Godolphin's Thunder Snow ready for Dubai World Cup

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • Mail
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • WhatsApp
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn

Saeed bin Suroor could adopt a similar route to last year with Thunder Snow as he gears up to defend his Dubai World Cup crown at Meydan in March.

The Newmarket handler has earmarked round three of the Al Maktoum Challenge, in which the five-year-old finished second in 12 months ago, as a possible target for the son of Helmet who was last seen when finishing third in the Breeders’ Cup Classic at Churchill Downs.

Bin Suroor said: “We are looking at round three of the Al Maktoum Challenge and then the Dubai World Cup. After the World Cup we will take him back to America again.

“He is doing good, but we are just giving him an easy time. He looks happy but we just want to give him a break between races as he had a few hard runs in America.

“In the Breeders’ Cup Classic they went like a sprint and not a mile-and-a-quarter race and he did well to finish third.”

Stablemate and fellow Group One winner Benbatl will try for back-to-back wins in the Dubai Turf having chased home Australian superstar Winx in the Cox Plate on his final start last year.

Bin Suroor added: “He ran in some hard races in England, Germany and Australia last year. We kept him running all the time and he didn’t have a break really.

“He has had an easy time and we will probably go for the Dubai Turf on World Cup night then keep him for the European season.

“He could go to Super Saturday first, but we will see how is doing.”

Provided by Press Association Sport

Most popular

Related Sections

Godolphin's Royal Marine set to race on dirt for the first time in the UAE

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • Mail
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • WhatsApp
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn

Saeed bin Suroor hopes Royal Marine can prove as effective on a dirt surface by stamping his authority over his rivals in the UAE 2000 Guineas Trial at Meydan on Thursday.

After signing off last season with victory in the Group One Prix Jean-Luc Lagardere at Paris Longchamp in October, the son of Raven’s Pass will face a field of 12 rivals as he bids to give the Newmarket handler his first win in the mile conditions contest since 2016.

Bin Suroor said: “Royal Marine is a very good horse and is doing well. He has enjoyed the climate here and has been working well. He looks healthy.

“It will be interesting to see if he handles the dirt for future races. I expect him to run well on it. If he does, we can look at the UAE 2000 Guineas the UAE Derby.

“The plan was to run him in Dubai to give him a chance to run in these races. If doesn’t handle it, we will keep him in Dubai and ready him for the European season.”

Last season’s UAE 2000 Guineas winner Gold Town, from the yard of Charlie Appleby, will make his first start of the year in Round One of the Group Two Al Maktoum Challenge, in which the Sandeep Jadhav-trained Heavy Metal will bid for back-to-back victories.

The valuable six-furlong handicap sprint sees some well-known names taking part.

David Barron’s Above The Rest is top-weight, with David O’Meara’s Intisaab, the Bin Suroor-trained Major Partnership and Jamie Osborne’s newcomer Dream Today others among the 13 runners.

Bin Suroor also holds strong claims in the Special Olympics Cup through Glassy Waters and Welsh Lord, while Syphax, formerly with Kevin Ryan, is looking to bounce back to his best.

The William Haggas-trained Original Choice is drawn one in the Cepsa Energy Cup, in which Joseph O’Brien runs King’s Field.

Provided by Press Association Sport 

Most popular

Related Sections

Melbourne Cup hero Cross Counter set for Dubai Gold Cup on March 30

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • Mail
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • WhatsApp
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn

Melbourne Cup winner Cross Counter is to be aimed at the Dubai Gold Cup at Meydan on March 30.

Charlie Appleby’s four-year-old was a historic winner of Australia’s greatest race as the first to be trained in the UK.

He came from the rear to defeat Hughie Morrison’s Marmelo, with Charlie Fellowes’ Prince Of Arran completing a one-two-three for the Brits.

“Cross Counter has come back from Melbourne stronger and brighter than ever, and he has put on 25 kilos in body weight. He looks great,” Appleby told www.godolphin.com.

“After discussing his programme with His Highness Sheikh Mohammed, we have pencilled in the Dubai Gold Cup as a starting point for 2019, and we will see where that takes us.

“It will be an opportunity for His Highness to see Cross Counter on the big night, and also for Godolphin fans in Dubai to give the horse the ‘home town’ welcome he deserves.

“A defence of his Melbourne Cup crown is an obvious long-range target, but we know he will be getting a lot more weight this time.”

Appleby also revealed that Old Persian, who beat Cross Counter in the Great Voltigeur, will be aimed at the Sheema Classic; Brundtland could join Cross Counter in the Gold Cup; Loxley is to be aimed at the Dubai Turf, and Blue Point the Al Quoz.

Provided by Press Association Sport 

Most popular

Related Sections