Friday, January 13, 2012


Jig fast steps at Jebel Ali


Treble Jig was the very impressive winner of Friday's Jebel Ali Stakes, kindly sponsored by Shadwell, the UK arm of the breeding operation of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the 1950m highlight of Friday's Jebel Ali meeting.

Always in front under champion Jockey Wayne Smith, riding for his main employer trainer Musabah Al Muhairi, Treble Jig was kicked clear about 300m out before recording an easy 10 lengths victory from last year's winner Emmrooz who looked to be travelling ominously well until Smith committed the winner for home leaving any potential challenger struggling.
Smith said: "He won like that at Abu Dhabi on his local debut before a disastrous run at Meydan when he was far too keen over a trip probably too far. I hoped this Jebel Ali surface would suit him and knew, if it did, he would be staying on strongly up the hill. That said, I do not think I expected we might win by that far. Hopefully this opens up plenty of options for him."

On an afternoon of doubles, trainer and jockey completed theirs when Youm Mutamiez won the concluding 1400m handicap to open his UAE account at the third attempt.

Trainer Satish Seemar and jockey Richard Mullen were also in double form with He'sminenotyours landing the 1600m prep race for the Jebel Ali Mile after On War's comfortable victory in the 1950m maiden.

He'sminenotyours had to dig deep to beat Happy Today (representing the Al Muhairi/Smith partnership) to the delight of Mullen who said: "We knew we had a good chance if he stayed the 1600m and he has done that well. After his 1400m win here last time we decided the Jebel Ali Mile would be the target so we will be back in two weeks, hopefully with a live chance."

About On War's much easier victory Mullen said: "All this horse does is stay and he will get further in time. He ran well enough from a bad draw at Abu Dhabi and did it nicely today."

The other pairing in double form were Doug Watson combining with rider Tadhg O'Shea to win the opening 1200m handicap with Kilt Rock who was registering his fourth straight win this season and Fares who scored a narrow victory in the 1600m on his first start since March 2011.

Praising Kilt Rock Watson said: "We thought he would have a good season after spending the summer here to acclimatise but I doubt we expected four wins. He just keeps finding more and seems to be improving with confidence and racing. We will have to see what the handicapper does now but hopefully we can find another race for him here at Jebel Ali as he loves it here."

The eight-year-old Fares had to dig deep to deny a determined challenge from runner-up Crackdown and O'Shea said: "He is a grand older horse who really battled to hold on close home. It has been another good afternoon in what has been a great start to the season. Long may it continue!"


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