Photograph credit: Dubai Media Office

Sheikh Mohammed On A Spending Spree At The World’s Biggest Thoroughbred Auction

Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed made an appearance at the Keeneland September Yearling Sale and his presence was marked grandly.

Purchases worth Dhs69.4 million

Regarded as the “Superbowl of horse sales,” the Keeneland Yearning Sale is typically attended by royals and millionaires, including Sheikh Mohammed, who marked his presence after a decade and purchased 22 horses for a whopping $18.9 million (Dhs 69.4 million). The second highest buyer was his brother and Deputy Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, who purchased 19 horses for $12.3 million (Dhs 45.1 million), according to Arabian Business.

Busy day at the auction

With a total of 138 horses at the auction, it was a busy day for attendees looking for the best thoroughbreds. Jimmy Bell, President of Darley America; Sheikh Mohammed’s global thoroughbred stallion operation, spoke to Paulick Report about how the Ruler and his staff were “excited” to see this year’s colts and how much they “enjoy the horses.” He said “He’s a very busy man, and everybody – the staff and the farm – are so excited for him to come over here and have the opportunity to go through the farm and see the yearlings. He just enjoys the horses so much and the sales.”

Known for his love for horse racing

Godolphin, one of the biggest horseracing stables in the racing world today, was founded by Sheikh Mohammed in 1992 and he was a passionate horse rider himself. Back in the day, he used to race with his friends on the beaches of Jumeirah and also emerged victorious in international races such as the G3 Molecomb Stakes at Goodwood in 1977. Today, Godolphin is a global racing team and won over 270 races in 14 countries. One of their most prestigious wins came last June, when Godolphin’s horse, Masar won the famed Epsom Derby horse racing championship.

Dubai World Cup cash prize raised

For long, Dubai World Cup maintained the reputation as the “world’s richest race” with prize money worth $10 million (Dhs36.7 million), which was surpassed by the Pegasus World Cup Invitational in Florida last year, offering an astonishing cash prize of $16 million (Dhs58.7 million). However, the Ruler has issued a directive for the cash prize of the race to be raised to $12 million (Dhs 44 million) and the total prize money of all the races to be increased to $35 million (Dhs129 million).