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Volume 10 No. 22


Qatar's "money-no-object drive to establish themselves as a global sporting super power" even extends to spending £500,000 ($774,000) decorating a hospitality box at England's Royal Ascot racecourse, according to Charles Sale of the London DAILY MAIL. Qatar Racing Ltd., headed by Sheik Fahad Al Thani, has "become one of the biggest investors in British racing over the last two years." The Qataris demonstrated their "enormous wealth by lavishly fitting out their facility on the fifth floor of the Ascot grandstand, where they could celebrate winning the Windsor Castle Stakes on Tuesday." An Ascot spokesperson said that owners of the big corporate boxes, who include John Magnier’s Coolmore and Sheik Mohammed’s Godolphin, "are allowed to make their areas as bespoke as they want." However, the Qataris have taken renovations, including shipping in paintings and furniture, "to a whole new level, indicating that cost is practically irrelevant in building the country’s sporting status" (DAILY MAIL, 6/19).