Dubai World Cup 2021: Dates, history and schedule

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Dubai is home to some of the richest events in the world, in terms of both experience and the total purse amount involved. These events such as the Dubai World Cup attract tourists from all over the world flocking to Dubai to witness the grandeur of the festivities and the charm associated with Dubai and the events here. The Dubai World Cup is very significant to Dubai, because of the relevance of horse-racing in Dubai, and the tourism and international attention that it gathers for the city during the time it takes place.


About the Dubai World Cup

Dubai World Cup 2021: Dates, history and schedule

The Dubai World Cup is an international horse racing event and is one of the most prestigious sporting events in the world. It attracts spectators from all over the world who pour their hearts out while the horses pour their sweat out on the tracks, creating a magnificently fiery vibe during the Dubai World Cup.


Dubai World Cup history

The Dubai World Cup night consists of a total of 9 races, which includes 8 thoroughbred races and one Arabian purebred race. However, the term Dubai World Cup specifically refers to the final race of the night, which is a thoroughbred race, and the most awaited of them all.

The Dubai World Cup horse race event was inaugurated in 1996 by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Makhtoum, the ruler of Dubai and Vice President and Prime Minister of Dubai at the time. He is well-known to hold a deep personal interest in the sport of horse racing, and therefore his efforts facilitated the commencement of the event to a great deal. In fact, thoroughbred horses from the Sheikh’s own horse-breeding operations have rightfully bagged the Dubai World Cup title a total of five times, signifying the competitiveness and fervor surrounding the race amongst Dubai locals and international horse-breeders alike.

The Dubai World Cup has always been held on the same track. However, it was originally a different racecourse until its reconstruction and modification transformed it into what is presently known as the exquisite, grand and luxury-rich Meydan Racecourse, including the on-site hotel, food and parking facilities. This transformation also included the track to be built. Following this change of venue in the year 2010, the notability and significance of the Dubai World Cup has continued to be on the rise. The current track is now one of the longest and most well-maintained horse racing tracks in the world.

The Dubai World Cup race has been broadcasted live on American TV ever since the year 2006. and the race stretches over a distance of 2,000 meters or about 10 furlongs.


Dubai World Cup horses

The horses that race on the Dubai World Cup venue are some of the fastest horses in the world, bred and trained in the finest fashions. The race is open to Northern hemisphere-bred horses that are 4 years old or older, and to Southern Hemisphere-bred horses that are 3 years old or older, The last two Dubai World Cup trophies of 2019 and 2018 were won by Thunder Snow, trained by Saeed bin Suroor of UAE.


Dubai World Cup 2021

The Dubai World Cup 2021 is set up as a highly anticipated event with participants from all over the world eager to showcase their talent on such a glorious international stage, and horse-breeding and horse-racing enthusiasts holding their breaths to watch the drama and action unfold right in front of their eyes.


Dubai World Cup 2021 venue

Dubai World Cup 2021: Dates, history and schedule
Meydan Racecouirse, which serves as the Dubai World Cup venue


The Meydan Racecourse, which is a magnificent stadium in Dubai, has serves as the Dubai World Cup venue every year. It is a dirt track, which is not only cheap to maintain but also the popular choice amongst international participants, and is a left-handed track.

The Meydan Racecourse opened on March 27, 2010, when the pre-existing Nad Al Sheba Racecourse on the site was reconstructed to turn it into the grandstand that it currently is. The stadium has a total seating capacity of over 60,000, and a covered parking facility for 8,600 cars. and is usually jam-packed but with maximum comfortability, during the Dubai World Cup.

Besides the actual racecourse which now acts as the Dubai World Cup venue every year, the site also houses a horse racing museum, a gallery, a five-star hotel situated alongside the tracks and a nine-hole golf course. Encompassing all of these, the Meydan Racecourse stretches over a total length of over a mile (1.6 km) and covers an area of 7.5 million metres sq.


Dubai World Cup 2021 dates

The Dubai World Cup is held annually on the last Saturday of March. By this schedule, the Dubai World Cup 2021 is set to take place on the night of March 27, 2021. Three or four days prior to the race day, precursor events to the race start. These events include Post-Position Draw, Breakfast With The Stars and finally the Welcome Reception.


