x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Ibn Abeya charges to victory in Derby

Robbie Burke and the Samir Hawaa-trained Ibn Abeya landed the UAE Arabian Derby, the highlight of Sunday evening's racing at Abu Dhabi.

ABU DHABI // Robbie Burke and the Samir Hawaa-trained Ibn Abeya landed the UAE Arabian Derby, the highlight of Sunday evening's racing at Abu Dhabi. Ibn Abeya's charge in the 11-furlong contest was perfectly-timed by Burke, who had been happy to race off the pace in the early stages. As the runners swung for home, he sent his mount after the leaders, hitting the front inside the final furlong and winning going away.

Burke said: "I was not worried about his stamina as I was certain he would stay. I knew he had a turn of foot as he showed when I won on him last time." He denied Rod Simpson's Jazeerat Alsadyaat but the English trainer won the Emirates Fillies' Classic with the easiest winner of the night. In the mile contest for four-year-old fillies bred in the UAE, a field of 16 went to post but Simpson's Men Abu Dhabi, under Daragh O'Donohoe, was the only horse who mattered.

Sent straight to the front, she galloped all the way to the line to finish 15 lengths ahead of her rivals. Simpson, who had earlier won a seven-furlong maiden with the Sophie Doyle-ridden Kelmat Alser, said: "She is a lovely filly but we were not expecting that kind of victory. I have trained a lot of winners over the years but few have won like that!" There was one thoroughbred race on the seven-race card and the concluding mile handicap was won by William Buick on Dhruba Selvaratnam's Jaasoos.

There were also wins for Wayne Smith on Musabah Al Muhairi's Jazy King, Tadhg O'Shea on Fakhruddin Nizamuddin's Sharudy and Keagan Latham on Mohammed Ramadan's King. jsullivan@thenational.ae