x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 18 January 2018

Godolphin, Mike De Kock ready to duke it out at UAE 2,000 Guines

The two most successful racing operations in the history of the Dubai World Cup Carnival have eight of the 11 runners in Thursday's colts' Classic at Meydan Racecourse, writes Geoffrey Riddle.

Mike De Kock lines up Jalotta, Journeyman, Wednaan and Full Combat for Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid on Thursday night. Alan Crowhurst / Getty Images
Mike De Kock lines up Jalotta, Journeyman, Wednaan and Full Combat for Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid on Thursday night. Alan Crowhurst / Getty Images

Godolphin and Mike De Kock look set to fight it out for Thursday’s UAE 2,000 Guineas at Meydan Racecourse.

The two most successful racing operations in the history of the Dubai World Cup Carnival are responsible for eight of the 11 runners in tonight’s colts’ Classic.

Charlie Appleby runs exciting Australian import Long John, the Australian Caulfield Guineas winner who will be ridden by Mickael Barzalona, alongside Safety Check, the mount of William Buick.

Saeed Bin Suroor relies on Paximadia, who was also formerly trained by Peter Snowden in Australia and will be ridden by Silvestre De Sousa, and Emirates Flyer, who will be partnered by Kieren Fallon.

Whereas Long John may have the form in the book, in contrast to his compatriot housed in Al Quoz he is not a hard worker in the mornings.

Bin Suroor has spoken in glowing terms about Paximadia for weeks, whereas Appleby is less sure about his charge.

“I am happy with Long John in terms of fitness,” he said. “He doesn’t show a great deal in his work, although I am told he was the same in Australia.

“He should run a huge race based on his form and looks well. It is a bit of a learning curve for us.”

De Koock lines up Jalotta, Journeyman, Wednaan, in addition to Full Combat for Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid.

There are few crumbs to comfort on for Fawzi Nass, Doug Watson and William Haggas, the other trainers with horses in the race as Godolphin and De Kock have won 11 of the past 14 runnings of the 1,600m Group 3 event.