x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Red Desire steals the show

Japanese horse spoils Godolphin's quartet glory as the boys in blue finish Super Thursday with three winners.

Red Desire, piloted by jockey Olivier Peslier, steals the march over the others at the Medyan Racecourse on Super Thursday night.
Red Desire, piloted by jockey Olivier Peslier, steals the march over the others at the Medyan Racecourse on Super Thursday night.

A Japanese horse did win the Al Maktoum Challenge Round III at Meydan Racecourse last night, but it was not the one most people had been expecting as Godolphin were denied a quartet of winners on Super Thursday. Vodka, the two-time Japanese horse of the year, Godolphin's Cavalryman and Gloria de Campeao were fighting it out to win the feature race when Red Desire floated easily down the outside to snatch victory. Now Tokyo Horse Racing Association, the filly's owners will have to decide whether to run their horse in the Dubai World Cup or the Sheema Classic on March 27 "She came here and did what exactly she needed to do," said jockey Olivier Peslier, who took the ride for trainer, Mikio Matsunaga. Godolphin did have the consolation of winning three races completing a hat-trick for Dettori.

Desert Party has had problems with injury and had not been seen since finishing down the field in the Kentucky Derby but he appeared to have no problems with a drop down in trip. The perfect gap opened for Frankie Dettori on the inside rail around the home bend and he scooted clear, leaving enough in the tank to repel Mutheeb with something to spare. "We knew he was a good horse but he's had 10 months off and for any athlete to pitch back into a big race like tonight, to win is a pretty good achievement," Dettori added. "I didn't expect him to win as I knew the horse would improve but now we have the choice of two races on World Cup night in either the sprint or the mile." Campanologist was making his first start since October and he won the Group Two Dubai City Of Gold for the Al Quoz outfit.

"Mentally and physically he has improved a lot since last year," said Saeed bin Suroor, the trainer. "This year we have been lucky with him, he's happy, sound and healthy. "He was carrying a little condition and will improve a lot from this race. I think he will be a Group One horse in Europe this year. He's improved and more focused." Godolphin also won the Al Bastakiya with Mendip while Richard Hills rode a confident race for Brian Meehan to claim the Burj Nahaar on Cat Junior. stregoning@thenational.ae