where the horse is always the hero
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Posted 2019-09-25 17:01:45  
Arabian season ends with titles for Sheikh Hamdan, James Owen and Alex Chadwick

The Arabian Racing Organisation’s 2019 racing season ended on Tuesday at Lingfield after 46 races, of which eight were Purebred Arabian Group-race contests.

ARO patron Hamdan Al Maktoum gained his 18th owners' title, with many of those winners trained by James Owen, who secured his third trainers' championship. The ARO jockeys' title was won by Alex Chadwick, a remarkable achievement in his first season riding under ARO rules.

Shadwell Stud director Richard Lancaster, who received the trophy on behalf of his boss Sheikh Hamdan, said: “We are very happy to celebrate another ARO owners' championship title on behalf of HH Sheikh Hamdan.

"His dedication and passion for Arabian racing is second to none and our Arabian racing teams have done a wonderful job again this year. The UK racing season highlight for us was the successful DIAR raceday at Newbury at the end of July."

He continued: "We have been very pleased to see some of our young horses showing a lot of promise, as well as experienced horses performing at the highest level.

"We were also delighted to watch Awzaan win a Group race at Newbury this summer, a first Group winner for his sire Al Saoudi, who stands under the Shadwell Arabians banner in Newmarket.”

Owen scores again:

Awzaan was also a first PA Group winner for Owen, who regained the trainers' title he first won in 2016. Owen also took the leading Arabian racehorse (races won) title with Tijaary, another Al Saoudi-sired performer, who has been the flagbearer for the trainer's racing club, in only its second season.

An integral part of the Owen team has been 24-year-old Chadwick, who joined Owen’s Newmarket-based stable earlier this year. After a brief spell as a conditional jockey in Scotland, he returned to the amateur ranks, initially riding point-to-pointers for Owen before commencing his first season on Arabians.

After receiving his trophy from 16-time ARO champion Simon Walker, he said: “It’s a big achievement. I never thought at the start of the year I would end up as champion jockey. James has been a tremendous help, coaching me, reviewing my races and giving me rides.

"Tijaary would be my highlight, we both lost our maiden tags together, I ride him every day at home and he’s been my favourite throughout the season. The aim over the winter will be to ride in point-to-points and under rules when I can, and hopefully getting more winners.”

From grassroots to top flight:

Genny Haynes, ARO commercial and finance director, said: “We congratulate HH Sheikh Hamdan on another successful season. His continued support of our programme, not only through race sponsorship, but his horses, trainers and stallions, is integral to our success, from grassroots to the highest level.

“We also congratulate James Owen on his third trainers' championship and are delighted for the success of the James Owen Racing Club, which has over 30 members. Syndicates are an excellent way to attract new people to the sport, which is something we would like to encourage in the UK.”

“Thank you also to Rossdales Veterinary Surgeons, who are in their second year of sponsoring with us here at Lingfield, and also kindly presented our champion owner and trainer trophies.”

Looking ahead, Haynes added: “The future will be challenging, but with strong support and encouragement from our sponsors this is nothing that ARO and our participants have not encountered previously.

"The relationship between ARO and the BHA is deepening as we work together on a variety of projects to ensure the sport of Arabian racing is sustainable and integrated into the UK horseracing industry, which has always been our patron HH Sheikh Hamdan’s vision.”

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