A belting card for flat fans over in Dubai this weekend as it’s the Dubai World Cup on Saturday won last year by the behemoth that was California Chrome. I’ve had a gander at some of the early prices dotted around so I thought it’d be rude not to do a post..
DUBAI SHEEMA CLASSIC
This years Sheema is headed by one of last seasons star flat performers in Roger Varian’s Postponed. He won this race last year in pretty emphatic style before going on to win the Coronation Cup and the Juddmonte and then finishing a slightly disapointing fifth in the Arc. He was however turned over at odds of 2/5 on his first start of this season when second behind Prize Money here in Meydan who’s a general 7/1 for this. However I believe that Postponed may of needed that run and I’d like to think he’d be primed and in the best possible condition to regain his crown here, making him my selection. There’s a couple of AP O’Brien raiders in firstly Breeders Cup Turf and King George winner Highland Reel and also Seventh Heaven. Another interesting one is Jack Hobbs, he ran a really strong race in third on Champions Day at Ascot on his return and 9/2 could be a big price if you fancy taking Postponed on. Postponed is my selection however, you can find him trading at around 15/8.
As it stands this race has got an absolutely belting line up, there maybe some alterations from now to Saturday obviously but if this lot line up against each other it’ll certainly be one hell of a race. It’s headed by an Aga-Khan horse in Zarak trading at a general 5/2, He won quite cosily last time out here at Meydan. He’s closely followed by Ribchester, who was a star performer on the flat over here last season finishing just behind Minding on Champions Day at Ascot after winning the Prix Jaques lE Marois beating Galileo Gold in the process, a repeat of any of them performances would obviously see him up there. Ultra consistent Mutakayyef is trading at around 4/1 for this, he’s never finished outside the top three in all thirteen of his runs and again, he is more than likely going to be involved in the thick of it when it matters. But, i’m going to take them all on with Decorated Knight. One of my personal favourite flat horses he’s trading at a general 10/1 for this. He’s won his last three including a quite recent success in a decent affair over in Meydan. I think it’s a cracking price for Roger Charlton’s charge to get in the placings at least.
AL QUOZ SPRINT
Now, this race is headed by two horses that I’m a huge fan of. Just edging favourtism is Ertijaal at about 15/8. He’s been absolutely devastating here at Meydan when powering away with an electric turn of foot in the majority of his starts, i’m certain he’ll be accompanied by champion jockey Jim Crowley too who has steered him to his successes this season taking over from Paul Hanagan. However he takes on my favourite flat horse, of whom for that very reason I can’t oppose in Limato. He had a tough time out at the Breeders Cup back in Novemeber when finishing down the field in sixth however he was devastating himself when winning at the Arc meeting before that. Obviously you could say Ertijaal has home advantage and is used to the course but I think Limato wins on the class front just and therefore will be my selection. AP O’Brien’s Washington DC could be a good shout for place money at 10/1.
DUBAI GOLD CUP
Another star studded field in this year’s Dubai Gold Cup headed by Varizabad trading at around 2/1. He was beaten last time out around here by second favourite Beautiful Romance when however travelling the better horse but being unable to reel the Godolphin charge in. I am backing him to reverse the form here though and take this. He’s a classy horse that has won eight of his eleven starts and he’s my selection to make it nine from twelve. British raiders Big Orange and Sheikhzayedroad wouldn’t be out of it by any stretch and there form from last season in big races could certainly see them running into the frame, they’re 7/1 and 10/1 respectively.
DUBAI WORLD CUP
This years World Cup is headed by last years Breeders Cup Classic winner Arrogate. He beat last year’s World Cup winner California Chrome in his previous two outings and I can’t see him getting beat here in all honesty. It’s certainly very hard to oppose him anyway. I’ve noticed that the Godolphin charge Emotionless in the betting for this, he’s a very interesting runner as he was a horse that had bags of potential as a two year old but kind of fell away, however he’s ran very well this season when trying his luck at Meydan finishing second and third. He’s trading at a general 33/1 for this and that could be a huge price for him if he’s feeling it on the day. I can’t see Arrogate losing but I certainly wouldn’t put you off backing Emotionless each way at 33’s.