THE WORD OF AFAC:  The support of our sponsors enables our racing calendar to be maintained

30.06.2020

THE WORD OF AFAC: The support of our sponsors enables our racing calendar to be maintained

In a year which is proving anything but ordinary, we would again like to emphasise the exceptional way in which our sponsors have rallied round and shown their loyalty. Despite the exceptional circumstances, and the status quo as regards having to race behind closed doors will remain in place until July 10th, all have agreed to either maintain or adapt their existing sponsorship commitments so as to support our professionals. Thanks to their backing, we can look forward to some great racing during the second-half of the season.

The Dubai International Arabian Races

La Teste-de-Buch racecourse will on Monday, June 29th, host one of the European legs of the DIAR (Dubai International Arabian Races) circuit. Sadly, owing to the Covid-19 crisis, the Italian, Swedish and Dutch ‘legs’ of the series have been cancelled. Meanwhile, Newbury Finals’ Day has been switched to an end of season slot. During the course of the above ‘La Teste’ card, three races (see below) will be sponsored by Shadwell, and two of these carry PA Group status.

  • Shadwell Prix Bengali d’Albret (3-year-olds)
  • Shadwell Criterium des Pouliches (Gr2 PA, 4-year-olds and up, fillies & mares)
  • Shadwell Coupe du Sud-Ouest des Pur-Sang Arabes (Gr3 PA, 4-year-olds and up)

The big PA meeting at Vichy

Vichy racecourse, in partnership with l’ACA (Association Française du Cheval Arabe pur-sang et demi-sang), will showcase the PA horse during the course of a three day meeting which falls in the August 14th -16th period. It should prove to be an unmissable weekend of racing, and one which revolves a common passion: the PA horse. At present, the precise format of the endurance races over the three days has yet to be finalised. On the racing front,

two races, the Prix Magnésie (for 3-year-olds) and the Prix ACA (4-year-olds and up), on the late-afternoon/early evening card at Vichy on August 15th, are expected to be categorised as ‘premium’ races.  All the 'endurance' races will be ‘streamed’ on Arabian Essence TV, whereas the PA flat contests will be screened on Equidia.

The French Arabian Breeders’ Challenges

The French Arabian Breeders’ Challenges invariably make for both unforgettable and prestigious occasions each year as far as the French PA sector is concerned. These events will revolve around three meetings during the course of the current season.

Friday, September 4th at La Teste-de-Buch (entries by July 20th):

  • French Arabian Breeders' Challenge Poulains (Gr2 PA, 3-year-olds, €45,000, 10f)
  • French Arabian Breeders' Challenge Pouliches (Gr2 PA, 3-year-old fillies, €45,000, 10f)

Tuesday, September 22nd t Bordeaux-Le Bouscat (entries by August 24th):

  • French Arabian Breeders' Challenge Sprint (Gr2 PA, 4-y-olds plus, €45,000, 7f)

Saturday, October 24th at Toulouse (entries by August 24th):

  • French Arabian Breeders' Challenge Classic - Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan (Gr1 PA, 4-year-olds and up, €45,000, 10f)

Entry fees don’t apply for those AFAC members which entered their horses as ‘yearlings’ at the very reasonable fee of €200. These entries continue to remain valid throughout, and apply even if there is change of ownership.

Non-AFAC members, and for those horses that weren’t entered at the yearling stage, entries (€800 each) can still be made via France Galop. In the last resort, horses can be supplemented at cost of €3,000 per horse through the latter body.

The French Arabian Breeders’ Challenge meetings are an occasion for AFAC and its members to meet up:

  • our General Assembly at La Teste-de-Buch on Friday, September 4th is timed in such a way that it doesn’t clash with the race meeting taking place there the same day.
  • Furthermore, our traditional and much appreciated stallions’ nominations grand draw for breeders takes place the same day as the final PA Group race of the season, the French Arabian Breeders' Challenge Classic - Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan (Gr1 PA) at Toulouse on October 24th.

The Saint-Cloud sale and the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe weekend

Finally, as is the case each year, the very prestigious Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe weekend card is preceded by the PA sale at Saint-Cloud racecourse on Thursday, October 1st. This sale attracts numerous French and international PA professionals each year. By way of a reminder, entries for the sale catalogue close on Tuesday, June 30th. During the course of the Arc week-end, the PA breed will continue to have its moments in the sun thanks to a series of Qatari-sponsored races: the Qatar Arabian World Cup, the Qatar Arabian Trophy des Juments, the Qatar Arabian Trophy des Poulains and the Qatar Arabian Trophy des Pouliches (Gr1s PA).