x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Double delight for Oertel

New trainer's joy, and the jockey Smith rides surprise of the night with Time Out.

Wayne Smith, who won earlier on in the night on Time Out, triumphed in the last race of the card on Marching Time, right, beating Dahteer, ridden by James Doyle, by a half of length at the wire.
Wayne Smith, who won earlier on in the night on Time Out, triumphed in the last race of the card on Marching Time, right, beating Dahteer, ridden by James Doyle, by a half of length at the wire.

ABU DHABI // Ernst Oertel justified his appointment at Al Asayl Stables when he saddled a double at Abu Dhabi Equestrian Club last night.

The South African took charge of the stables of Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed, the President of the UAE, in the summer when he replaced Philippe Barbe to become the yard's third trainer in three years.

His first winner came in the opening race through Shahryar and he completed his double in the National Day Cup Prep race when Time Out, under Wayne Smith, sprang a surprise to get the better of Fryvolous, the multiple Group 1 winner, over the 1,600 metre trip.

Smith also went on to complete a double on the Doug Watson trained Marching Time in the National Day Cup Prep race for the thoroughbreds.

"It was a fantastic night for me and both the winners were really impressive," said Smith, who had to battle it out with James Doyle on Dahteer from the 200m pole all the way to the finishing line to claim his second victory by a head.

Of Time Out, Smith said: "He was lovely and travelled so well for me. It was a matter of getting a split and, when I got it, he really quickened very nicely, and didn't even need a smack. He was impressive."

The eight-year-old finishing second last under Michael Hills in the 14-runner field in the Sheikh Sultan bin Zayed Cup over the course and distance two weeks ago.

"He was a little bit disappointing last time out," Smith said. "I think he is back to his best and his trainer told me he was very confident tonight. Ted [Durcan] came with a run but that wouldn't have made any different because he was always going well."

Oertel had three entries in the race with Time Out and Fryvolous filling the first two places, while Frisk Me Now was more than six lengths away in sixth. All three are set to return for the Group 1 National Day Cup in three weeks .

"Obviously that's the plan but we will see how they have come out of this race," said Oertel.

"Fryvolous was making his first appearance for the season and should get better for his next start. I am pretty pleased with all our runners."

Nieshan, the Dubai Kahayla Classic runner up and the favourite, was beaten by more than four lengths into fifth.

Shahryar, the chestnut son of Scharly won by more than four lengths from Okba, ridden by Carlos Sandval for Mohammed Al Ketbi, the trainer, but the beaten pair avenged that defeat half an hour later when Mudallal Al Reef held off Noor Einy in the Conditions race for horses bred in the UAE.

The Durcan-Oertel partnership had to play second fiddle again in the third race when Jesus Rosales, who rode the third placed horses in the first two races, guided GRP Mudhish to victory for his first winner of the season.

The Argentine drove the seven-year-old grey son of Ezil, a multiple Group 1 winner in the UAE, to victory by half a length from Burkan Al Asayl in the handicap rated 0-70.

Hassan Saleh Al Hammadi celebrated his first winner after receiving his trainer's licence in the summer when Bader, under Royston Ffrench, took the Wathba Stud Farm Cup for the private owners.

apassela@thenational.ae