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Showing posts from March, 2016

Dubai Sheema Classic preview

The second biggest race of the night in Dubai, at least pursewise, is the Sheema Classic on the turf. Lining up for another preview is international racing aficionado Davy Lane, @loscharruas.


Dubai Sheema Classic presented by Longines
Group 1, US$6,000,000
Turf, 2410m
2020 local, 1620 GMT, 0320 AEDT

This is a two-horse race. The rest are in town for the place money or for diplomatic reasons.

Postponed was aimed at this race the day after it was clear he could not compete at last’s Arc. Duramente may be the better horse, but one suspects Postponed has been more finely tuned for this race. In every ante post multiple I have placed I have chosen to alternate between the two. It promises to be a duel. I cannot split them, so the reverse forecast is the logical bet advice.

The Race for Third

I am not convinced Highland Reel is fully wound up for this race. The Irish are not afraid to pick up decent place money and move on. It’s hard to bet against Aidan O’Bri…

Dubai Golden Shaheen preview

Next up on Meydan previews is the Golden Shaheen, the G1 sprint for dirt racers. Once again with the preview, it's international racing guru Davy Lane, @loscharruas.


Golden Shaheen
Group 1, US$2,000,000
Dirt, 1200m
1845 local, 1445 GMT, 0145 AEDT

Ten go to post in the Golden Shaheen. XY Jet has been a winning machine at Gulfstream Park. Super Jockey, second in the race last year and ridden by the João “Magic Man” Moreira, returns with a shot. As does, Rich Tapestry, third last year, with the seasoned Gerard Mosse aboard. The Maktoum brothers are each throwing respectable speed into the mix.

The market suggests it is a one horse race. And it promises to be so for at least four or five furlongs. Can anyone catch XY Jet? I 'bet the farm' on the Florida beast a few weeks ago. His latest win over 6.5 furlongs has only cemented my conviction.

XY Jet has been portrayed as an obscure Florida-bred, winning Grade 3 and Conditions races…

Dubai World Cup preview

The blockbuster card at Dubai concludes with the big shebang, the $10m Dubai World Cup. With the return to the dirt surface last year, organisers have got their wish - a star-studded batch of American horses, joined by a bunch of other internationals, few of whom have ever run on the surface.

Taking up the challenge is Calum Law, representing @EIBloodstock.


Dubai World Cup sponsored by Emirates Airline
Group 1, US$10,000,000
Dirt, 2000m
2100 local, 1700 GMT, 0400 AEDT

California Chrome- 2014 KY Derby and Preakness hero who was second behind surprise winner Prince Bishop in this contest last year. He has had a different preparation this time around and has been given time to acclimatise to Dubai, taking in a prep race in the process when giving 7kgs and a beating to a field of local handicappers four weeks ago. That is a big positive for his chances here and he is an obvious chance.

Candy Boy- Sixth placer in the 2014 Breeders Cup Classic before being …

Dubai Gold Cup preview

World Cup Day in Dubai is one of the world's great race meetings. With an obscene amount of money on offer and some of the finest horseflesh, trainers and jockeys in the world present, it's got to be followed.

Previewing the big staying race of the day is regular international racing contributor, Davy Lane, @loscharruas.


Dubai Gold Cup
Group 2, US$1,000,000
Turf, 3200m
1655 local, 1255 GMT, 0055 Sun AEDT

The defection of Sheikhzayedroad in the pursuit of fourth or fifth place prize money in the Sheema Classic means only 11 go to post, four fewer than each of the last two renewals of the race. This is an easier race to find the winner than in years past.

In Sheikhzayedroad’s defence, the Aga Khan’s Vazirabad had been a strong and worthy ante-post favourite and probably one best avoided. The connections of Sheikhzayedroad had not, however, counted on the four year old colt being denied a window seat on the flight from Paris. Vazirabad has b…

Golden Slipper preview

It's Sydney's big race, the hell-for-leather juvenile sprint for a huge amount of money in front of a typically mediocre crowd in the western suburbs...and whaddyaknow, it's raining again!

With the preview, it's Aussie racing expert Mitch Fenton, @weekendkingrace. Read more of his work via his Facebook page.


Longines Golden Slipper
Group 1, 2yo, 1200m
AU$3.5m, Rosehill Gardens
1630 local, 0530 GMT

With rain expected in Sydney all week it’s almost certain to be a rain-affected track on Saturday @ Rosehill Gardens. That always throws a spanner into the works of any race but even more so with two year olds of which most have had no race exposure to anything but a good track.

We’ve done the form for the race based on a Slow (7) / Heavy (8) track. (Note - Soft 5 as at 2pm Friday)


I think the way the race looks there will be a faster than average tempo in the race set up mainly by Extreme Choice who possesses brilliant mid …

Gold Cup preview

The racing highlight (perhaps not the PR one this year thanks to Ms Pendleton) of the final day is always the Gold Cup, this time sponsored by super, big brewery, major international, it's a b2b telco nobody's ever heard of but the owner has a few horses so he's happy to put his name it - Timico. Good luck to them, I hope it's more than just a stop-gap measure while the Authorised Betting Partner saga continues.

