x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 20 January 2018

Seemar claims bragging rights over Watson at Meydan Racecourse

Dubai Carnival beckons for Reynaldothewizard after Barbecue Eddie and Happy Dubai are upstaged at Meydan Racecourse.

Satish Seemar at Meydan Racecourse.
Satish Seemar at Meydan Racecourse.

The master got the better of the apprentice last night when Satish Seemar's Reynaldothewizard gained revenge over Barbecue Eddie, trained by Seemar's former pupil, Doug Watson, in the Al Dana Wealth Management conditions race at Meydan Racecourse.

Barbecue Eddie beat Reynaldothewizard when the pair clashed in February during this year's Carnival with Watson's charge prevailing in a near-record time and by almost three lengths.

The tables cannot have been turned more emphatically, however, and back at level weights and over a trip 200m shorter Reynaldothwizard can be rated the better horse over 1,200m.

Seemar's five-year-old won on his only other start over 1,200m, winning a useful handicap at Meydan 12 months ago and the Carnival must surely beckon.

The race was supposed to be all about Happy Dubai, who won three races from five at this year's Carnival before finishing five lengths adrift of JJ The Jet Plane in the Al Quoz sprint on World Cup night.

Ali Rashid Al Raihe had stated before the race that his four-year-old was ready to race, despite being off the track for 200 days. Considering the master of Grandstand stables had sent out 18 winners from just 87 runners prior to last night the racing fraternity were inclined to believe him.

It was not to be, however, as Royston Ffrench chased a furious pace which was set by Wayne Smith aboard Russian Rock. The field covered the first 400m in just 25 seconds and from there Happy Dubai could not find an extra gear. French was carried wide aboard the big-race favourite and despite carrying top weight of 61kgs the pair held on for fifth behind Russian Rock and Seachantach, also trained by Seemar.

If Happy Dubai lacked a gear change, Canwinn had an engine that put to shame the Rolls Royce Thoroughbred Coupe that was being paraded before racing at Meydan last night.

In the final 300m of the Attijari Points Rewards Programme conditions race the five-year-old came with a scintillating run under James Doyle to deny Tamaathul, who scraped the rail for second under Richard Hills and Al Farahidi, who led for much of the race for rider Ahmed Ajtebi.

Sporting the yellow and black silks of Sheikh Ahmed bin Rashid, Doyle anchored his mount at the rear of the field as Al Farahidi, owned by Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed, and Zain Shamardal duelled for the early lead.

Doyle, however, has been making the most of the opportunities afford him by the absence of William Buick at Dhruba Selvaratnam's stables and his classy victory adds to the hat-trick of wins he enjoyed at Meydan last month.

With ten runners spread across the card it was almost impossible to believe that al Raihe could leave Meydan without a visit to the winners' enclosure and the Emirati picked up the Al Dana Visa Infinite Card Maiden with Street Act.

Watson was also not to be denied, and the master of Red Stables won the opening Arabian race, the Mazrat Al Ruwayah Prep with Kandar Du Falgas, ridden by Hills.


* Compiled by Geoffrey Riddle