Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Extra race on Shadwell-sponsored card

Thursday’s Nad Al Sheba meeting, kindly sponsored by Shadwell Farm, the American arm of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s breeding empire, is a bumper seven race card featuring a 1400m handicap named after his 2007 Dubai World Cup winner Invasor.

Fernando Jara rode Invasor on that occasion and partners top weight Green Coast who is trained by Champion Trainer Doug Watson.

A Carnival winner last season, he has a touch of class and the trainer expects a bold show: “He seems in good form and this looks a good race to bring him back. He will improve for the run though and has to give weight to his seven rivals.”

At the bottom of the weighs is the unbeaten Knight of Dance, representing the Musabah Al Muhairi/Wayne Smith team who have enjoyed a lot of success in recent times.

Winner of the first Thoroughbred race of last season, the five-year-old was then off the track 53 weeks before winning a handicap over tonight’s trip a month ago.

Smith explained: “He has obviously had a lot of problems but impressed me when winning last time. He should put up a big effort.”

Erwan Charpy’s Skywards and Ali Rashid Al Raihe’s Heart Beat are others to consider.

The concluding 1100m Shadwell Farm Daaher Handicap is also a quality affair with the weights headed by the Adi Selvaratnam-trained Salaam Dubai who has to give weight to 10 rivals.

Third in the Group 1 Dubai Golden Shaheen on Dubai World Cup night in 2007, he was second to subsequent Dubai World Cup runner-up Asiatic Boy last season and a repeat of either effort would see him go close.

Richard Mullen takes the ride and said: “On his best form he would have to go close but he was a bit disappointing last time.”

Watson’s Bounty Quest, Satish Seemar’s Terrific Challenge and Selvaratnam’s other runner, Conroy, all have Group form over course and distance but the trio all have something to prove having suffered problems in recent times.

That leaves Machynleth, another bottom weight ridden by Wayne Smith for Musabah Al Muhairi, as perhaps the main danger.

Watson’s Lord Ego and Clasp, Dhruba Selvaratnam’s Jaasoos and Rod Simpson’s Shahin Shah will all go close in their respective races, while the sole Purebred Arabian race, the 2000m Shadwell Farm Intidab Handicap, is ultra competitive and hard to call.

Thursday’s card is set to begin at 7pm and there are a number of hospitality options available to suit all tastes and budgets in both the Millennium Grandstand and the Maktoum Grandstand.

Entrance to the public area of the racecourse is free of charge and there are also complimentary transfers to and from Nad Al Sheba from Dubai Marina (by Spinneys), Arabian Ranches (Shopping complex), Wafi (in front of Pyramids) and Emirates Towers (Boulevard entrance by Cartier).

Buses will leave at 6.00pm from these locations, and return departures will be at 10pm from the racecourse.

For further information or tickets for any DRC events or hospitality, please visit; or contact the Hospitality Department at Dubai Racing Club on +971 4 327 0077 or .

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