SAUDI Arabia's Latifa Al Shaikh of the Kingdom Stables won the women's race in the Shaikh Nasser bin Hamad Endurance Horseride Championship yesterday at the Bahrain International Endurance Village in Sakhir.
Clocking five hours, 22 minutes and six seconds, Latifa finished ahead of her main opponent Manal Fakhrawi (5:22:52) of Bahrain Royal Endurance Team.
Sherine Fayez (5:27:38), also of the Royal Endurance Team, finished third.
Top riders from Bahrain, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, and Oman took part in this race which was the first women's event of the season.
Nine horses were disqualified - six in the first stage, two in the third and one in the fourth.
The race comprised of five stages, the first two stages of 30 kms each, 25 kms in the third, 20 kms in for fourth and 15 kms for the fifth and final stage.
The event, sponsored by Maalem, also featured a 160 kms senior race besides an additional 100 kms race.
The 100 kms race, which was open to men and women of various age-groups, consisted of four stages in total, including 30 kms each for the first and second, 25 kms for the third and 15 kms for the fourth and final stage.
Around 40 riders, representing 15 stables, were in the fray. Raed Mahmood of Al Murghairat Stable won this race in four hours, 29 minutes and 27 seconds.
Behind him was Shaikh Mohammed bin Khalid Al Khalifa (4:43:13) of Ahmed Al Fateh Stable in second while Al Asayel Stable rider Khalifa Saad (5:04:34) was third.
Fourth place was taken by Nooruddin Qadoori of the Royal Endurance Team, followed by Yousif Isa of Al Asayel Stable in fifth, Ibrahim Busheit of Alio Ghuloom and Hussain Al Mulla of Abdulaziz Al Rumaihi Srables in sixth and seventh positions respectively.
Twenty one horses were unable to compete the 100 kms race as seven horses were disqualified at each of the three stages.
The championship was held under the patronage of Bahrain Royal Equestrian and Endurance Federation president Shaikh Nasser bin Hamad Al Khalifa who honoured the winners of each race in presence of first vice-president Shaikh Khalid bin Hamad Al Khalifa.
Shaikh Nasser and Shaikh Khalid congratulated the top riders and wished others success in future races. The Breef chief praised the standard of competition and thanked the entrants from Bahrain and other GCC countries for taking part in the event.
Also attending the event was actress Tuba Buyukustun of Turkey. She was the chief guest of the event and awarded trophies and other prizes.