10/03/2018, Dubay/ Meydan. NORTH AMERICA COAST-TO-COAST IN SUPER SATURDAY 10th PROCESSION // KOREA, Seoul Owners’ Trophy Sunday: Race-By-Race Preview // Dubai Godolphin results: Hawkbill denies Frontiersman, Thunder Snow runner-up in G1 Al Maktoum Challenge, G1 glory for Blair House, Jungle Cat cruises to Nad Al Sheba Turf Sprint victory
Meydan Racecourse hosts Super Saturday 2018 Race Meeting
The final fixture of the 2018 Dubai World Cup Carnival, Super Saturday lived up to its billing with both Group 1 features producing memorable winning efforts. Introduced in 2003 as a dress rehearsal for the Dubai World Cup card three weeks later, all seven races are mirror images of a race to be contested on that ultra-valuable occasion when $30 million will be distributed in prize money.
Three horses have won the Group 1 US$400,000 Al Maktoum Challenge R3 sponsored by Emirates Airline, over 2000m on dirt before following up in the $10 million Dubai World Cup and North Americawill try and emulate them after a smooth success, making all under Richard Mullen, riding for Ramzan Kadyrov and Satish Seemar.
Drawn six in a field of 12, Mullen’s mount was well away and ridden positively to get to the lead. Two-time Group 1 winner Thunder Snow, last year’s UAE 2000 Guineas (G3) and UAE Derby (G2) winner, was among those tracking him throughout and challenged as the two turned for home, ultimately failing to close in on his rival. In the end, North America was a 5¼ lengths, turning the tables on his aforementioned rival. Multiple G1-winning mare Furia Cruzada finished a game third, 3¾ lengths farther back.
“Last time, when second to Thunder Snow (in Round 2), was probably a career-best and he has built on that again tonight. I just wanted to get him into a rhythm; not necessarily to lead, but we broke so well, I was able to get to the front and he was then always happy. I am just very lucky to be part of a big team with Satish at Zabeel Stables. Everyone works so hard and it is great on occasions like this for everyone. Obviously the Dubai World Cup is going to be a stronger race, but he deserves his chance.”
The main turf race, the 1800m Group 1 $300,000 Jebel Hatta sponsored by Emirates Airline, was a great spectacle with the lead seeming to change hands at least six times in the final 400m. The telling challenge, though, came from Godolphin’s Blair House, who pounced inside the final 150m under James Doyle, riding for Charlie Appleby.
Saeed bin Suroor-trained Benbatl was a close second, with Mike de Kock-conditioned Janoobirepresenting South African a head astern in third. Runner-up on his first two Carnival outings this year, Blair House had landed a handicap over this course and distance three weeks ago. The Group 1 $6 million Dubai Turf is the equivalent race on the big day.
Appleby, who won the 2016 Jebel Hatta with Tryster, said: “We knew this horse arrived here in good form and it looked a wide open race, as it transpired to be. I am sure we will have to come back with him in three weeks in what will be a stronger race but he owes us nothing now.”
Doyle added: “We won a bit too easily last time, so we had to step him up in class as there was no handicap opportunity for him. It has actually worked out very well in the end, because he is a Group 1 winner now!”
Restricted to 3-year-olds and over 1900m on dirt, the middle leg of the UAE Triple Crown, the Listed $250,000 Al Bastakiya sponsored by Emirates.com, was the first race on the card and turned into a procession by Yulong Warrior. Trained by Seemar and drawn the rail, he was soon in front under Mullen with a host of his 12 rivals trying to secure a prominent position behind him. Most of the field were in trouble on the home turn and once Mullen kicked for home, early in the straight, they had the race in safe keeping.
“He is a horse we have always really liked and thought would continue improving as he matures,” Mullen said. “He won his maiden well last time, over 1600m but, obviously, this was a stronger race and he has coped with the increase in both class and distance. He has surprised me just how much he had improved from last time but the nice, low, draw has helped him in both his wins. There should still be more to come from him but the UAE Derby will be a stronger race again. Fingers crossed we can get a nice draw in that as well.”
The Group 3 $200,000 Mahab Al Shimaal sponsored by Emirates Skywards, over the same 1200m dirt course and distance as the Group 1 $2 million Dubai Golden Shaheen, was won in 2016 by Muarrab and 2015 by Reynaldothewizard, who both followed up three weeks later. In 2012, Krypton Factorcompleted the same double for Fawzi Nass, who looks to have serious claims of repeating the trick with Jordan Sport who made an impressive dirt debut under Adrie de Vries.
Like a bullet from the stalls, they were able to get across to the rail, tracked by Yalta, who tried to challenge for the lead at halfway. However, De Vries was just allowing his mount a breather and set sail for home leaving the home turn. They were never going to be caught with Yalta running on gamely to hold on for second. In behind, Krypton Factor was denied third, in the dying strides, by Wild Dude. The winner lowered the track record in the process to 1:10.18.
