The Meydan meeting draws to a close this weekend with its feature the Dubai World Cup.
The full card is superb with five Group 1s and three Group 2s. I will put together a piece on each race and give a value lucky 15 for those who may want to venture away from home soil and get involved in the carnival atmosphere that Meydan has to offer.
12.15 Godolphin Mile
Muntazah, who finished second in this race last year behind Heavy Metal looks a completely different animal this year. His second run this season was impressive but last time out he broke the track record when absolutely bolting clear up the straight to win ten lengths. Jim Crowley should hopefully scoot off in front and play catch me if you can tactics and I honestly think that if this horse improves again he could win even easier. The nap of the weekend for me.
12.50 Dubai Gold Cup
The French raider here Call The Wind will be hoping to upset the Godolphin applecart and I can see a number of reasons of how this may happen. He had a very nice prep run when finishing second at Chantilly earlier this month. Any horse who wins the Prix Du Cadran needs to be a solid stayer. This horse has stamina in abundance and a turn of foot. Cross Counter lacks a run and Ispolini might just struggle to stay the trip.
1.30 Al Quoz Sprint
Not much to say about this race really. Blue Point has all the form in the book and should win. Lost Treasure for Ballydoyle could run well at a price. He is quirky but can travel well in his races.
2.05 UAE Derby
Ahbath could prove to be value in this race. He is the unknown quantity, and has really come in under the radar with wins at Southwell and Kempton. William Haggas will have him well prepared and it doesn’t look a strong renewa.l Should he win this, he could be one to keep on the right side of for the rest of the season.
2.40 Dubai Golden Shaheen
With the antepost favourite now a non runner this race has really opened up and looks tricky to say the least. X Y Jet has speed to burn and this track could really suit him. He was second in this race last year when collared close home but this time around he should get his own way and set the winning fractions from the front.
3.20 Dubai Turf
This is all about the Japanese super filly Almond Eye. She has won her last six starts, most recently the Japan Cup and looks like a filly who could really take on Enable for her Arc crown later on in the season. All her wins have come in big fields so she is tactically versatile and can be ridden as to how Christophe Lemaire sees fit. Her turn of foot is electric and I can see this being a sparkling performance and one filly we talk about for the rest of the season.
4.00 Dubai Sheema Classic
Magic Wand looks an extremely big price in the context of this race on all known form. She gets a 5lb weight allowance for Old Persian who is favourite for the race and that could prove to be vital. She won the Chesire Oaks and the Ribblesdale very well last season. She progressed all the way through the season. If she has wintered well then first time out this year could be the time to catch her. Team Ballydoyle wont leave a stone unturned for this weekend. She will be ready and raring to go.
4.40 Dubai World Cup
Yoshida is the most interesting horse for me at the prices. He has some very solid form-lines that put him bang in contention for the feature race of the night. He was fourth in a Breeders Cup Classic with Thunder Snow just in front of him yet Thunder Snow is a shorter price this weekend. If we take a look at the Breeders Cup Classic run, the comments state that he was behind and outpaced. For those who remember that race Mendelsshon took a real hold up front and set strong early fractions. Meydan is a track that wont be run as quick so I can see Yoshida being able to travel and stay strongly a lot better this time around.
MEYDAN LUCKY 15
Call The Wind 12.50
Magic Wand 4.00