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Al Shaqab

Al Shaqab is Qatar Foundation’s (QF) equestrian center in the Al Shagub district, Qatar. Founded in 1992 by Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, Emir of Qatar, Al Shaqab joined QF in 2004. Al Shaqab is now the region’s leading equine education resource center and features the breeding of Arabian horses.

History of Al Shaqab

For centuries, long before Qatar’s rise as a global economic powerhouse fueled by natural gas and petroleum, the country was renowned for its prized Arabian horses.

The Arabian horse held a vital place in daily life when the ancestors of the Al Thani ruling family migrated from the Arabian Desert three centuries ago to settle in Qatar. These horses played a pivotal role in the country’s foundation.

The name “Al Shaqab” commemorates a significant historical event: the Battle of Al Wajbah, also known as Al Shaqab, which occurred in the town of Al Rayyan in 1893. Led by Sheikh Jassim bin Mohammed Al Thani, Qataris emerged victorious against the Ottomans in this battle, paving the way for Qatar’s independence.

In 1992, Emir Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani established Al Shaqab as a breeding farm, choosing the site of the Al Shaqab battle to honor his ancestor. In 2004, Al Shaqab became a member of Qatar Foundation.

Encompassing approximately 980,000 square meters, the facility boasts stabling for over 400 horses.

The primary goal of the breeding program is to preserve the Arabian breed while producing horses that exhibit beauty, athleticism, and a gentle demeanor. These horses must possess the physical strength required to carry riders.

The breeding program is categorized into three groups: international Arabian horses, encompassing all Arabian bloodlines; straight Egyptian Arabians, as recognized by the Pyramid Society; and traditional Qatari bloodlines from the past.

In 2008, the Al Shaqab team secured the silver medal, finishing second among 24 participating countries in the competition.

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