De Vries said: “Fawzi asked me to work him on the dirt on Monday to see how he handled it and he loved, so it so we came to this race, not the turf option. We had a good draw and he was very quickly out of the gates, so I was able to get across to that rail. Once I gave him a breather on the turn and committed him for home, he put the race to bed in a few strides. Hopefully we can get a good draw on the big night, because it really does help. That was impressive today and we can enjoy this win then worry about the race in three weeks.”
A 1200m turf track record was then established by Godolphin’s Jungle Cat, winning the Nad Al Sheba Turf Sprint sponsored by Arabian Adventures, a conditions event, just as he had done 12 months ago. Confidently ridden by William Buick for Charlie Appleby, the pair cruised into contention at halfway, led 300m out and powered home. It was a second 2018 Meydan victory for the horse from as many starts, having won the 1400m Group 2 Al Fahidi Fort at the beginning of February.
“He has won that really well, but we knew he was in good form,” Buick said. “The form of his Al Fahidi Fort victory over 1400m was advertised by the win over Janoobi and he has loved this fast gallop to aim at this evening. I was soon in a good rhythm and knew he would be staying on strongly. In the end, he has won pretty comfortably. The soft ground did not suit him in the Al Quoz Sprint last year, so hopefully we get quick ground this time, because I think he is better than ever.”
There was a dramatic conclusion to the Group 3 Burj Nahaar sponsored by Emirates Holidays, over 1600m on dirt, with last year’s winner, Heavy Metal, headed close home and being passed late to finish fourth. That appeared most unlikely when, 550m from home, he was sent to the front by Mickael Barzalona, sweeping past Doug Watson-trained Kimbear, who had led from early on under Pat Dobbs. Heavy Metal went a length clear, but Dobbs and sporting the colours of Sheikh Rashid bin Humaid Al Nuaimi, managed to get a last effort from his horse, leading again close home. Secret Ambitionstayed on for second, just in front of Musawaat, who caught the weakening Heavy Metal for third.
“I thought I was in trouble for a moment, but I could see Heavy Metal was getting tired and my fellow has run on gamely,” Dobbs said. “We went very quick early on, so credit to my horse for responding again in the straight when I asked him.”
The nightcap was the Group 2 $250,000 Dubai City Of Gold sponsored by Emirates Skycargo, a prep for the Group 1 $6 million Dubai Sheema Classic over 2410m on turf. The race turned into a battle in the final 300m between stablemates Frontiersman and his well-fancied Group 1-winning stablemate Hawkbill, with the latter lowering the course record to 2:26.85 under William Buick.
“They fought it out well and it was a good race,” Buick said. “I had quite a tough trip and the horse did really well, having to cover a bit of ground. It was a really good performance and he’s an exciting horse, who seems to get better with age.”
Caption: NORTH AMERICA punches Dubai World Cup Ticket with Al mAktoum Challenge R3 Win on Super Saturday 2018 (DRC/AW)
Final Boss produced a late surge in a dramatic finale to January’s Segye Ilbo Cup and the 2017 Korean Derby winner can see off the same rivals once more in Korea’s first Group race of 2018, The Owners’ Association Trophy at Seoul Racecourse on Sunday afternoon (Seoul: 11 races from 10:45 to 18:00 and Busan: 6 races from 12:40 to 17:05).
In total, seven of the thirteen who lined up for the Segye Ilbo Cup on January 28th, take their chances again in the Group 3 Owners’ Cup including the top five place-getters that day and they will be favoured to battle it out for top honours once more. 2017 winner Always Winner, who pulled off a Segye/Owners’ double a year ago, set out in front that day and for a time looked like he was going to repeat his feat of leading gate-to-wire.
That was until a frenetic final furlong which saw City Star, Cheonji Storm and ultimately Final Boss close at speed to sweep past, with Final Boss winning by a neck under Moon Se Young. Final Boss was Champion Juvenile in 2016 but had an up and down three-year-old campaign in which his Derby win was sandwiched between disappointing showings in both the first and final legs of the Triple Crown. His talent was not in doubt, but his maturity was but solid performances in the back-end of last season started to allay those doubts.
If the grown-up Final Boss shows up on Sunday, another big race win – and potentially another big year – awaits.
The Owners’ Association Trophy is race 9 on an 11-race Sunday card at Seoul. Here are full previews of each race (Busan selections follow at the bottom):
Race 1: Class 6 (1000M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million
Exactly half the field are first time starters here but it’s to the ones with at least some experience we turn to find out top picks. With a 2nd and a 3rd from her latest two, (3) CAMP TOUCH will be strongly favoured to score here on what is her fourth career outing. On her way to that 3rd last time on February 10th, she beat three of the others who go here and should take some beating. (7) WAIT AND SEE was 4th in that race, quite a way back but not without promise on what was his debut and he can build on that today. Among the others who have raced before, (12) RAON ZEUS was also a promising 4th in January and is likely to start as second favourite here. Of the first-timers, (5) TWO M OKAY and (9) SURFING POINT looked the best in trials and may be worth a look first-up.
