Abu Dhabi: Ali Khalfan Al Jahouri, riding nine-year-old gelding EO Jaras, won the prestigious 160-km His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Endurance Cup 160-km ride on Saturday at the Dubai International Endurance City in Seih Assalam.
The Al Wathba Stables' trainer-cum-rider, who finished second in this ride last year, unleashed a terrific pace on the final loop of 19km to win from Dalpat Singh Ganpat Singh and Indian work rider with another Abu Dhabi-based stable - Al Reef.
Al Jahouri, who was fifth going into the final loop, whipped up a 30.87kmph speed on the grey Purebred Arabian gelding, and that effort saw him win the Omega-sponsored event.
"This is the second outing for this horse after he was eliminated despite finishing first in a junior ride. But today he was just classy and I always knew he would run a big race," said Al Jahouri, who holds the world record for a 120-km ride.
"I started well and finished the first 32kms in 5th place but later paced the ride and dropped to 11th and 10th positions in the next two loops of 32kms and 29kms," he said.
"When I went out on the final loop some of the best riders were ahead of me including last year's winner Omair Hussein. I am greatly satisfied with this win," he said.
Al Jahouri completed the 160-km ride in a timing of six hours 39 minutes and 11 seconds at a ride average speed of 24.05 kmph.
Dalpat Singh, who used to be a work rider for trainer S. Padmanabhan in Bangalore before he came over to the UAE, has been a consistent performer with the Al Reef Stables, finished on Elphyn Phoxx in second place and led a 2-3-4 finish for Al Reef Stables.
"This is my best ever finish. Earlier I had finished 6th and that was my best. Today I just felt good on my horse, riding the 11-year-old for the second time and it is a good result," said Dalpat Singh.
Yousuf Ahmad Al Beloushi rode last year's record-breaking winner Charlandre El Sharif to the third place while Omair Hussain Al Beloushi on Silversprings Kabir was fourth.
Omair on Charlandre El Sharif had created a new world record for a 160-km ride with a timing of 6hrs 28 mins 28 secs at the same venue last year.
Earlier in the morning 84 riders got off to a mass start to battle for a slice of the prize money in the season's first 160-km event.
Shaikh Hamdan Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince, on Kumait, and Shaikh Majid Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum on Spendacrest Kamouflage made early exits.