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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.

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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’Brien and Ryan Moore, particularly when the two have served one so well in the past, but Highland Reel has just stepped out of the Tipperary winter and could hardly be expected to give two prime time rivals — each coming off serious Group 2 winning preps — a run for their money. This should leave the door open for another to swoop for third place. The likely candidate is Dariyan. Trainer Alain de Royer-Dupré expressed exactly such hope this morning when interviewed by French racing broadcaster, Equidia. A place is the best he could hope for, or words to that effect. Dariyan looked powerful and occasionally looked capable of competing with Postponed in the Dubai City of Gold on March 5th, but was ultimately not as efficient over the ground. That performance was, however, enough to suggest to me he could edge Highland Reel out of the placings.

Last Impact ran a courageous second as a long shot in the Japan Cup with Ryan Moore aboard. He could give the main protagonists something to consider down the homestretch. The Magic Man Moreira is riding and one suspects a third or fourth place finish could be conjured up.

One and Only was the Japanese Derby winner in 2014, but has done nothing significant since.

Gailo Chop could force the pace and attempt to cling on for sixth place — the 81,000 UK Pounds would be gracefully accepted by his syndicate.

Sheikhzayedroad belong in the same place-chasing prize money category.

The Blue Eye does not need the prize money, fresh off his four length win in the Listed Emir’s Trophy in Doha earlier this month. You could do worse than a small stakes each way flutter on this horse at 66/1.

Selections
1 Duramente
2 Postponed
3 Dariyan
4 Last Impact

Duramente 10/3 - Bet365
Dariyan -12/1 William Hill, Ladbrokes, Bet365, Paddy Power

Advice: Reverse Forecast Duramente and Postponed.

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