Outside of the first race handicap on Friday, fields were fairly compact in this week’s lone meeting in the UAE, but it surely did not curtail quality. Russian Rock (pictured below, right) landed his seventh win at Jebel Ali taking the Shadwell Farm Conditions, defeating Sholaan by more than a length under Wayne Smith. “We thought he would need that run to be honest,” jockey Wayne Smith said, in a release from the Emirates Racing Authority. “At halfway I knew I was in with a big chance as Kilt Rock looked in trouble and my fellow took me to the front easily.” By Rock of Gibraltar out of Mala Mala, bred in Ireland by Barronstown Stud and Mrs. T Stack, Russian Rock, trained by Musabah Al Muhairi, is on track for another Jebel Ali Sprint, and possibly some appearances at Meydan, where he was beaten just 3 1/2 lengths by Shea Shea a day after his 2013 Sprint win. As always, all pictures are courtesy UAERacingPictures – please contact them for more details.
Funon (below) franked the form of an Abu Dhabi turf handicap when winning the open-appearing handicap to start the day, getting the first of Al Muhairi’s wins. The son of Cape Cross won for the second consecutive season at Jebel Ali, and was booted home by Dane O’Neill.
Gold Pearl (below) rebounded from a first-up loss two weeks ago to record his third win in four starts at Jebel Ali to take the third race. An American-bred son of Henny Hughes out of the Slew O’Gold mare, Gold Pattern, this was the first of four winners on the day for trainer Satish Seemar. The entire was bred by Copper Cap Farm.
Farrier (below) kept the Seemar bus rolling with a first-up win in the third race. A lightly-race gelding by Tapit out of the Wild Again mare, Wild Vision, bred in America by Winchell Thoroughbreds, Farrier earned his third win in seven starts, defeating Dubai Gold Cup fourth Jutland, who will likely come on well for this run.
A Seemar duo led home the field in the fourth as Moonlight Dash (below) bested Royal Revival. The Darley-bred son of Monsun was getting only his second lifetime win after taking a dull maiden in early 2012. Maqaraat, well-fancied in this camp, ran no better than mid-field.
Calculated (below) was our strong choice in the maiden, eschewing the favoured Bravo Youmzain and Shark In The Sea, and the son of Tiznow did not disappoint, winning easily by six lengths. While the field was surely suspect, the method of performance was far from it – Calculated broke slightly slow, settled just off the pace and progressed with ease en route to the win. A full brother to American champion juvenile filly Folklore, and a half to a pair of dirt sprint winning or graded stakes placed performers, this colt out of the Storm Cat mare, Contrive, was everything we thought he’d be in this field. If held together by the Zabeel Stables team, his future could be bright.
Racing returns to the UAE with a triple-header next week, beginning Thursday at Meydan. We will offer slightly truncated analysis for the meeting.