Dubai World Cup 2021 prize money

Dubai World Cup 2021: Dates, history and schedule
The run for the Dubai World Cup winners spot is as prized as the celebrations that follow


The Dubai World Cup 2021 event is scheduled to be one of the most glorious sporting events of all times, and definitely the grandest amongst all previous Dubai World Cups, in lieu of the fact that it will be the 25th anniversary of the Dubai World, as the event was cancelled for the year 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic ongoing at the time.

The total purse amount for the Dubai World Cup 2021 prize money stretching across the 9 races of the Dubai World Cup 2021 is set to be about $30-35 million. Out of all of these, the Dubai World Cup race holds the maximum prize money, estimated to be worth between 12 to 15 million dollars. In fact, the Dubai World Cup is the single richest day of racing of thoroughbred horses in the entire world.


Dubai World Cup 2021 schedule

  1. Racing season: The racing season usually begins a few months prior to the Dubai World Cup dates. It involves weeks of thrill and excitement surrounding the races, as each tries to outrace the other, and competition gets even more intense by the time of the Dubai World Cup. The huge prize money for the Dubai World Cup winner makes for an added edge to the feel surrounding the Dubai World Cup.
  2. Dubai World Cup Carnival: The Dubai World Cup 2021 will have its carnival on eight consecutive Thursdays from January 7 to February 25. A major part of these carnivals takes place during the festive time of Dubai Shopping Festival, so the celebratory and carnival-like feel in Dubai during this time is all the more pronounced. Super Saturday will be on March 6, preceding the final night of the Dubai World Cup 2021 date which is March 27. 
  3. Ending show: Following the final race, there is a concert organized at the Dubai World Cup venue. Over the years, many major pop stars have performed at this grand and extravagant closing ceremony show. Names amongst these include Toni Braxton, Jennifer Loper, Kylie Minogue and Sia.


Dubai World Cup packages for spectators

Several authorized trip agencies make available different Dubai World Cup packages for you to avail. By availing these packages you will be able to book rooms of your choice in the luxurious trackside hotel and avail premium food and drinks while watching the thrill and drama unfold on the race course. You will also be able to take an exclusive behind the scenes tour of the stables at the Meydan Racecourse. These packages also make your trip more convenient by booking your flight tickets to and fro Dubai. Many of these packages are customizable so you can choose as per what exactly fits your needs and preferences.


Places to stay in Dubai for Dubai World Cup 2021

Dubai World Cup 2021: Dates, history and schedule
The majestic and glorious Meydan Hotel is located right at the Dubai World Cup venue


Meydan Hotel: The Meydan Hotel located on the Meydan Racecourse is the perfect location if you are visiting for the Dubai World Cup. It provides the best viewing decks and terraces for watching the race pan out right from the comfort of your hotel, as it is located right on the site of the Dubai World Cup venue. 

Citymax Hotel Bur Dubai: It is a relatively low-budget high-quality hotel in Dubai, located about 10 km from Meydan Racecourse. Overnight stay costs about INR 2,500.

Ramada Downtown Dubai: Located about 5 km from Meydan Racecourse, and costs about INR 7,000-8,000 per night’s stay. It is a very popular choice amongst tourists for its pricing vs facility comparison and proximity to Dubai World Cup venue.

Atlantis, The Palm: It is one of the most sought after luxurious hotels in Dubai. Overnight stay here costs about INR 50,000. The hotel is located about 18 km from Meydan Racecourse, more towards Dubai’s core.


How to reach Dubai

By air; It is the easiest mode to reach Dubai for the Dubai World Cup, as flights operate from all major international airports to Dubai International Airport on a daily basis, which is located at a distance of 18 km from the Dubai World Cup venue, and takes approximately 17 min to reach by road from there, via a taxi or bus that you can readily catch from there. A total of more than 8 flights operate daily from Delhi To Dubai, and the average flight time is 3 hrs 55 min.

By road: It is possible to travel to Dubai by road. However, you cannot legally enter Dubai directly, but through Oman, for which you will need to pay a road surcharge of about 3,000 Omani Rial on your return journey.


The Dubai World Cup is definitely a time of thrill and excitement. People watch the drama unfold in front of themselves during the event as fervently as how participants prepare for and participate in the event. It is one of the major attractions that Dubai has in the form of festivities and celebrations in Dubai that happen to highlight the significance of what Dubai is about, the glorious and majestic sport of horse-racing being a major part of that.

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TrueHAB Admin
Last Updated : Jan 30,2021
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