Shadwell UAE Season Preview Week 14

Posted on: 22nd Jan 2019

Moqarrar: the Exchange Rate gelding could be destined for big things after winning at Meydan last week

Shadwell enjoyed an exciting night on Saturday at Meydan when the Erwan Charpy-trained Moqarrar  took to the dirt extremely well, beating some seasoned performers in a mile handicap. The five and a half-length win under Dane O’Neill has seen the Exchange Rate gelding given a mark of 95, so he can now target races during the Carnival.

There are two Group 2s on Thursday’s Meydan card, the fourth of the Carnival, including the seven furlong Al Fahidi Fort on turf. Sheikh Hamdan runs 2018 Zabeel Mile winner Janoobi, who was drawn wide when behind the re-opposing Another Batt over course and distance three weeks ago. Second in this race last year, he can give another good showing here, but hasn’t fared much better with the gate, starting from post 10.

The team’s best chance of a winner might well be in the opening five furlong turf handicap, where Faatinah aims to make it two out of two for the Carnival. A two and a half-length winner over Hit The Bid last time, he faces that same rival again, but this time has to give him a kilo and a half. Even so, he could be too good again, under Crowley, who will partner him from stall eight.

De Kock’s Alfolk goes in the same race, his second local start, and should be fitter after finishing ninth, beaten eight lengths, behind Faatinah last time. He is the mount of Dane O’Neill and will break from stall seven, next to Faatinah.

Charpy is hitting form at the right time of the season and has Zamaam in the closing mile and a half turf race on Thursday night at Meydan, the first of three meetings this weekend. A Carnival winner back in 2017, now nine-year-old Zamaam makes his first start of the term and may need this initial outing, with his trainer reporting: “Zamaam doesn’t handle the dirt, at all, so I’ve had to wait until we could gallop him on the turf. He’s going well, but he’ll be fresh.”

Jebel Ali stages its best card of the season on Friday, with the Group 3 Jebel Ali Mile very much looking the highlight.

The opening nine furlong handicap sees Al Rashid Al Rayhi run Mashaheer for a second time at the track. The four-year-old son of Dutch Art ran well in third at Abu Dhabi last time and he looks to have a good chance here, over a shorter distance, from a good draw in four.

The third race is a five furlong Rated Conditions event, which serves as a prep for the Listed Jebel Ali Sprint. Al Rayhi’s Shajjy faces just four rivals, and reverts to dirt after finishing eighth on turf at Meydan on Saturday. Trying this minimum trip for the first time, he will be fitter than many of his rivals and can give a good account.

The seven furlong handicap, race five, has Zainhom returning to Jebel Ali after an eighth-place finish on turf at Meydan last time. Third here over a mile two starts ago, this drop in trip is likely to suit him and he looks the class act in the race. However, he will be ridden by O’Neill as Charpy’s Tadbir is the pick of Crowley. The number one jockey may have been swayed by the four-year-old’s close second over course and distance a month ago, and he too can go well in a strong race.

Musabbeh Al Mheiri runs Mutawakked in the six furlong handicap, which looks wide open.  The Kodiac gelding was only seventh over course and distance last time but was drawn wide that time. Now down to a mark of 68 and breaking from stall seven he can finish in the frame.

Crowley has elected to ride him over Alkhalifa, who has had a six week break since finishing down the field at Al Ain. Having just his fourth local start, this four-year-old should improve with racing and returns to the trip of his maiden victory here.

Laura King

Tags: meydan; shadwell; lauraking; jebelali,

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