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Pressing questions for Saturday

The week in Dubai is busy, and now that the posts are drawn, the analysis is out, and the final preparations are made, let’s have a go with some random thoughts on a variety of items.

  1. All signs point to very fair, even surfaces for all races on Saturday. The rains are gone, seemingly, and it should be a tight Tapeta, a good turf course, and plenty of fun.
  2. Might there really be four repeat winners from 2013? It seems wildly plausible, between Soft Falling Rain, Cavalryman, Shea Shea, and Reynaldothewizard. In fact, this site tipped all four to repeat…hmmmmmm.
  3. Prices that have us intrigued: Horses to consider backing despite not getting a DubaiRaceNight top tip – well over fair odds, in our view: Complicate (14-1), Mars (40-1), Meandre (33-1), Surfer (25-1), Side Glance (33-1).
  4. Lays: Ruler Of The World (9-2), The Fugue (7-2), Ernest Hemingway (13-2), Sterling City (11-4), Rich Tapestry (10-3)
  5. Here are the pressing questions for the meeting…
    1. The three most proficient horses on Tapeta in the Godolphin Mile are Soft Falling Rain, Shuruq, and Variety Club – can anyone even come close to those three in this race?
    2. Who wins the Dubai Gold Cup if Cavalryman does not?
    3. Can Long John buck the trend from the Appleby yard? His runners in the UAE are 6-39 first up and 0-26 in all subsequent starts. Dating back to last year with other runners based at Godolphin’s Marmoom Stables in the Dubai desert, they are now a combined 15-80 first up and 1-64 in all subsequent starts over two seasons here.
    4. Cooptado is a wildcard in the UAE Derby. He should get the distance and has worked on the surface plenty. He’ll stay all day, but will he land a blow to the top ones?
    5. How much of a trip can Jose Lezcano work on Ron The Greek?
    6. How many races will Hong Kong win, and can they do anything on Tapeta? “They” are wildly bullish on their chances, but rarely travel much beyond Singapore or Japan, let alone trying all-weather. They are talking a phenomenal game and we’ll find out soon enough if it’s justified or bluster. Both Akeed Mofeed and Military Attack seem wildly competent, with the latter winning in Singapore away from home.
    7. Can Amber Sky keep going in the Al Quoz?
    8. How quick will the pace be in both the Duty Free and Sheema Classic – on paper, it seems as though both races are likely to have strong frontrunners in Tokei Halo/Anaerobio and Festive Cheer/Twilight Eclipse. Will the closers come running?
    9. How fit are Magician, The Fugue, Dank, Ruler Of The World? These are horses aimed at a long season in Europe…will they be 100% for this race when they need to be?
  6. On Friday, DubaiRaceNight.com will offer its annual Dubai World Cup meeting superlatives. Stay tuned. The preview video for the meet should also be available soon.

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