Stylish start to new British racing season as Newbury welcomes long-time supporter Dubai Duty Free

Roger Varian-trained Elmalka bids to lay down a Classic marker for Sheikh Ahmed in Saturday’s Greenham Stakes

By Team KT

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Remarquee Owner Julian Richmond-Watson, accompanied by his wife, receives the trophy for the Dubai Duty Free Stakes from  Colm McLoughlin and  Sinead El Sibai, alongside Dubai Duty Free staff - Supplied photo file
Remarquee Owner Julian Richmond-Watson, accompanied by his wife, receives the trophy for the Dubai Duty Free Stakes from Colm McLoughlin and Sinead El Sibai, alongside Dubai Duty Free staff - Supplied photo file

Published: Wed 17 Apr 2024, 4:00 PM

Last updated: Wed 17 Apr 2024, 7:33 PM

Dubai Duty Free’s 2024 European horseracing sponsorship portfolio gets underway in style this week when Newbury Racecourse, UK hosts the Dubai Duty Free Spring Trials Weekend beginning on Friday, April 19.

A recognised early season target for many of the sport’s leading stables, the two-day fixture features established trials for the 2,000 and 1,000 Guineas in Saturday’s Watership Down Stud Too Darn Hot Greenham Stakes and the Dubai Duty Free Stakes which both share Group 2 status.


The seven furlongs fillies’ trial has attracted 11 entries with among them Elmalka who looks set to make her Turf debut for Newmarket trainer Roger Varian in the colours of Major General Sheikh Ahmed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Chief of Dubai Police and Public Security, who beat off eight rivals to win a seven furlongs fillies’ Novices’ stakes on her sole start on the all-weather at Southwell last November.

The Dubai Duty Free Stakes is one of seven races supported by title sponsor Dubai Duty Free at the fixture which was widely acknowledged as a favourite of the late Queen Elizabath II.


Action from the Jebel Ali Racecourse owned by Sheikh Ahmed. - Khaleej times. file
Action from the Jebel Ali Racecourse owned by Sheikh Ahmed. - Khaleej times. file

Colm McLoughlin, Executive Vice Chairman and CEO of Dubai Duty Duty Free said, “We are very proud of our long association with Newbury Racecourse and with British horseracing which extends back to 1996.

“During that time we have witnessed many changes at Newbury including the construction of the Dubai Duty Free Grandstand, but the quality of the racing has remained a constant.”

Aside from a competitive programme of races, racegoers will be able to enjoy a host of activities including the opportunity to sample Arabian hospitality in the Dubai Duty Free Marquee where there will also be the chance to win fabulous prizes including free entry into Dubai Duty Free’s Finest Surprise and Millenium Millionaire prize draws each day.

The fixture gets underway with the Dubai Duty Free Golf World Cup EBF Maiden Stakes which is scheduled to be run at 13.42 (BST) on Friday, April 19.

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