x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 19 January 2018

Godolphin ready to ride quartet of runners to victory in Dubai

Dubai-based Godolphin expecting big things at Dubai Future Champions Day.

Outstrip and Mickael Barzalona are expected to be part of a successful day for Dubai-based Godolphin on Saturday.
Outstrip and Mickael Barzalona are expected to be part of a successful day for Dubai-based Godolphin on Saturday.

Godolphin lead the way on Dubai Future Champions Day, with four runners at Newmarket on Saturday.

The Group 1 Dewhurst Stakes and the Group 1 Middle Park Stakes take centre stage on the seven-race card, aimed primarily at juvenile runners.

The Dubai based-organisation run their two-year-old colt Outstrip in the Dewhurst Stakes, which is a prime pointer to next season’s English Classics.

The Australian-bred colt is joined on the card by Kassiano, who finished second to Hunter’s Light in Round 3 of the Al Maktoum Challenge at Meydan Racecourse in March. Kassiano takes his chance in the Group 3 Darley Stakes alongside French Navy, while Safety Check runs in the Group 3 Autumn Stakes, a race won 12 months ago by subsequent Irish Derby winner Trading Leather.

With Dubai so heavily involved in the promotion of the event, it is no surprise to see prominent owners from the Emirate with runners.

Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid, Sheikh Ahmed bin Rashid, Sheikh Juma bin Dalmook, Sheikh Mohammed Obaid, Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa and Saeed Manana all have horses across the £1.13 million (Dh6.6m) card.

Outstrip faces just five rivals, including Sheikh Hamdan’s Anjaal and Aidan O’Brien’s Royal Ascot winner War Command. Godolphin often rely on the supplementary entry process and paid £30,000 to enter Outstrip this week.

While trainer Charlie Appleby is oozing confidence over Mickael Barzalona’s mount, so are connections of Anjaal, who will be ridden by Paul Hanagan.

Anjaal beat Godolphin’s Figure Of Speech in the Group 2 July Stakes over six furlongs in July, and assistant trainer Richard Hannon Jr fancies turning over another Godolphin runner.

“Anjaal is in great form and has had a nice break,” Hannon said. “His work has been great and he’s in really good form.

“Quietly, we think he will run very well. He’ll love the extra furlong – he was only getting going in the last 100 yards in the July Stakes, so it will be massively in his favour.”

The forecast is unsettled, but if Newmarket does receive rain, it will not be in the favour of Outstrip, Anjaal or War Command and may well bring into play Stormardal, Ismail Mohammed’s outsider owned by Sheikh Juma.

Mohammed has been operating in Britain at a strike rate of 27 per cent this season, and having struck with Educate in the Cambridgeshire handicap a fortnight ago, his runner may well be a solid hope.