(3) Camp Touch (12) Raon Zeus (7) Wait And See (9) Surfing Point
3, 6, 7, 12
Race 2: Class 5 (1000M) Handicap / KRW 40 Million
A winner on debut in early January, (2) JEJUI BARAM followed up with a slightly disappointing but in no way poor 5th place over the same distance on his first try at this level two weeks ago. He was on pace that day and will likely be again and this time shouldn’t get caught. Despite still being a maiden, (3) ILGAKSU finds himself up in class following back to back 2nd places both at this distance. He’s a front-runner too and has every chance of being competitive at this level. (7) BOLD NINER hasn’t been too far away in his latest two and could play a role here while (1) RUBY BEOLKIN and (6) CHAPEL ACE are others who should be in at least the placing hunt.
Race 3: Class 6 (1300M) Allowance / KRW 40 Million
We’ve had relatively obvious picks in the first two races, but this looks a little trickier. (1) JUMBO CAPTAIN was a much improved 2nd when tried at this distance for the first time a month ago and can build on that today while (8) ROYAL PRINCE too took the trip well on what was just his second start a day later. Both can build on those performances here. (12) DORAON ACHIM HAE and (7) JUMEOK DOKKI came home in 4th and 5th in a decent contest at the distance on February 10th and they too should be involved today. Jumeok Read more of this post
Hawkbill denies Frontiersman in Dubai City of Gold thriller
Hawkbill, making his seasonal debut, got the better of Frontiersman as the Charlie Appleby-trained five-year-olds fought out a tremendous finish to the G2 Dubai City of Gold Sponsored By Emirates SkyCargo at Meydan, UAE, on Super Saturday, 10 March.
Both horses broke well in the 12-furlong race on turf, with Frontiersman (James Doyle) taking up the running after a furlong as Hawkbill (William Buick) disputed fifth towards the outside of the 13-strong field.
Hawkbill started to take closer order around runners on the final turn and cruised up to take a narrow advantage as they straightened up.
But Frontiersman rallied strongly and pressed his stable companion all the way to the line, with Hawkbill prevailing by a head in 2m 26.85s on good turf. Gold Star (Saeed bin Suroor/Jim Crowley) made good late headway to finish third, a further five lengths behind Frontiersman.
Charlie Appleby said: “I was delighted with the performances of both Hawkbill and Frontiersman.
“They were the two class horses coming into the race and we always felt that, if they brought their European form to the table, they would be the two horses to beat.
“Hawkbill has shown his class and we will aim him at the Dubai Sheema Classic (G1, 1m 4f, 31 March) on Dubai World Cup Night.
“I was very pleased with Frontiersman as well. I think that we have something to work with – he put his head down and has run as straight as a gun barrel.
“We are still learning a bit about him and it hopefully won’t be long before we can win a nice race with him.”
William Buick added: “Hawkbill has been a great horse to ride over the years. We knew that he was going to turn up tonight as he had been in good form at home and the team have done a great job with the horse.
“We hoped beforehand that it would be between Hawkbill and Frontiersman, which is how it worked out, and they both showed tenacity and quality.
“I didn’t think that I got a very good run around, so I would hope that Hawkbill’s performance is value for a little bit more.
“It was a nice performance and I think that we can go into the Dubai Sheema Classic quite hopeful.
“Maurizio Pasquale, who rides Hawkbill every day at home, said that he felt that the horse would be 85 per cent tonight and he is never far wrong, so there is plenty left to work on.
“The Dubai Sheema Classic is going to be a much tougher race, so he will need to improve, but Hawkbill is a G1 winner already.”
Saeed bin Suroor commented: “I was pleased with the performance of Gold Star on his first run in a G2 race. We will see how he comes out of today before making any plans.”
Thunder Snow runner-up in G1 Al Maktoum Challenge Round Three
Thunder Snow kept on to finish a clear second behind North America in the G1 Al Maktoum Challenge – Round Three Sponsored By Emirates Airline over 10 furlongs on dirt at Meydan, UAE, on Super Saturday, 10 March.
The four-year-old son of Helmet, who had previously gained a neck verdict over the same horse in the G2 Al Maktoum Challenge Round Two over half a furlong shorter on 8 February, was pushed along leaving the stalls by Oisin Murphy to race in a close fifth of the 12 runners.
Having moved up to fourth with six furlongs to race, the Saeed bin Suroor-trained colt stayed on to take second leaving the back straight.
