Hamdan bin Rashid's Hukum wins prestigious King George V and Queen Elizabeth Stakes

Arc de Triomphe and Breeders' Cup Classic could be next stops for the brilliant King George winner

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Hukum is following in the giant footsteps of his brilliant brother and 2022 Horse of the Year, Baaeed. — AFP
Hukum is following in the giant footsteps of his brilliant brother and 2022 Horse of the Year, Baaeed. — AFP

Leslie Wilson Jr

Published: Tue 1 Aug 2023, 10:10 PM

Last updated: Tue 1 Aug 2023, 10:15 PM

The legacy of one of horse racing’s most influential and respected owners has been brought to life at Ascot racecourse by a horse who was pre-ordained to command authority on the world’s best racecourses at which he would compete.

Given the distinguished name of Hukum (Arabic for rule) by the late Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the former Minister of Finance, the thoroughbred superstar is forging a place among the pantheon of greats following his latest triumph.

Ridden by former British champion jockey Jim Crowley, in the famous blue and white silks of Shadwell, the powerful racing and breeding operation created by Sheikh Hamdan in 1984, Hukum won of the prestigious King George V and Queen Elizabeth Stakes, the second richest race in Britain with prize-money of over £1.2 million.

Greater destiny now beckons the six-year-old son of Sea The Stars, who is following in the giant footsteps of his brilliant brother and 2022 Horse of the Year, Baaeed.

Should Sheikha Hissa bint Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, who currently controls her late father’s racing empire, agree, Hukum is most likely to be seen competing in two of the greatest races in the world – the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe at Paris (Oct 1) and the Breeders’ Cup Classic at Santa Anita Park in America (Nov 4).

Hukum is trained by Owen Burrows who operates a public stable in Lambourne.

Burrows paid tribute to his stable start after the Ascot victory and said: “What can you say about him—he's an absolute star. I can't put into words what it means. I just said to Sheikha Hissa, 'Thank you for giving us another chance.' He could have been whipped off to stud so credit to her for a very sporting decision and giving us that chance.”

Now Burrows will be hoping that Sheikha Hissa will give him another chance and allow Hukum to attempt to become the first Arc winner in Shadwell’s history.

One person who will be having sleepless nights until Sheikha Hissa makes a decision is Jim Crowley, who has ridden Hukum to all his major wins.

"It would have to be the best day," said the former jump jockey of Hukum’s Ascot romp. "I'm lost for words about this horse. He's been a huge part of my career; my first Royal Ascot winner, first group 1 winner.

“We ran him in Dubai after the sad passing of Sheikh Hamdan. He's amazing."

"That's the best race I've ever ridden in—without doubt. How could you say it wasn't?"

Crowley, who was hand-picked by Sheikh Hamdan to wear his colours in 2016, after the departure of Paul Hanagan, has been fortunate to ride some of the best from Shadwell’s glittering stable.

"It was a great horse race and it was very exciting to be part of it, although probably more exciting to watch,” said the jockey who was born in Ascot. "I don't have to worry about that now."

All he’ll have to worry about is what the future holds for Hukum, the commander.


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