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HH Sheikha Fatima bint Mansour
Endurance ride for ladies on Jan 23

HE Sheikha Fatima bint Mansour Al Nahyan Ladies Endurance Challenge, a ride exclusively featuring lady endurance riders from the UAE and outside, will be held for the first time on Friday, January 23, 2009, at the Emirates International Endurance Village, EIEV, Al Wathba, Abu Dhabi.

The CEN 90-km ride is organized by the Organising Committee of the EIEV in co-operation with the UAE Equestrian and Racing Federation.

The ride is not only open to all lady endurance riders having a valid endurance riding license issued by the UAE Equestrian Federation but also for any non-resident foreign riders nominated by their respective National Federations.

This is the first time an endurance ride exclusively featuring lady riders is being held at Al Wathba, thanks to the keen support for such events from His Excellency Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister for Presidential Affairs and Chairman of EIEV. HE Sheikh Mansour, an ardent rider himself, provides substantial boost to equestrianis activities in the country. In fact he was the architect behind a long-distance horse race for persons with special needs which was held at the Emirates International Endurance Village in Al Wathba in February last year, which featured 13 people with special needs. The ride, held for the first time ever in the region, was organised by the Zayed Higher Organisation for Humanitarian Care, Special Needs and Minors' Affairs.

Taleb Dhaher Al Muhairi, Secretary General, UAE Equestrian and Racing Federation, stated: "We expect a very keen competition from the ladies for the championship. Endurance riding is a reflection of our country's deep-rooted history and tradition and love for the horses. If highly successful, this will be an annual event henceforth. We like to thank HE Sheikh Mansour for supporting this event".

One of the outstanding features of the Emirates International Endurance Village is its uniqueness in terms of architecture and the facilities. Endurance riders from different parts of the globe stand amazed at the marvel of this Village which is a unique blend of new and the old. The Village is built in such a way that it reflects a healthy harmony between heritage and modern age. The superb design of the Village reflects a combination of Islamic and Arabic architecture. The Village has to its credit the most advanced equipment, highly trained staff at the veterinary section and computerised time-keeping and latest and modern state-of-the-art equipment to monitor welfare of the horses.

The Endurance Village currently has 90 stables and 50 points to check the horses inside the vet gates which makes the veterinary procedure easier and faster. As is well known, the most important consideration in endurance is the welfare of the horse. Over the last few years the veterinary bodies to maintain the welfare of the horses have introduced closer scrutiny and stringent penalties.

Also keeping in mind the safety precautions, a mobile health centre unit is very active in the village in order to handle any eventualities. The mobile centre can move from one place to another at rapid speed and attend to minor or major mishaps, if at all there are any such incidents. The mobile health centre is of utmost importance because of the high standard of stables maintained by the Endurance Village. Since top class horses are competing, it is only but necessary to have such health centres for therapeutic treatment.

Two kinds of stables are found in the Village one for the horses based in the UAE and the other one for horses from outside the Emirates bearing in mind international requirements and quarantine procedures.

The Village has a well-studied design, which keeps in mind factors such as protection to the horses and riders. Enough care is being taken to avoid any possible mishap during the rides involving vehicles, crews or even riders and horses. The pathways have been specifically designed in such a way that the traffic flows out easily in all the sensitive areas and allotted/specified vehicles can move around freely in these areas allowing them clear view of what is happening at the ride venue. The distance between the riders and the vehicles is comfortably far, yet providing a clear view of the riders and the horses.

Other features include electronic pulse monitors, which help in reading the pulse rate of the horses instantaneously. Gigantic television screens are erected at vantage points in the village to get a closer view of the progress on the trail.

All the passages are being designed very carefully to make the movement of the horses easy and safe and away from any remote chances of accidents.

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