Qatar’s Manhaf claimed first honours at the 36th annual Al Marmoum Hertige Festival, when winning the opening race at the twelve-day camel racing extravaganza which got off to a thunderous start at the Dubai Camel Racing Club’s headquarters on Wednesday.
Competing in a race for female camels, Manhaf, owned by Faraj Salim Hafeez Al Marie, crossed the finish line first to land a cash prize of Dh100,000.
The inaugural race, which began under bright, sunny skies at 6.30am, was part of the inaugural races of 20 rounds allocated for the tribesmen’s Haqaqa category. A total of 11 races were designated for the Haqaqa Abkar ”She — camel” and nine races for the Haqaqa Jeadan “Male camel”.
The Festival was organised under the patronage of Shaikh Hamdan Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, Chairman of Dubai Executive Council, and the support of Shaikh Ahmad Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, President of the UAE National Olympic Committee, Chairman of the Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Foundation and Chairman of the Dubai Camel Racing Club (DCRC).
Shaikh Hamdan attended the opening days races, which were also attended by several dignitaries from the UAE and Gulf Region, in addition to owners and breeders from the Middle East.
Al Assad (The Lion), owned by Abdullah Salih Al Minhali, gave the UAE it’s first success at the event when winning a race for male camels.
One of the most outstanding winner on the opening day was Jammrah, owned by Abdullah Hamad Mabkhout Al Amri. Jammrah hit the front at the start of the race and easily drew clear of her rivals to win in 5km race in a time of 05:55:07, the best recorded on the day.
The evening session involving 15 races featured races which offered prestigious titles and lucrative prizes of Dh250,000 and a rifle for the winner and Dh200,000 for the second-placed camel.
Rabsha, a female camel owned by Mubarak Mudhafar Al Dhahrie, finished first and Zaaffran, a male camel owned by Mattar Sultan Mattar Bin Markha, was second. Both camels were from the UAE.
The Al Marmoum Heritage Festival is organised in an effort to preserve the UAE and Arab culture and tradition.
Entry is free for the public and racing is held in the morning and afternoon.