Photo: Dubai Racing Club//Andrew Watkins
Anaerobio continued his perfect assault upon this season's carnival with a stunning and somewhat easy victory in the GII Al Fahidi Fort on Thursday.
Mike de Kock's seven year old son of Catcher In The Rye was seen at his very best in this seven furlong turf contest, as he burst to the lead with considerable ease halfway into the straight with considerable ease before repelling the late charge of Frankie Dettori aboard Mshawish to retain a commanding three-quarter length margin at the wire.
A dual Argentinian Group 1 winner in his three year old season, Anaerobio had failed to deliver the promise which the Mike De Kock team had hoped he was capable of in carnivals of the past, but his return to a third carnival has already reaped the rewards that continue to erase that previously marginal disappointment.
Victory in the Al Fahidi Fort for Anaerobio provided trainer Mike de Kock with his fifth victory in the race as part of a double on Thursday's card after the earlier success of Alexandra Palace. The well being of De Kock's string was further evident with a duo of strong second placed finishes thanks to Merhee and El Estruendoso.
"I was impressed as he showed real good acceleration and is clearly a good horse," said winning jockey Christophe Soumillon. "Mike [De Kock] may go back to the turf with him, but he'll improve for this run. He settled well today, and is not an easy horse and one that you need to know well, but he loves the 1400m trip around here and has a nice turn of foot."
A three time winner over seven furlongs at Meydan, with his only defeat over the distance still seeing him fill the placings in third, it is evident that Anaerobio continues to thrive over the fourteen-hundred meters distance on both the tapeta and turf, but the continuing progression of Mike De Kock's surprise early season star may force the hand of the yard to seek out further riches and an increase in distance.
In the event that Anaerobio does indeed step up in trip, with Soumillon citing a possibility for the horse returning to the turf, the Group II Zabeel Mile looks to be the perfect spot for us to witness this exciting, progressive seven year old challenge his younger and more European-familiar foes next.
What is clear is that Soumillon has unlocked the key to enabling Anaerobio to deliver his most potent of finishes, and that alone will strike fear into any rival whom opt to challenge him this season at Meydan.