Making his second appearance on the blog this week to cover the blue riband classic of the chasing circuit is Paddy Savage, @paddysav.


Timico Gold Cup
Grade 1, £575,000, 3m2f70y, New Course
1530 local, 0230 AEDT

"And this is the race now to the last fence. It's Arkle on the stand side for Ireland and Mill House for England on the far side."

"As they come to the line, she's made it. Dawn Run has won it"

"He's beginning to get up, Desert Orchid is beginning to ge…

Ryanair Chase preview

Festival Thursday - always the day which annoys the traditionalists. Does it dilute the quality of the meeting? You can certainly argue that case with the Gold Cup favourite changing target in favour to this race, not to mention the budget rather than blue-chip nature of this sponsor!

To serve it up to those making the decisions with little regard for the punting public, it's over to regular blog contributor Jon da Silva, @creamontop.


Ryanair Chase
Grade 1, £300,000, almost 2m5f New Course
1450 local

Vautour owner Rich Ricci may be a genius as he just leaves it to Willie and Ruby and lets them set their priorities much as he and Bob Diamond claimed to run a bank - shocked, shocked to hear of wrong doing they were. Whereas say Gigginstown and Wylie and Potts may insist Willie do what they say. The most credible reason for Vautour's switch seems with Wylie insisting Felix Yonger run in the Queen Mother Ruby did not have a ride in this and lo. This s…

Ryanair World Hurdle

The liver might be considerably well lubricated, the head might be thumping and the wallet might be significantly lighter, but we're only halfway through the Cheltenham Festival - it's time to get back on the horse and out there again for Day Three!

Making his blog debut to cover the longest championship event over the minor obstacles, it's Paddy Savage, @PaddySav.


Ryanair World Hurdle
Grade 1, £300k, Three Miles (+/- 10 yds)
1530 local time

Ted Walsh may have been correct that "nobody ever bred a horse to win a World Hurdle" but that detracts little from the glory to be bestowed upon winners of this championship race. Maligned though it may occasionally be, the Day 3 feature has been responsible for many of the great Cheltenham memories in recent times, whether they be the scenes of joy which greeted Warren Greatex's first Cheltenham festival winner last term or the drama which unfolded as Big Buck's denied an inspired ride …

RSA Chase preview

The Festival rolls on and one of the more intriguing contests is the RSA Chase. It only just qualifies for a three-place each-way race, but it's not clear cut at the top and cases can be made for several others. After just missing on the each-way on yesterday's tip, Dave Stephens, @davestevos returns....


RSA Chase
Grade 1, £150k, 3m 1/2f Old Course
1410 local

The feature race on the second day of the Cheltenham Festival is the Champion Chase, but the RSA Chase is another cracking Grade 1 contest and although only eight will go to post it still looks an exceedingly tricky puzzle to solve. No trainer has dominated this race since Paul Nicholls won it for two years in a row back in 2006/7, and last year saw Willie Mullins claim the prize with this season's big Gold Cup hope Don Poli.

Don Poli was the first favourite to oblige since 2008 and there has been a fair few double figure priced winners in that period. Jonjo O'Neill and Gordon Elliott will…

Supreme Novices' Hurdle preview

Await the Roar! Day one of Cheltenham is just hours away and it traditionally opens with the Supreme Novices' Hurdle. It's been a Willie Mullins benefit in recent years, will bookmakers cop another early battering with a superb Irish novice hurdler at the top of the market?

David Stephens returns to the blog with his sharp assessment of the opening race of the Festival, you can follow him on Twitter @DaveStevos


Grade 1, £120,000, 2m 87y, Old Course
1330 local 0030 AEDT

With just a day to go until National Hunt Racing's showpiece meeting gets underway the excitement and anticipation is almost at fever pitch. All the tension and nerves will be released with an almighty roar when the runners in the Supreme Novices' Hurdle come under starter's orders at 1.30 on Tuesday afternoon, and it looks to be an intriguing race. The opener sees the first of a raft of Willie Mullins' hotpots in Min taking his chance, …

Coolmore Classic preview

Sydney gets in on the act of big autumn racing this week as we move closer to the Golden Slipper and The Championships. Making his first appearance on the blog is Sydney racing aficionado, Liam Power, @laz3liam.


Coolmore Classic
G1, AU$600,000, 1500m.
1610 local, 0510 GMT

Group 1 racing returns to Rosehill for the first time since the Golden Rose in September as the Fillies and Mares do battle in the time-honoured Coolmore Classic. With hot weather and windy conditions expected in Western Sydney on Saturday, we are likely to be racing on a Good 3 surface. The rail will be in the True position, meaning horses situated two or three of the fence should be best suited.

Former Winners and SP
2015: Plucky Belle - $16
2014: Steps in Time - $8
2013: Appearance - $11
2012: Ofcourseican - $13
2011: Aloha - $6
2010: Alverta - $17
2009: Typhoon Tracy - $4.75
2008: Eskimo Queen - $21
2007: Tuesday Joy - $7.5
2006: Regal Cheer - $9

By taking a look at winner…