An artists impression of Meydan

The Dubai Racing Club is delighted to unveil plans for a phenomenal new iconic horseracing city called Meydan.

The landmark development is the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, and will span 76 million square feet and feature state-of-the-art dirt and turf tracks, while a world-class grandstand will boast a 55,000 to 60,000 capacity and span one kilometre.

It will be a stone's throw from the current Nad Al Sheba racecourse and other features include a world-class hotel, more than 10 restaurants, the relocation of Godolphin Gallery, the home of Dubai Racing Club, a museum, as well as covered car parking for 10,000 and a four-kilometre canal which will run from Dubai Creek to the racecourse.

The grandstand will also serve during the off-season as a major dining, business and conference facility.

A closer look

The target opening date is for the 2010 Dubai World Cup, and to mark its launch, the Dubai Racing Club is excited to announce that prizemoney for the showpiece race will almost double and be worth approximately US$10 million (from US$6 million).

Dubai Racing Club Chairman Mr Saeed Al Tayer said: "We received the green light at the Dubai World Cup meeting last year to develop the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, and we are proud to reveal that to the whole world.

"We wanted to develop a world class facility and I cannot think of any other racecourse in the world that will rival it.

"As we are setting the benchmark in terms of world-class facilities, we want to complement that with increased prize-money of US$10 million, to continue entice the best horses in the world for the opening of Meydan for the 2010 Dubai World Cup.

"It is going to be home to the business community, owners, trainers, riders. You name it - it will encompass everything.

"Meydan is an Arabic word that means where people congregate and race, so it is a combination of definitions, but at the end of the day, it is about where people go and race and achieve results.

"I believe Meydan is not just for Dubai, but it's for the whole world."

The new track and grandstand

Meydan has been designed by the world renowned architects TAK, which over the past 10 years has won several awards and commendations and has pioneered new developments in Malaysia, China, Vietnam, Singapore, Indonesia, Pakistan and Dubai.

Mr Teo A Khing, managing director of TAK, said: "The design as you approach the track is of a falcon, which is a defining symbol of the local heritage, and denotes decisiveness and speed.

"The racing facilities will be outstanding, but it's not just for the season. We want to maximize entertainment all year around. It can stage conferences, concerts, functions, and carry on through the off-season. It will be a tourist attraction as well as a business community."

Dubai Racing Club CEO Frank Gabriel Jr said: "We have taken into account feedback from all aspects of the industry - racegoers, trainers, jockeys, our partners, sponsors, other racecourses - everyone - in making this racecourse the magnificent development it will be.

"The racing season will carry on as normal up to the target date, as the state-of-the-art grandstand can be completed without affecting the action at Nad Al Sheba."

The racetrack surfaces are designed by the Joesph H King company, which has been involved in the design and construction of the dirt tracks and turf courses at most major racing facilities in North America since the 1980s.

Dubai Racing Club Media Release Published 31/03/07