Dubai: The flat-racing world was mourning the loss of one of its most influential patrons following the death of Saudi Arabia’s Prince Khalid bin Abdullah on Tuesday, at the age of 83.
His passing was announced by his world renowned Juddmonte Farms operation in a tweet. “It is with great sadness that Juddmonte announces the death of His Highness Prince Khalid bin Abdullah. He died peacefully on Tuesday 12th January 2021,” they tweeted via @JuddmonteFarms. The cause of his death has not yet been made public.
Widely known as ‘The Prince’ in racing circles, Prince Khalid was a racehorse owner and breeder with no equal. He shared his extraordinary passion for horse racing with the likes of His Highness Sheikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and Minister of Finance, and Queen Elizabeth II.
Prince Khalid was best known for owning two of the sport’s greatest horses, Frankel and Enable, who he owned and bred to win two Prixs de l’Arc. Frankel, who was unbeaten in 14 races, is regarded by many as the greatest horse ever to have graced the turf.
Prince Khalid had 118 winners at Group One level.
Douglas Erskine Crum, CEO of Juddmonte Farms, said: “The whole of Juddmonte feels a huge sense of loss. Prince Khalid will always be remembered as a quiet, dignified, benevolent family man, whose horses spoke for him. He leaves a legacy that will stand the test of time. His contribution to the development of the thoroughbred will have long-lasting effects.”
Tributes were pouring on his memory with World Horse Racing tweeting: “Prince Khalid Abdullah. An icon of racing globally, owner of Frankel, Enable and Dancing Brave, has passed away.”
The British Champions Series shared a tribute via Twitter, writing: “Very sad to hear the news that owner-breeder Prince Khalid Abdullah has passed away. A giant figure of British racing, his iconic silks have been carried by some of the most brilliant horses in living memory. May he rest in peace.”
The Jockey Club, the sport’s controlling body in the UK took Twitter to say: “We are saddened by the news that owner-breeder and huge supporter of our sport, Prince Khalid Abdullah has passed away. His horses have graced the best races around the world and he will be sorely missed.”
Champion jumps jockey AP McCoy said: “So sad to hear that Prince Khalid Abdullah has passed away. Owner breeder of so many champions and one of the most iconic sets of colours ever to grace the turf. The sport of horse racing was so lucky to have him RIP.”