Baghdad Race Course
Baghdad, Iraq
The ownership and competitive racing of Arabian purebred horses was traditionally, and continues to be, a valued aspect of cultural life in Baghdad. Respecting and responding to this deep-rooted activity, the design of the Baghdad Race Course, with uniquely sculptured forms, is an architectural splendor which embraced cutting-edge technologies and broke new grounds
The site for the course, near the famous Abu Ghraib prison, was selected by the race course board for its wide, open and accessible spaces.

As part of our research, which included the study of racing facilities adhering to international standards, we visited many race courses. Ascot, in particular, was of excellent and memorable quality and offered the necessary components of a racing facility.

The umbrella forms of the Baghdad Race Course are inspired by its prevailing use by spectators, who, during this particular activity, endure long periods under the hot sun, with high temperatures.  We used light-weight concrete for the umbrella, that extends to a diameter of 24 meters, adopting the lift slab system on round concrete core. All concrete cores were completed and umbrella forms ready to receive concrete with cables attached to top of the core to lift the a umbrellas. We expected it to be the most glamorous and prestigious racing stand. 

Unfortunately political directives and changes stopped the project in late eighties. The cores stand in the skyline over the Abu Ghraib district with the lower, horizontal spectators'  stand. The course operated and races were run with what was completed of the facilities. 

Baghdad, Iraq
Images & Videos
Associated Names
Associated Collections
1978-1983/1398-1403 AH, construction
Building Usages
recreation and sport