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Qatar. Home of the Arabian E-mail



In less than a decade the Gulf region has undergone something of a cultural metamorphosis. Interest in the Arabian horse, a centuries old icon of the region around the world, has undergone an astonishing revival. And this has been no more apparent than in Qatar where, in addition to a historical role in the day-to-day lives of its people, as elsewhere in the region, the Arabian has a defined place in the ancient and modern history of the emirate.

When a Qatari cavalry defeated the Turks in what is remembered as the battle of Al Rayyan, the horse was also guaranteed a place in hearts of the Qatari people.

The ruling Al Thani family have, throughout the history of the nation, played a key role in preserving and managing traditional Qatari bloodlines, those descended from Al-Khamsa (the five) – Hamdan, Hamdani, Kuhailan, Saglawi and Ubaiydan. Through the dedication of Qatar’s Rulers, along with others in the Middle East, the horse continued to be part of the cultural tapestry of the region, even during recent decades of rapid economic development.

Qatar Emir H.H. Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani has been a keen rider since an early age. With his profound interest in Arabians, Sheikh Hamad’s Al Shaqab was one of the first modern studs to be established in the Gulf.

Qatar Prime Minister, H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Khalifa Al Thani’s Umm Qarn Farms has developed into one of the world’s foremost Arabian breeding and racing organizations, while Qatar Deputy Ruler H.H. Sheikh  Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Thani has also established himself as one of the world’s leading owners through Al Shahania Farms. Al Shaqab, Umm Qarn and Al Shahania have come to represent all that is good about Qatar, along with other Al Thani farms, such as Abu Fas, Al Nasser and Al Rayyan. But to correctly view the true impact of the Emirate on the Arabian industry one must also look to the remarkable Qatar International Festival of the Arabian Horse and it’s staging of the F.E.I Endurance World Cup, events which have solidified Qatar’s reputation as an industry leader – the home of the Arabian.

Media Prima is the Gulf region’s leading equestrian publisher. Previous titles include The Maktoums: Legends of the Turf, a look at the track record of Dubai’s Ruling family, and Arabian Heritage, focusing on Abu Dhabi’s Al Nahyan family.