Qatar Airways Cargo reports it has seen a surge in demand for its live animal transportation services amidst a run of horse races in the Middle East.
The Amir Sword Festival in Doha took place on February 17-19 and the Saudi Cup in Riyadh took place February 25-26. The Commercial Bank CHI AL SHAQAB presented by Longines in Doha was between February 24-26 and the Longines Global Champions Tour (LGCT) took place in Doha March 3-5.
Qatar Airways Cargo says it carried 190 of the world’s fastest racehorses and finest show jumping and dressage horses on its freighters over the past few weeks.
The prestigious HH The Amir Sword Festival, hailed as the high point in the Qatar equestrian racing calendar, attracts thoroughbreds and pure Arabian horses from all over the world, in competition to win the USD $4.34 million in prize money.
“Every horse transport requires meticulous advance planning and coordination with the customers, the specialised freight forwarders, and the respective airport facilities. We take great pains to ensure that the animals entrusted to our care have as stress-free a journey as possible, naturally in line with all animal transport regulations. Alongside state-of-the-art horse stalls, and seats for the grooms on board our freighters, we also ensure that the distance to the aircraft from the airport animal facility, as well as the waiting times are as short as possible,” Guillaume Halleux, chief officer cargo at Qatar Airways explained.
“Race-horses often have a very high value, and they are shipped three to seven days prior to the event in order to be at peak fitness on the race day. We are well versed in dealing with this precious cargo. Horses meanwhile make up around 35% of all our QR Live animal shipments, and we are one of the main horse transportation carriers in the world.”