UAE Polo won the the penalty shootout held this morning at the Dubai Polo & Equestrian Club and qualified for the semifinals of the Julius Bär Gold Cup.
UAE Polo joins Bin Drai, Zedan and Julius Bär Team in the next stage of the Julius Bär Gold Cup that will begin tomorrow.
First semifinal will be held tomorrow from 4.30 pm at the main field of the Dubai Polo & Equestrian Club with Bin Drai Polo facing UAE Polo.
The second semifinal of the Julius Bär Gold Cup will be held next Tuesday between Zedan and Julius Bär Team from 3.30 pm also at field 1 of the Dubai Polo & Equestrian Club.
The Bentley Cup semifinals are also set up and will begin tomorrow with Mahra playing against Desert Palm 2 from 2.30 at the Dubai Polo & Equestrian Club.
The second semifinal of the Bentley Cup will be played on Tuesday at Ghantoot Club from 11 am with local team, Ghantoot facing Abu Dhabi.
Julius Bar Gold Cup
Monday- 4.30 PM (DPEC Field 1)
BIN DRAI VS UAE
Tuesday- 3.30 PM (DPEC Field 1)
ZEDAN VS JULIUS BÄR TEAM
Monday- 2.30 PM (DPEC Field 2)
MAHRA VS DESERT PALM 2
Tuesday- 11 AM (Ghantoot Racing & Polo Club)
GHANTOOT VS ABU DHABI
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Godolphin handler Saeed bin Suroor and stable jockey James Doyle enjoyed a night to remember as they dominated yesterday’s Super Saturday meeting at Meydan.
They combined to land the final three events on the eight-race card, highlighted by African Story’s victory in the Al Maktoum Challenge III, the 2,000m dirt prep race for the $10 million (Dh37.7m) Dubai World Cup in three weeks.
Winner of last year’s World Cup, but on Tapeta not dirt, Doyle’s mount had not appeared to handle the new surface well in the middle leg of the Challenge three weeks earlier.
However, he was able to race prominently on this occasion and wear down long time leader Henry Clay just over 200m from home.
The winner’s stable companion, Prince Bishop, who won this last year on the previous surface, flew home to snatch second under William Buick.
Connections then completed a Group One double with Hunter’s Light proving far too good in the Jebel Hatta, over the same 1,800m turf course and distance as the Dubai Turf in three weeks’ time.
— Neville Hopwood (@nevhopwood) March 7, 2015
Winner of the Challenge on this card two years ago, he was recording a third success at the highest level and made it three wins from three starts at Meydan this year.
Doyle said: “He has thrived this year. Full credit to Saeed and the team who have handled his preparation perfectly.”
Bin Suroor added: “We really wanted to win another Group One with him, so we are delighted with this result.”
Almost as impressive was stable companion Sky Hunter who made a winning UAE debut in the Group 2 Dubai City Of Gold, over 2,400m on turf.
Employing similar tactics to those later used on Hunter’s Light, Doyle kicked his mount clear early and soon had their race won.
— Momo (@SimoHighbury) March 7, 2015
Doyle said: “I won on him at Newbury last year and I think he has improved since then. He did this very well.”
The meeting opened with the Purebred Arabian version of the Al Maktoum Challenge III, like the Thoroughbred equivalent over 2,000m on dirt, and Versac PY, second in the two previous renewals, was able to go one place better. He actually won quite easily in the end, with Paul Hanagan riding for Sheikh Hamdan and trainer Erwan Charpy.
Shaishee was another winner for Sheikh Hamdan in the Group 3 Mahab Al Shimaal on dirt. Ridden by Silvestre De Sousa, he is trained by Musabah Al Muhairi, as is Tamarkuz who won the 1,600m Group 3 Burj Nahaar, also on dirt, under Hanagan who was also completing a double.
The 1,900m Listed Al Bastakiya was won by Mubtaahij, a fifth winner for South African Mike De Kock and ridded by Dane O’Neill.
The turf dash, a 1,000m Group 3 Meydan Sprint, went to Sir Maximilian who led on the line to give UK trainer Ian Williams a first UAE victory.
Qualy league matches at Group A of the Julius Bär Gold Cup 2015 came to an end this afternoon with Bin Drai and Mahra Polo wins against Julius Bär Team and Ghantoot.
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Bin Drai defeated Julius Bär Team by 9 goals to 3 and Mahra beat Ghantoot 10-7.
This two attractive matches ended the qualifying round in Group A with Bin Drai leading the group and Julius Bär in the second place and Mahra in the third place.
Bin Drai: 1-1/ 4-2/ 5-3/ 8-3/ 9-3
Mahra: 2-1/ 4-4/ 6-6/ 8-7/ 10-7
The Julius Bär Gold Cup will continue tomorrow with the last qualifying matches of Group B. At 11 am at Desert Palm Polo Club, Zedan, already in the semifinales, will face Desert Palm 1 and from 4 pm at the Dubai Polo & Equestrian Club, Abu Dhabi will play against Desert Palm 2.