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Dubai World Cup preview

Now it's time for the headline act - the Dubai World Cup. Once again, expert analysis from international form guru David Haddrell, @davidhaddrell, who appears courtesy of "the gentleman's bookmaker" StarSports.

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Dubai World Cup

This is a weak renewal of the world’s richest race and it scarcely resembles a Group One. Either way, there are some decent American runners along with the usual local Godolphin mass entries, and it’s an interesting race nonetheless.

1. Treasure Beach – Irish Derby winner two years ago but has struggled to land a blow in most races since that Summer. Finished sixth in the trial for this race behind Hunter’s Light and ran a big race in the Sheema Classic last year. I can’t see him winning this but I think he’ll come on for his prep and if he runs to his best, he won’t be far away.

2. Red Cadeaux – Globetrotting star who’s been beaten a short-head in a Melbourne Cup and won a Hong Kong Vase. Had a good record on synthetics in the UK and has the class to win this but the step back in trip is a worry but I still think 25/1 underestimates his chances in a weak renewal.

3. Dullahan – If Dullahan was coming here off the plane, I’d think he would be close to favourite given his sensational record on synthetics in the US. However, he ran over a mile here on Super Saturday and got stuffed and showed absolutely nothing. Very hard to recommend him after that despite his record on other synthetic surfaces.

4. Hunter’s Light – Improving Godolphin colt who’s won his two starts in Meydan after a blossoming Autumn European campaign. Impossible to find fault with him having won both races in Dubai impressively and he’s well drawn and more than a worthy favourite in my opinion. Will be tough to beat.

5. Capponi – Not ran since coming second in this race last year and has a phenomenal record on Tapeta. If he runs a race like he did twelve months ago, he’ll be very hard to beat but has to be a concern that he’s coming into this without a run and always the danger with ones from these connections that he’s been ruined.

6. Side Glance – Encountering Tapeta and 1m2f for the first time but can’t blame connections for having a go at this race. However, despite having strong European form, it’s a big ask to be thrown in here with two brand new variables for him and I couldn’t recommend him from a betting angle.

7. Planteur – 3rd in the race last year and then came second to Golden Lilac and wasn’t disgraced in the Prince of Wales. Granted he’s not the horse he was when sent off a fancied runner for the Arc but he won’t need to be to win this. The time of his Lingfield prep was fantastic and the rumour was he needed the run and it will have bought him on a lot. This is a weaker race than last year and he’s had a prep this time and 14/1 vastly underestimates his chances in this race. I’ll be amazed if he’s out of the frame.

8. Royal Delta – American mare which smashes fillies only races for fun in the States but came out here last year and was tailed. I see no reasons why that will change this year despite her being a fancied runner and having bits of synthetics form.

9. Meandre – Andre Fabre colt who’s had a career of mixed fortunes having won the GP De Paris in 2011 but hasn’t gone on since then having winning soft Group races in Europe. Got stuffed in his prep on his first run on synthetics last time at Chantilly and has a huge task on his plate here.

10. Monterosso – Last year’s winner but was unfancied and found a lot of improvement out of nowhere and has been stuffed in two runs since. Think he’ll need to get given whatever he had last year to make it back to back wins….

11. African Story – Redirected here from the Godolphin Mile as this is a soft renewal and he loves Tapeta. I can see him having no problems with the 1m2f trip and it’s hard to find many faults with him. The draw and trip are very slight concerns but they are negated by the price IMO.

12. Animal Kingdom – Kentucky Derby winner two years ago and only won a claimer on his return to racing but second in two Grade Ones but they were on turf and weren’t strong races. Encounters Tapeta for the first time and given the poor record that Americans have had on it so far (admittedly a small sample size), it’s hard to recommend him at around 5/1.

13. Kassiano – Proved a revelation in handicaps around this track and stepped up to Group One company last time but put in his place by Hunter’s Light last time. Was a bit unlucky there but hard to see him turning the tables in this race from the outside stall.

Hunter’s Light has a massive chance in this and I really cannot find a fault with him but 4/1 is the right price for him and I can’t back him at the right price. I can’t have the American horses at all at the prices with question marks over them all for different reasons. Kassiano, Treasure Beach and Red Cadeaux all have small EW value at double figures. P

Planteur is one of my strongest antepost bets in a while, he ran a huge race in this last year when Marco Botti hadn’t had him for long without a prep. He’s ran a very strong time in his prep for this and even just a repeat of last year’s run will see him in the frame at the very least. Ryan Moore is onboard, he’s got a good draw, he handles the track and surface and this renewal is weak enough that you don’t need to be an International Group One horse to win it. 14/1 is probably twice the price he should be and it’s an all in bet for me to bring the curtain down on the Dubai carnival.

Advice: Have the absolute lot on Planteur EW at 14/1

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Irish Thoroughbred Marketing Gimcrack Stakes
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