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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 17 December 2018

UAE have high hopes for success at the FEI Nations Cup in Barcelona

A squad of five Emiratis will represent the country in the four-day competition.

Abdullah Al Muhairi on Cha Cha Cha 7. Courtesy of Emirates Equestrian Federation
Abdullah Al Muhairi on Cha Cha Cha 7. Courtesy of Emirates Equestrian Federation

The UAE showjumping team are confident of returning with positive results from their first ever participation at the FEI Nations Cup Final in Barcelona this weekend.

The Team UAE qualified from an entry of 50 countries to earn their spot at the Real Club de Polo de Barcelona as one of the 18 finalists at the event, which runs from Thursday to Saturday.

Representing them are Abdullah Al Muhairi, Ghanem Al Hajri, Abdullah Al Marri, Sheikh Majid bin Abdullah Al Qassimi and Abdullah Al Kumaiti.

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“The team have trained extremely hard in both Germany and Austria in the build-up to this event, and we are optimistic of their performances,” said Omran Al Owais, the team manager.

Sheikh Majid who rides 10-year-old Celtion added: “I am really looking forward to this event.

“All the riders have been working hard throughout the season. It is an honour to be able to represent our country for the first time at such a prestigious event. We hope to do well for the team and our country.”

Al Muhairi will partner 12-year-old mare Cha Cha Cha 7, Al Hajri will be onboard the 14-year-old gelding Pour Le Poussage, Al Kumaiti on Newton Abbot while Al Marri has travelled with both AMS Catch M and Sama Dubai FBH.

Ingmar de Vos, president of the FEI, said he was excited to see the UAE compete for the first time in the final against the world’s best teams.

“The presence of Team UAE at this final highlights the success and growth of equestrian sport in the Gulf,” he added.

“We wish UAE every success over the three days of top jumping action at the Nations Cup Jumping Final.”

The 1992 Olympic venue in Barcelona is staging the final for the fifth successive year. Germany are the reigning champions and are among the favourites to take the title.