By Duane Fonseca It might be one of the most cliched maxims of horse racing, but there is no better way to describe the start Ali Albadwawi made to his career as a full-time trainer than to say the Emirati has hit the ground running. One of 11 Emiratis to be granted a training licence by the Emirates Racing Authority (ERA), Albadwawi made a winning start to his career at Abu Dhabi last Thursday when Taamol, his first and only runner so far, won a 1600m handicap in Shadwell’s colours.
Albadwawi took over from Erwan Charpy at Green Stables after serving as the Frenchman’s assistant for a few years, but having won on his debut he would have more than justified his appointment by the ERA. A diminutive man with a tall ambition, Albadwawi knew only too well of the rollercoaster ride that lay ahead of him when he decided to become a trainer.
“I knew it was never going to be easy; nothing is and if things are easy you wonder if they are really worth chasing,” Albadwawi had told me after returning to the UAE in 2019 following training stints under Michael Halford in Ireland and Richard Mandella in the United States. But having watched Taamol work his way to the front under Pat Cosgrave in the mile event in the UAE capital would have given him the belief needed to dream big.
“I don’t really have a big yard and there’s not too many horses, but I will look to give a good account of myself with the horses I have under my supervision,” Albadwawi told Adiyat Racing Plus. “This is a brilliant opportunity for us Emirati trainers to find our feet in the sport and make a name for ourselves in the world of horseracing and equestrian sport. We are determined to succeed and we are ready to reap the fruits of the patience we’ve shown in the past.”
The 42yo added: “Thank you to His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister Minister of Presidential Affairs, President of the ERA and Dubai Racing Club, Sheikh Rashid bin Dalmouk Al Maktoum, Vice President of the ERA, and Major General Expert Dr. Mohammed Issa Al Adhab, Member of the Board of Directors and General Manager of the Dubai Racing Club, to empower the Emiratis and place confidence and responsibility on our shoulders.”