Sheik Hamdan Al Maktoum, eight-time champion owner in Britain, dies

Sheik Hamdan Al Maktoum, eight-time champion owner in Britain and influential breeder, dies aged 75 after 30 years of success with some of racing’s best known horses

  • Sheik Hamdan Al Maktoum was one of the top owner-breeders of last 30 years
  • It was announced on Wednesday that the Deputy Ruler of Dubai had died at 75
  • Sheik Hamdan had some of Britain’s best known horses in his Shadwell Stud
  • Nashwan and Erhaab were winners of the Derby in 1990 and 1994 respectively
  • He had long associations with Willie Carson, Richard Hills and Paul Hanagan 

Sheik Hamdan Al Maktoum, champion owner in Britain eight times including 2020 and a dual Derby winner, has died at the age of 75.

The older brother of Sheik Mohammed, Sheik Hamdan was the Deputy Ruler of Dubai and one of the most influential owner-breeders in Flat racing over the last 30 years with some of the sport’s best known horses running in the blue and white colours of his Shadwell Stud.

They included Nashwan, the winner of the 2,000 Guineas, Derby, Eclipse Stakes and King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes in 1989, Dayjur, the sizzling sprinter who landed the Nunthorpe Stakes and Prix De L’Abbaye in 1990, and Erhaab the 1994 Derby winner.

Influential owner and breeder, Sheik Hamdan Al Maktoum (pictured in 2015), has died aged 75

Jockey Willie Carson celebrates after winning the Derby in 1990 with Sheik Hamdan’s Nashwan

More recently Sheik Hamdan won last season’s Sussex Stakes with Marcus Tregoning’s Mohaather and the King’s Stand and Nunthorpe Stakes with Charlie Hills-trained Battaash.

Internationally Sheik Hamdan won the Melbourne Cup with At Talaq (1986) and Jeune (1994) and the Breeders’ Cup Classic in the US with Invasor (2006).

He also won the Dubai World Cup, which is run on Saturday, with Almutawakel (1999) and Invasor (2007) among the successes.

Sheik Hamdan holds the Coronation Stakes trophy at Ascot after victory for Ghanaati

Sheik Hamdan bought Shadwell Stud in Norfolk in 1994. He had a long association with some of the sports’ best known trainers including Dick Hern, John Dunlop and Barry Hills and more recently Owen Burrows, William Haggas, Mark Johnston, John Gosden, Sir Michael Stoute, Roger Varian as well as Tregoning and Charlie Hills.

He also had long associations with Willie Carson, Richard Hills and Paul Hanagan as his retained jockey, a position currently held by Jim Crowley.

On Wednesday morning Sheik Mohammed posted on Twitter: ‘We belong to God and to Him we shall return … May God have mercy on you, my brother, my support and my companion.’

Sheik Hamdan celebrates with Ghanaati and jockey Richard Hill after their triumph at Ascot

Sheikh Mohammed’s Godolphin operation was among the first to pay tribute.

A Tweet on the official account read: ‘Everyone at Godolphin is deeply saddened to hear of the death of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid al Maktoum. A great loss to Dubai and our sport. He was one of the greatest owner breeders of modern times. Our deepest condolences to His Family and all @ShadwellStud.’

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