Saturday, March 26, 2011


J J The Jet Plane Wins Second Al Quoz Sprint


For the second time in three years, J J The Jet Plane has won the US$1 million Al Quoz Sprint, bursting through between horses as the field emerged from the sand to enter the course proper and getting to the wire just a head in front of War Artist.

The South African-bred six year old son of Jet Master won this race in 2009 when it was not part of the Dubai World Cup programme but was instead a US$200,000 race contested on Super Thursday at 1200m.


Trained by Michael “Lucky” Houdalakis and ridden by Bernard Fayd'Herbe, J J The Jet Plane ran the 1000m in 59.14 but perhaps the best sight was his Zimbabwean groom Everisto Nyambo's euphoric reaction to the victory in the parade ring, not unlike that of Carl O'Callaghan's Irish jig one year ago after Kinsale King's victory in the Dubai Golden Shaheen.

“We didn't come here initially to win this race, we wanted the Group One 1200m (Dubai Golden Shaheen) but a few things went horribly wrong,” Houdalakis said. “We got him back on track in his last start and although 1000m is short of his best, he has brilliant natural pace and it was going to take something really very good to get away from him.”

J J The Jet Plane adds to his legacy as he is already a six-time Group One winner and a three-time South African champion. In addition, he is the second highest rated turf sprinter in the world.

Arriving in Dubai in mid-December following his victory in the Group One Hong Kong International Sprint, the South African gelding had just two runs during the Dubai International Racing Carnival - an unplaced start over 1200m on the All-Weather on February 17 before a dominant win back on the turf in the USD$175,000 Dubai Duty Free Finest Surprise on March 10.

Inxile led through much of the race with Mr Gruff from the far outside in hot pursuit early after breaking slowly on with Picadilly Filly tracking from third.

As the field made their way down the long straight, War Artist had the lead inside the final 100m but J J The Jet Plane was not to be denied, overtaking that rival in the shadow of the finish.

It was just another head back to third-place finisher Better Be The One and a further short head to fourth-place runner Invincible Ash.


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