After finishing a narrowly beaten 2nd to Light The Lights last time out in the listed Singspiel Stakes, Championship proves much the best this time around, soundly defeating both Flash Fire in 2nd and Noah From Goa in 3rd to win the G2 Al Fahidi Fort at Meydan.
Don't get me wrong, I like Ring Weekend, but even in the states he's really only a G2/G3 type. He's not even legitimately a G1 horse in the states, which is why I say he'll get hammered if he goes to Royal-Ascot for the Queen Anne in my opinion. Tepin is among the very best of the best turf milers in the sport, and even her win in last year's Queen Anne wasn't a picnic and didn't come easy. I could end up being wrong, but I'd be hard pressed to see Ring Weekend even hitting the board in the Queen Anne, much less winning it. That being said, I know Graham Motion is originally from the UK and enjoys taking some of his better horses to Royal-Ascot when he gets a chance, and I would surely wish the connections of Ring Weekend all the luck in the world if they go?
@SharedBelief1, I've liked this filly since I first saw her last winter at Meydan during the Dubai Carnival when she was still in Mike De Kock's yard. She may have played second fiddle to Polar River in the UAE Oaks and to Lani in the UAE Derby, but she's been steadily progressing and running really well since arriving in the states. I'm definitely a Vale Dori fan, but with that being said, I think she's still got quite a bit of improving to do before she'd ever be any kind of real threat to Songbird, IMO. That's assuming Songbird comes back as dominant as a 4YO as she was as a 3YO.
Assuming he manages to get into the field on world cup night, I'm tipping this horse right now as one to look out for in this year's G2 Godolphin Mile. I've been following North America's progression during Meydan's winter meeting and now at the carnival and the switch from racing on turf in the UK to racing on conventional dirt in Dubai has done wonders for this horse. To date, he's an unbeaten 3 for 3 on Meydan's main track. North America broke his maiden during the winter meeting in November by 8 easy lengths off a mark of 75. A second winter meeting start in December produced an 8-3/4 length romp over Muhtaram in the EGA Potlines Trophy Handicap off a mark of 86. Upped 14lb. by the official handicapper at Meydan before his first carnival start, he then defeated Heavy Metal by 1-1/4 lengths off a mark of 100. After that win he was upped again to a mark of 106. If he continues this type of progression throughout the rest of the carnival, definitely a horse to keep an eye out for, IMO.
On second look at the replay, the margin of victory was actually a little further than a nose. More like a long neck.
2013 Dubai Golden Shaheen winner, Reynaldothewizard, nails 2016 Dubai Golden Shaheen winner, Muarrab, by a nose in the final strides to win the listed Dubawi Stakes at Meydan, giving Reynaldothewizard 3 straight wins in the race.
Le Bernardin wins best turned out and the G2 Al Maktoum Challenge Rd. 1 on opening day of the Dubai Racing Carnival 2017.
@mid holly, wondering the same thing myself? Unless there was some kind of injury or something I'm not aware of, I have no idea why they wouldn't want to let this colt race on next season as a 3YO? All I know is he's being advertised as being new to Kildangan Stud for the 2017 season.
My Catch, trained by Doug Watson, springs the upset beating G1 Dubai Golden Shaheen winner Muarrab handily by nearly 5 lengths in the listed Garhoud Sprint at Meydan.
I remember his winning the Epsom Derby and the King George both on the mighty Shergar back in 1981 when he was only 19 years old like it was yesterday, because it had been about a year prior to that I had started avidly following the sport on a worldwide basis. Especially the top turf events. I also remember when he took that horrible spill at Sha Tin in 1996 and was placed in a medically induced coma for 4 or 5 days with severe head and chest injuries, only to return to riding 6 months later, and would go on to win the Breeders Cup Turf on Pilsudski later that year. Walter was a very gifted rider from an early age with a great pair of hands,
and he always seemed to make just the right judgments in big races. I totally agree that 55 was far too soon to lose him.
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