Shadwell UAE Season Preview - Week 2

Posted on: 29th Oct 2019

Racing returns to Jebel Ali this week and Shadwell will represented by a dozen runners

Racing returns to the popular Jebel Ali racecourse this week, where Shadwell are once again heavily involved on the seven-race card, with 12 runners.

Four go for the team in the six furlong Al Shafar Investment Handicap, race three, including Alfolk who makes his debut for Doug Watson, having transferred from the stable of Mike De Kock. A Group 3 winner in South Africa, he never really showed his best in four starts at the Carnival but was not disgraced in sixth on his sole try at Jebel Ali in the Listed Jebel Ali Sprint. A repeat of that effort should see him go close here, although he has been overlooked by retained rider Dane O’Neill.

O’Neill rides Taamol, who also brings some smart form, having ended last season with a close fifth behind Rocket Power at Meydan on the turf. A winner first up last season, he is now a pound lower than that success and can make his presence felt here.

Shajjy is a little quirky, but has plenty of ability, as demonstrated by his Jebel Ali Sprint fourth here in February. At his best, he could have a say here, as could Alraased, who travelled like the winner before fading at Meydan last week. A big horse, race fitness and a light weight here add to his chances at a track he likes and he has a good draw in three under stable jockey Fernando Jara.

The feature, race four, is the valuable seven furlong Shadwell Handicap featuring several high-class horses, including last year’s winner High On Life.  Trainer Ali Rashid Al Rayhi will be happy to get the classy Eqtiraan back on track; the gelding having been off since March 2018 when he ran an excellent fifth in the G1 Jebel Hatta at Meydan. Here, he tries dirt for the first time and this could well be a race to bring him on for bigger targets later on. He will be ridden by O’Neill from stall 13.

The same race sees Tadbir make his first start since January for Erwan Charpy. Second twice over course and distance on his last two starts, he is overdue a first win in the Emirates and has a nice light weight, although this is still a tough race for his first start after a break.

Zainhom is also yet to win in the UAE, but has shown plenty of promise, including when fifth in this race last season, off a 13lb higher mark. That, and a light weight of just 53.5kilos, gives him a chance of making the frame in a very competitive race.

The other seven furlong handicap, race five, is headed by Kidd Malibu, who is still searching for another win to add to his local debut success in February 2017. Musabbeh Al Mheiri’s chestnut ran consistently well last season and is now three pounds lower than when a good second to Pinter over six furlongs here in January.

Those to whom Kidd Malibu must concede weight include stablemate Mutawakked, who is now 9lbs lower than when a good third here over course and distance in November. That gives him a real chance of landing a first UAE success. He will be ridden by Szcezpan Mazur from stall seven.

Sheikh Hamdan runs two in the nine furlong dirt handicap, with Mutawajjeh topping the weights on his first start for Erwan Charpy. Previously with Jean-Claude Rouget in France, the four-year-old son of Medaglia D’Oro is bred for the dirt and has been gelded, but is likely to need this first run since May 2018.

Al Rashid Al Rayhi runs Tafaakhor, who won once in nine starts last season on turf at Abu Dhabi. This will be his first start at Jebel Ali where he may find he copes with the surface better than he does the more conventional dirt at Meydan.  

The team are also in action in the concluding nine and a half furlong handicap, where Althaaqib makes his second start for Doug Watson, having previously been in the care of Owen Burrows in the UK. A $1.9million son of War Front, out of the Stakes winner Prize Catch, he should have improved a good deal for the summer in Dubai and is respected here in an open field.

Laura King

Tags: jebelali; sheikhhamdan; uae; lauraking,

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