Liwa Oasis: Af Alajaj is the highpoint of Tadhg O'Shea’s bonanza afternoon


Liwa Oasis: Af Alajaj is the highpoint of Tadhg O'Shea’s bonanza afternoon

Abu Dhabi (AE), March 2nd, 2023

Gr2 PA - 5-year-olds & up - 1,400m (7f) - Dirt - AED 300,000

This Thursday card at Abu Dhabi staged a total of six races, five of which were restricted to PA thoroughbreds, and Tadhg O'Shea cleaned up in all of them! However, his triumph in Liwa Oasis (Gr2 PA) was the icing on the cake of his five-timer.

The winner of the Mazrat Al Ruwayah (Gr2 PA) over a mile in February, Af Alajaj (Af Albahar) had made a winning return on November 11th when taking the Bani Yas (Gr2 PA)... and this after a 230 day absence. The Khalid Khalifa Al Nabooda homebred and representative was subsequently unsighted in the Al Maktoum Challenge Round 1 (Gr1 PA), when he could manage only 15th on the Meydan dirt. Reverting to turf at Abu Dhabi turf on this Thursday card, he showed yet again that he had the required courage when it came to scoring a third win at PA Group level. And this despite giving 1.5 kg (3lb) all round to his rivals. After a three wide trip, he found himself in second approaching the home straight. In the ensuing struggle, he managed to reel-in the Omani raider Bahar Muscat (Af Albahar), before turning back the thrust of ex-French Bel'Izam (Nizam). A head divided the pair at the line. Bahar Muscat was three-quarters of a length further away in third.

Next stop: the Kahayla Classic

Ernst Oertel, the winning trainer, said: "Tadhg O'Shea is a real class act! Af Alajaj is a very talented horse who is being primed for the Dubai Kahayla Classic (Gr1 PA). He was 11th in this coveted prize last year." Tadhg O'Shea added: "He’s one of my favourite PA horses in the yard. He’s tough and has a turn of foot. After coming under pressure, he found another gear. He's a class act…"

The brother of Jamaayil

Af Alajaj is a son of Af Albahar (Amer), a stallion based at the Haras de Thouars, and one much talked about in the Gulf region this winter. The dam Hathrah (Makzan) was unraced. She has produced Jamaayil (Al Jakbar), the French Arabian Breeders Sprint (Gr2 PA) winner, and Awzaan (Al Saoudi). The latter annexed The Royal Cavalry of Oman Clarendon Stakes (Gr3 PA), in addition to boasting a third in the H.H. Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Cup (Gr1 PA) at Sandown. The grandam, Ester du Paon (Chéri Bibi), won on the British circuit. She is responsible for producing the Dubai Stakes (Gr1 PA) winning Jiyush (Manganate), and the Sheikh Zayed Sultan Al Nahyan Cup (Gr1 PA) third Awzaan (Al Saoudi). The great grandam is none other than the much heralded Berthe (Irmak).















Af Albahar









Al Hanouf





















Miss Dior








Chéri Bibi



Ester du Paon







Gr2 PA - 5-year-olds and up - 1,400m - AED 300,000

1st        AF ALAJAJ (H6)

(Af Albahar & Hathrah, by Makzan)

Owner & Breeder: K.K. Al Nabooda

Trainer: E. Oertel 

Jockey: T. O’Shea

2nd       BEL’IZAM (H8)

(Nizam & Djesabelle, by Dormane)

Owner: S.H. R. Bin Hamdan Al Maktoum 

Breeder: Haras de Mandore

Trainer: A. Albadwawi 

Jockey: D. O’Neill

Arqana, Saint-Cloud, Purebred Arabian sale 2017, €110,000, Mandore to Mandore International Agency

3rd       BAHAR MUSCAT (H5)

(Af Albahar & Maadi, by Hatteen)

Owner: Muscat Stud For Pure Arabian Horses

Breeder: Muscat Stud

Trainer: I. Al Hadrami 

Jockey: R. Dawson

All ran (4)

(Turf). 1’31"03. Distances: SHEAD - 3/4 - NOSE.