Omar Abdul Aziz Al Marzooqi riding Dalida Van De Zuuthoeve

Twenty-year-old Omar may be the baby of the team, but don’t let his age fool you; his accolades are already impressive. In fact, he was the first rider to represent the United Arab Emirates in jumping at the Youth Olympic Games.  At the prestigious Argentine event in 2018, Omar rode a borrowed horse straight into second place and claimed individual silver for the UAE.

Did you know? Omar’s father was also an international showjumper and still trains him when he is at home at Al Bahiya Equestrian Club.

Omar is a member of the Al Shira’aa Grand Prix jumping team and rides Al Shira’aa’s Dalida Van De Zuuthoeve (Thunder V.D Zuuthoeve X Walach Van De Zuuthoeve X Sir Lui). He inherited his ride on this 2009 Belgian mare less than one year ago, and, what a partnership it has been, in less than six-months the pair were part of the team to secure the UAE’s participation in the 2024 Paris Olympics. Since then, they have gone on to take multiple top-ten places in the UAE, Saudi and Europe as they prepare for the Asian Games.

Abdulla Al Marri riding James Oude Heihof

Abdulla and James are another combination from the Al Shira’aa Grand Prix team. Abdulla is one of the UAE’s most successful riders of all time having won over 40 national and international jumping competitions. His highlights include the CSI4* GP in Abu Dhabi in 2019, 2017 Nations Cup in Luxembourg, and last year’s 3* World Cup Two Rounds in Al Ain.

Abdulla is no stranger to the Asian Games having been a competitor in 2014 and part of the UAE team to secure a team third podium place in Doha 2006.

Did you know? Between 2000 and 2017,Abdulla has been presented with the United Arab Emirates Sports Excellence Award three times.

The 14-year-old James Oude Heihof is registered with the Belgian Warmblood Studbook has an impressive jumping record with 15 podium places over the past few years. This partnership were also members of the UAE jumping team who placed second in the Doha Olympic qualifier, securing their place in the Paris Olympic team in 2024.

Salem Ahmed Al Suwaidi riding Diamond Way

Salem is based at Sharjah Equestrian and Racing Club, and has a solid jumping career dating back over a decade in international competition. He’s had six podium places at GP level, and interestingly, 2023 has been one of his strongest years to date, with 16 wins across 76 starts, and we’re only in September!

Did you know? Salem Ahmed Al Suwaidi has a well-known showjumping cousin also called Salim Al Suwaidi, however his middle name is Khamis.

Salem rides the impressive 2012 KWPN stallion Diamond Way. The stallion has had 17 starts this year and won five, with one of their most impressive 2023 wins scooping gold at the CSI4*at Sharjah Equestrian and Racing Club.

Mohammed Al Hajiri riding G’s Fabian

Today Mohammed is based at Sharjah Equestrian and Racing Club, however in the past he’s spent considerable time training in Europe.

Mohammed’s career highlights include; winning the 2017 Longines FEI World Cup in Al Ain, with another horse Pour le Poussage, on which he also took the GP 160cm CSI 3* at the same event.  

In March 2023, Mohammed and G’s Fabian were also part of the team to place second in Doha, securing the UAE’s first ever ticket to the Olympics for showjumping.

Did you know? Mohammed is also a very keen and accomplished falconer.

G’s Fabian is a thirteen year old bay gelding who began his FEI career in 2016 and has gone on to have over 150 starts in national and international competition. Highlights of his career include his CSI4* win in Abu Dhabi’s FEI World Cup in 2022 and scooping first place in the CSI2* in Al Ain in the same year.

Asia Games Team Support and Development

The team has been based in Germany for the summer at a training camp, supported by HH Sheikh Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Ruler of Abu Dhabi, and conducted under the supervision of HH Sheikha Fatima bint Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairwoman of the Fatima bint Mubarak Women’s Sports Academy, Chairwoman of the Fatima bint Hazza Cultural Foundation and Owner and Founder of Al Shira’aa Stables.

Categories: Equestrian, Show jumping

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