Qatar Airways has announced a partnership with The Curragh, which will stage 18 race days from May to September. Former champion jockey Johnny Murtagh, who rode to success in Doha, Qatar, and is now a leading trainer based at The Curragh, helped to launch the sponsorship announcement with his horse Windsor Beach.
The partnership has been made possible by the generosity of Qatarai businessman Mubarak Al Naemi, owner of Kilfrush Stud in Co Limerick.
The sponsorship includes the Group 2 Qatar Airways Sapphire Stakes on Saturday 15th July and the Qatar Airways Royal Whip Stakes (Group 3) on Sunday 20th August as part of a Qatar-themed race day that will also feature the inaugural running of the Qatar Racing and Equestrian Club Curragh Stakes.
Jonathan Harding, Senior Vice President, Qatar Airways Europe, said: “Qatar Airways is honoured to partner with The Curragh. As such an established and world-renowned horse-racing venue, there is great opportunity to connect the Irish and Qatari communities.
“We are very proud to enter the Irish market and expand our global network of over 150 destinations. We believe the new route will inspire and educate both Irish and Qatari travellers on both destinations.”
Evan Arkwright, Commercial Manager, The Curragh, said: “The Curragh is delighted to have the opportunity to work with one of the world’s leading airlines at a very important time for the racecourse to develop key partnerships with premium global brands.
“I would like to thank Mr Al Naemi for helping to facilitate this initiative, which will further strengthen and enhance the important links we have with the Gulf region.”
Qatar Airways was recently announced official airline partner of the 2017 Dublin Horse Show, further establishing strong relations with the Irish equestrian industry and business networks.