Our trip to Kuwait Camel Racing Club was a delightful and refreshing experience.Kuwait has a rich history of camel racing. People from all genres of Kuwaiti society participate in the camel racing events. Although the camel racing has been marred in the past with ‘child jockeys issue’, this system has been abolished and now they use robotic jockeys during the event.
In olden days, Arabs famously used to refer to the camel as 'the ship of the desert.' Camels remain very popular in the Arab world generally and in Kuwait and the GCC countries in particular, with numerous camel-oriented activities and competitions, such as camel racing and camel beauty contests among others.
Weekly camel races currently take place at the Kuwait Camel Racing Club in Kabd. The racing season runs between mid-October and mid-April, with the weather thereafter being too hot for the animals to run. At present, however, there are weekly races every Saturday at the club.
The high point for the region's camel-racing fraternity is the annual International Camel Race which is held every year in a different GCC country. This year's event took place in Kuwait a couple days ago.The owners of the winning camels are presented with valuable prizes, with 65 new vehicles being won this year, apart from cash prize, and as well as golden swords and daggers.
There are currently more than 1000 camels registered with the Club, with registration being a prerequisite for entry into any race or other event.These camel members are then classified by the Club according to their age," explained the club's manager. "The camels usually start racing at one year old. Then there are different categories for the different ages. There are also different varieties of camel; Sudanese camels, for instance, are in a separate racing category. These camels are faster and fitter, so any race with other camels wouldn't be equal. The best camels are from the UAE, especially those of Sheikh Mohammed Rashid Al-Maktoum(PM and Vice-President of UAE).He is the one whose camels win most of the races. He takes very good care of his camels," he added. The camels need special training and exercise.
There are no camels staying at the Club; their herders bring them for the racing only and then take them back home. The racing camels are breed at stables or farms, and they have special trainers to keep them in shape," the club manager concluded.
When are CAMEL RACES held in the club?
The races are held every Saturday at 2:30pm
Entrance Fee: Free
Racing season: The racing season runs between October and April
Location: The Kuwait Camel Racing Club is located in Kabd. Take 6th Ring Road towards Jahra. Take the Sulaibiya exit, turn right onto Sulaibiya Road. Continue on this road past the power station and the horse racing track. The entrance to the Camel Racing Club is on your left just a short distance past the radio broadcasting station (on the right). There will be signs and flags. Just follow the road to the track.
Or from 30, take 6th ring to Road 604. If you hit the 7th/6th Ring Interchange, you have gone too far. Take a left to go south on Road 604. You will drive approximately 11 miles. You will pass the power plant on your right. At the second circle that you encounter, take a left. You will see a mosque. Drive until the road ends and take a right. The club will be at the end of this road on your left.
As you drive, you will notice lot of flags of different countries and sign boards. Also, you will find large car carriers full with grass. Also you will see lot of camels (with or without) owners grazing about on the both side of the road, which is a desert( you will feel like stopping the car to take photos). We were filled with excitement that our destination was nearby.
You can get a flavor of Bedouin life in Kuwait during your visit. There are usually a couple of camels “dressed up” in colorful saddles and head trappings.
Can check my other post
for more information on the road that leads to Kuwait Camel Racing Club