x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 20 January 2018

Mickdaam overcomes stall trouble to win by a nose

Mickdaam's performance at the Group 3 Chester Vase has earned the horse a try in the English Derby at Epsom Racecourse for Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa.

Chester, England// Mickdaam will line up in the English Derby at Epsom Racecourse next month in the colours of Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa after winning the Group 3 Chester Vase on Thursday.

The son of Godolphin's Dubawi found trouble in the stalls when almost getting his head stuck in his starting gate.

After a tender ride by Tony Hamilton, however, the pair stalked their four rivals before injecting some pace into the race two furlongs from home around the outside of the tight track.

Mickdaam stuck to his task well in the short home straight and held off the fast-finishing Model Pupil, owned by Prince Khalid Abdullah of Saudi Arabia and ridden by Michael Hills, to win by a nose.

"When we pulled up Michael and I didn't know who had won," Hamilton said. "I only found out on the canter back when one of the girls in the stable yard shouted out to me."

It was Mickdaam's sixth race of the year, having been campaigned in Dubai by Mike de Kock.

Mickdaam won the Al Bastakiya at Meydan Racecourse in March before finishing fourth to Daddy Long Legs in the UAE Derby on World Cup night. He was then the runner-up to Rougemont at Newmarket last month on his first start on turf since October and he handled the rain-softened turf well on both occasions.

"The horse was with Mike de Kock for the Dubai Carnival because of the ban on horses shipping out from South Africa, but it was always the intention that he would come back to me," said Richard Fahey, the trainer.

"I thought he handled the conditions very well today. It will be fantastic to run him in the Derby."



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