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Friday, December 16, 2011


Brave finish for Al Muhairi in Jebel Ali feature


Atlantic Brave won the featured 1600m conditions race, kindly sponsored by His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum's Shadwell Farm, at Jebel Ali on Friday afternoon, to open his seasonal account at the third attempt.

Owned and trained by Musabah Al Muhairi and returned to his optimum trip of 1600m, he was forced to fight hard to land the spoils under Wayne Smith who was able to drive him ahead in the final 50m to deny both Yirga and Mureb in a close finish.


Smith said: "We knew the step back up to 1600m would be in his favour and he has really dug deep in the closing stages. He had run well on both his previous starts over 1400m but is better over this trip now. He will be back for the Jebel Ali Mile, in which he was second last year but I would also like to try him over 2000m at Meydan on [the All-Weather]."

Reigning Champion Jockey Smith was to complete a double when winning the concluding 1000m handicap on Kilt Rock for trainer Doug Watson who was himself completing a double in the last two races.

Tadhg O'Shea was in the saddle on the trainer's first winner, Daboos, who was making his local debut a winning one in the second 1400m handicap.

Watson said: "Kilt Rock has been a revelation this year and it is a great effort to win three races on the bounce for any horse. He thrived over the summer and we had hoped he would go well this season. Daboos is a nice new horse who has not had much racing. We hoped he would run well today but perhaps did not expect him to win. He should come on for that and hopefully has more improvement in him."

The previous 1400m handicap was a quality affair and the Satish Seemar-trained He'sminenotyours was very impressive under Richard Mullen.

Mullen said: "I was very hopeful coming into the race as I think this horse has improved a lot from last season. I was always happy in the race and hopefully he has more to offer."

Seemar added: "We will certainly have to think about the Jebel Ali Mile for him."

Trainer Jaci Wickham totally dominated the opening 1400m conditions race, the only race on the card for Purebred Arabians and saddled a memorable 1-2-3.

Royston Ffrench was in the saddle on winner Kareem W'Rsan, who denied Mullen on Ma'Eror W'Rsan with Ted Durcan's mount, A'Nnabak W'Rsan snatching third on the line.

Wickham was obviously delighted and said: "We knew we had three good chances but we could not have expected that. The winner is a nice horse who has had his problems, while the other two are pretty useful. Hopefully they can all win again."

The other race, an 1800m handicap, was won by King Charles, ridden by Ahmad Ajtebi, for Abdulla bin Huzaim.


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