Arabian. – What changes did the creation of the Qatar Arabian World Cup bring to the Purebred Arabian landscape?

Alban de Mieulle. – Before it’s creation, the seasonal objectives were Newbury during the summer, then Turkey in September. Now, the big events are the race at Goodwood, in August, followed by the Qatar Arabian World Cup. The sponsorship has been a huge factor in the development of Purebred Arabian races, which are now features during the most prestigious race meetings. The quality of the horses hasn’t changed: even before the creation of the Qatar Arabian World Cup, we had top class Purebred Arabians. However the races were far less publicised.

Do you have the impression that they are now more highly regarded?

The wider public have got to know these horses, and their appearance is obviously a big draw for the spectators. The perception of the professionals has also changed. A number of Qatari owners began investing in Purebred Arabians before moving over to Thoroughbreds. The professionals of the industry quickly realised that this clientele should not be neglected!

Has this race also changed the commercial side of Purebred Arabians?

It has changed it in the sense that more and more Qatari owners leave their horses in France to run them in Europe. The problem is that the French race program has not kept up with this change. Previously, horses were sold after winning their maiden at 3 years old. Now, there is a lack of races for older horses. Should handicaps be introduced? That could be a solution. I think that in any case, there are enough Arabian horses in training in France to fill these races. The international program also needs to be revised.