Dubai: Up-and-coming Emirati trainer Ahmed Al Shemaili is all set to move his training base to Dubai and will now operate out of Grandstand Stables in the shadows of the city’s marquee Meydan Racecourse.
Al Shemaili enjoyed a brilliant run and will view the 2021/2022 campaign as his breakthrough season after securing a career-best eight wins, which in turn brought him his best career earnings in a season of Dh1,897,861. The Emirati handler started his career during the 2016/17 season campaign with just five dispatches and has worked his way up the rung slowly but consistently.
He picked up the first success in his sophomore year as a trainer and hasn’t looked back with a further 18 winners, including the eight claimed during the last campaign, a season in which the highlight for him would be Desert Wisdom’s narrow length and a quarter second in the Godolphin Mile behind Japanese-trained Bathrat Leon.
Al Shemaili has saddled 265 runners so far, enjoying 19 career wins, 18 seconds and 15 thirds during his six years as a professional conditioner. He picked up a first career Stakes-level success in the Group 3 Burj Nahaar on Super Saturday, a win that was supplied by his 4-year-old Dubawi-gelding Desert Wisdom, who previously raced in Godolphin’s colours when under the tutelage of its star handler Charlie Appleby.
Al Shemaili assumes his new role as trainer at the Grandstand Stables following the appointment of the seasoned Emirati handler Al Rashid Al Rayhi as an Adviser of the Dubai Racing Club to benefit from the wealth of knowledge and accumulated experience following an illustrious career that saw him clinch the champion trainer’s title more than once and 457 race wins, including a victory on Dubai World Cup night.
Sheikh Rashid Bin Dalmook, Chairman of Dubai Racing Club, stated that naming Al Shemaili as trainer at the Grandstand Stable is part of the ongoing efforts to empower young, hard-working and talented Emiratis in various equine professions and offering them all enablers to improve and excel. Al Shemaili fully deserved the opportunity as he has proved his skills and expeditious efforts over the past years to evolve into a trainer who succeeded in making the most of his runners.
“He had a brilliant season last year with eight winners out of just 79 runners, which is quite a good strike rate and we hope to move to Grandstand Stables will help him professionally as the facilities here are second to none. We wish him the very best going forward and hope he will make the most of the opportunity and privilege he has received,” added Sheikh Rashid.
Confidence and opportunity
Al Shemaili is looking forward to working out of his new base and said he was thrilled to take over at Grandstand Stables. “I would like to thank Dubai Racing Club for giving me the confidence and opportunity to work out of Grandstand Stables and I hope I will be able to meet all expectations and have a career as brilliant as that of its former head trainer Ali Rashid Al Rayhi,” said Al Shemaili.
“Grandstand Stables have a big reputation in UAE racing and I have the responsibility of now maintaining their position as one of the top operations in the country. We have to keep pace with the way racing is growing in the country and the great boom we are experiencing right now. The UAE hosts some of the top races in the world and it annually attracts the best horses, owners and trainers from around the world.”