x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Raihana comes good in time for Derby

Atoning for her disappointing run as fourth in the 1,000 Guineas, Raihana now joins Musir on trainer Mike de Kock's list of UAE Derby hopes for World Cup day.

Raihana, in front, ridden by jockey Christophe Soumillon, is followed over the line by Bikini Babe at the Dubai Racing Carnival at Meydan Racecourse last night.
Raihana, in front, ridden by jockey Christophe Soumillon, is followed over the line by Bikini Babe at the Dubai Racing Carnival at Meydan Racecourse last night.

DUBAI // The trainer Mike de Kock would appear to be double-handed in the UAE Derby after his filly, Raihana romped up in the UAE Oaks at Meydan Racecourse last night. Atoning for her disappointing run as fourth in the 1,000 Guineas, Raihana now joins Musir on de Kock's list of Derby hopes for World Cup day. This time she reversed the form on a number of those horses in a race that panned out much more to her liking. "I was disappointed with the run last time because I know how good this filly is," said de Kock, who won three races in total on Thursday night. "But this was a completely different race. We didn't think they would go that slowly last time, but today she has been able to get in a good position and really show her class."

Raihana, bred by her owner Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa like Musir, was picking up a first UAE Oaks for de Kock. Second was the Mark Johnston-trained Bikini Babe under Kieren Fallon while Siyaadah, ridden by Ahmed Ajtebi for Godolphin was third. "They went a decent pace and I was able to put her where I wanted and then make my move," said Raihana's jockey, Christophe Soumillon. De Kock also won the Meydan Horizons with Mr Brock under Kevin Shea. The jockey and trainer combination doubled up in the mile-long IMAX Cup with Lucky Find. Godolphin were not to be kept out of the prizes though. The boys in blue silks landed three, claiming the first with Antinori for Ahmed Ajtebi and Frankie Dettori scored on a rejuvenated Midshipman who cruised to victory in the seven furlong Meydan Metropolis. He was making up for a disappointing fourth in the Al Maktoum Challenge Round I.

Sabotage, running in the colours of Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed, claimed the battle of the stayers on the turf for Godolphin's Saeed bin Suroor in the DRC Gold Cup for jockey Mickael Barzalona. Dettori followed him home on Age of Reason. The Saudi Arabia-based Jerry Barton claimed the other fillies and mares race of the night, the Balanchine. Deem took advantage of a slowly-run race to get up by a short head from Godolphin's Aspectoflove. Rashid Bouresly scored his first win when Star Crowned, piloted by Royston Ffrench last night, took the six-furlong Meydan Museum Handicap. Star Crowned's brother, Bab al Bahrain runs for Bouresly at Jebel Ali Racecourse today. stregoning@thenational.ae