Shadwell UAE Season Preview Week 13, 2018

Posted on: 24th Jan 2018

Ibn Malik: Listed winner makes his debut at Meydan this week

HH Sheikh Hamdan’s superb start to the Carnival continued last week when Faatinah shouldered top weight to victory in the 1200metre handicap at Meydan. Ridden by Jim Crowley for Australian trainer David Hayes, the dual Group 2 winner was never headed and impressed his jockey, who said: “He has bowled along really well but also had a good look around at the lights which was a new experience for him. It was a very good performance, giving weight away to all the others, and he will improve for it after two months off.”

This week there are four more meetings in the UAE, starting once­­­­­ again at Meydan, where the feature is the Group 2 Cape Verdi Stakes. Shadwell sit that out, but do have eight runners on the remainder of the card.

The 2810metre turf handicap looks competitive and features Zamaam, trained by Erwan Charpy. The eight-year-old was well-held last time out over slightly shortly than this, but thrives the further he goes.

Shadwell have dominated the turf sprints so far this Carnival, and the Hayes-trained Shaf is the latest to go fast and furious on the grass, lining up in the 1000metre handicap. Described as an ‘open class sprinter’ by assistant trainer Ben Hayes, he might nevertheless be hard to beat for Crowley. Maria Ritchie runs two, including Taneen, the choice of Dane O’Neill, who has transferred from the yard of Roger Varian and who is a dual winner over 1200metres. A $350,000 yearling purchase, this is the son of Speightstown’s first run since being gelded and he looks an interesting recruit, with dirt options later down the line. Ritchie also saddles Ibn Malik, who is another making his local debut, having being a Listed winner for Charles Hills. He drops in trip here, having done much of his racing over 1400metres.

Al Rayhi is also represented in this race, sending out Eqtiraan, who shaped well when eighth over 1200metres on his local debut last week. Also a Listed winner, he tackles this minimum trip for the first time.

The non-Carnival race on the card is over 1600metres on dirt and sees Nathr aim to win this race for the second year in a row, having obliged 12 months ago for Doug Watson. On the same mark of 92 this time, he can’t be ruled out. Another frontrunner, Munaaser, also runs here, and is starting to look well-handicapped off a mark of 89.

Khusoosy won a Group 3 two seasons ago and Ali Al Rayhi’s gelding goes in the 2000metre turf handicap, the last on the eight-race card. Out of luck since that Abu Dhabi win, he is now looking attractively weighted off a mark of just 97.

Shadwell Farm sponsors Jebel Ali’s most valuable race on Friday, the Group 3 Jebel Ali Mile. Taamol, who ran so well on his dirt debut in Maktoum Challenge Round I, is the team’s runner in what looks a very strong renewal. He will be ridden by Crowley and may well press forward from stall five.

Earlier on, the 1800metre handicap has a small field, featuring Ijmaaly, who has been dropped three pounds after finishing down the field on turf last week. Fifth on his only Jebel Ali start to date, he is one to consider here.

The 1600metre handicap has a much larger field, and sees Al Barez line up for trainer Ahmad bin Harmash. A winner here on debut, he ran well last time out when fourth over a furlong shorter and a good run can see him finish in the frame, off a career low mark of 73.­­­

Bin Harmash also saddles one in the maiden, when Sboog has his fifth run, but just his second try up the Jebel Ali hill, while the 1000metre Conditions race brings together several very useful sprinters. Nawwaar won here at the end of 2015 and takes a big drop in grade, while Taneen takes him on and looks exciting on his dirt debut. Veteran Mushaakis, who ran very well on the turf at Meydan last Saturday, is also very interesting as a previous course and distance winner. They are joined by the exciting Farook, trained by Charpy, who is unbeaten in the UAE, having landed a 1200metre handicap and then one over this trip. Now rated 90, this looks much tougher but he clearly has plenty of ability and is the pick of Crowley. He again has a good draw, going from two.

Al Ain continues its busy run of fixtures on Saturday and Al Rayhi’s nine-year-old stable stalwart Qannaas takes on 14 others in the 1400metre handicap. Without a win since February 2013, he is nevertheless game and always runs to his best. 

View Thursday's cards here.

By Laura King

Tags: uae; meydan; topracing; lauraking,

Latest News

Latest tweets