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12-y.o. boy from Karaganda wins Kazakhstan horse race tourmanent

Photo courtesy of nurotan.kz Photo courtesy of nurotan.kz

12-year-old Duman Amangeldy from Karaganda has won the national alaman baiga tournament Altyn Tulpar (Gold Horse) that took place in Kabanbay Batyr village not far from Astana on September 14, Tengrinews reports citing Astana TV Channel. He got 10 million tenge (nearly $55 thousand) in prize money.

Alaman baiga is a Kazakh national sport. It is a long distance horse race that evolved from a historic need of nomadic Kazakhs to enhance endurance of both horses and riders to prepare them for long time migrations to new places as well as to select the most enduring and strong horses to improve the breed. Thereafter, Alaman baiga gradually became an integral part of Kazakh major holidays.

The riders of these competitions are usually 8-14-year-old boys. The tournaments usually take place in the steppe abundant with natural obstacles. Alaman baiga largely tests horse's endurance, but a lot of emphasis is also placed on the rider, because excellent knowledge of a hours, its weak and strong sides, and ability to use them wisely is essential for the victory in the races.

Photo courtesy of nurotan.kz.

The national tournament was dedicated to the 15th anniversary of Kazakhstan's ruling party Nur Otan.

The Secretary of Nur Otan party Kumar Aksakalov gave an opening speech at the championship. He said that national sports were of great importance both for the Party and the people of Kazakhstan.  "At all times, national traditions like baiga have been part of the spiritual wealth of our nation, and we should develop them further. Being nomads, our ancestors won their greatest historic victories by riding horses. Their faithful friends, horses, or tulpars, were always with our heroes. As the saying goes 'a horse is like the wings of a warrior',"  Kumar Aksakalov is quoted as saying by nurotan.kz. "This sport raises the national spirit,” he concluded.

Photo courtesy of nurotan.kz.

Representatives of 14 regions of Kazakhstan and the country's largest cities of Astana and Almaty competed in the 43 km race. The first nine to cross the finish line won awards.

Duman Amangeldy was very happy to win the first place in the race. In his past competitions, he along with his horse Baktyra ranked 4th and 5th. The young boy believes that fortune smiled upon him this time. "I started second. The most difficult part was the middle of the race, where there were hills. I was 9 when I started horseriding and taking part in tournaments. This is my greatest achievement. My next goal is to win the President's Cup," the young winner shared his impression of the race.

Photo courtesy of nurotan.kz.

Zhamantos Suleimenkulov from South Kazakhstan oblast and his horse Rabat came second winning a cash prize of 5 million tenge ($27.5 thousand). Yerkebulan Yermaganbetov and his horse Bektory from Karaganda oblast was third winning 2.5 million ($13.7 million). "I made a mistake when I let the horse go too late. She had no time to gather speed and came third. If it was a 50 km race, my tulpar would have come first," Yerkebulan Yermaganbetov said.

Photo courtesy of nurotan.kz.

Performance of Kazakh pop singers, dancers and aytiskers (performers of Kazakh folk songs) as well as an exhibition of handicrafts was held as a part of the event. 

Photo courtesy of nurotan.kz.

Writing by Assel Satubaldina, editing by Tatyana Kuzmina


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