Thunder Snow tried to challenge but could make no impression from the distance on North America, who made all to score by five and a quarter lengths over the Godolphin runner in a new course record time of 2m 1.71s, with a further three and three quarter lengths back to Furia Cruzada.
G1 glory for Blair House in Jebel Hatta
Blair House showed a sparkling turn of foot to gain his first G1 success on his Pattern race debut in the nine-furlong Jebel Hatta Sponsored By Emirates Airline on turf at Meydan, UAE, on Super Saturday, 10 March,.
The five-year-old, an impressive course and distance handicap winner for Charlie Appleby on 17 February, was soon covered up towards the rear of the 11 runners on the inside rail by James Doyle.
Blair House only had one horse behind him turning for home, but travelled strongly to race behind the leaders entering the final quarter-mile.
After briefly having to wait for a gap, the son of Pivotal darted down the inside between horses to hit the front entering the last furlong and ran on to prevail by three quarters of a length in 1m 47.53s.
Benbatl (Saeed bin Suroor/Oisin Murphy), who raced on the outside of the field throughout after breaking slowly, went from sixth to take up the running briefly over a furlong from home and rallied to regain second by a head Janoobi near the line.
Promising Run (Saeed bin Suroor/Harry Bentley) finished fourth, a length behind Janoobi, with Folkswood (Charlie Appleby/William Buick) fading to sixth after racing prominently.
Charlie Appleby said: “We thought that Blair House would run a big race – he was so well in himself and on a roll so we thought that the race might fall into his hands the way it did.
“I must give full credit to Nick who rides him and the team at home, who have a done a great job freshening the horse up. Nick said Blair House felt great going into the race.
“They have gone nice fractions in front and every horse had their chance.
“I told James to ride Blair House for a bit of luck around the inside and everything worked out great.
“It was a great ride by James and I am delighted for him to get a G1 on the board.
“Blair House has gained so much confidence out here. It’s not the first time we have seen a horse come out here for the handicaps and grow in confidence by enjoying themselves.
“He owes us nothing now and deserves to line up in the Dubai Turf (G1, 9f, 31 March).
James Doyle added: “Blair House got half a split and it almost came too soon for me – he burst to the front really well and then had a look at the cameras late on.
“He seems to enjoy being covered up and being taken back behind horses. The way he won his handicap was the same and he loved me having to keep taking him back.
“Blair House has been thriving at home and all his work has been great.
“He looked a million dollars tonight and Charlie felt that it was worth throwing our hat into the ring. It was a great call by him.
“The Dubai Turf will be a much stronger field, but we will enjoy today and look forward to Dubai World Cup Night.”
Jungle Cat cruises to Nad Al Sheba Turf Sprint victory in record time
Jungle Cat won the Nad Al Sheba Turf Sprint Sponsored By Arabian Adventures for a second straight year with a dominant display in the six-furlong contest on fast turf at Meydan, UAE, on Super Saturday, 10 March.
The Charlie Appleby-trained six-year-old, victorious over seven furlongs on his seasonal return in the G2 Al Fahidi Fort, showed good early speed in the centre of the course before tacking right to chase the leaders of the large stands’ side group after a furlong and a half as the 16-strong field split into two, with six racing on the far side.
Jungle Cat moved up steadily among his group and went second with more than a quarter-mile remaining.
He quickened strongly under William Buick and took up the running from Ertijaal over a furlong from home.
The Iffraaj horse forged clear and was eased near the line to beat Ertijaal by two and a quarter lengths in a new course record time for six furlongs on turf of 1m 8.24s.
Godolphin runners filled out the placings from third to seventh, with Top Score (Saeed bin Suroor/Oisin Murphy) coming home a short-head behind Ertijaal and Baccarat(Charlie Appleby/James Doyle), closing well in fourth after missing the break, with D’Bai fifth, Silver Line sixth and Steady Pace seventh.
Charlie Appleby said: “Jungle Cat is a seasoned campaigner in Dubai and seems to thrive out here. “We were delighted with his seasonal return in the Al Fahidi Fort and he had been showing his well-being at home since then.
“The race worked out well – they have gone a good, hard gallop and the one thing that Jungle Cat was going to do was finish his race strongly.
“William was confident that, once he got upsides Ertijaal, he was always going to win
“We have often thought that seven furlongs was his trip, but he has now broken the six-furlong track record tonight.
“He will head to the Al Quoz Sprint (G1, 6f, March 31) on Dubai World Cup Night along with Blue Point, who was beaten a head by Ertijaal in the G2 Meydan Sprint earlier on in the Carnival.
“Baccarat gave away too much at the start and you can’t give that amount of ground away in these competitive sprints, while D’bai (5th) ran well and this could be his trip in the future.”
fonte : Godolphin
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