Dubai World Cup sponsored by Emirates Airline Post- Position Draw Quotes:
Apollo Kentucky (USA)
Stall – 1
Kenji Yamauchi, trainer – “I didn’t really want the outside so I’m happy enough with an inside draw. I’ll have to wait to see if the horse can live up to his American pedigree on dirt.”
Stall – 9
Bob Baffert, trainer - “Nine is fine. The main thing for him is to get away then it’s up to Mike Smith to decide. I just didn’t want to be number 14 or on the inside otherwise it really didn’t matter. I know I have a great horse. If he just repeats his last race we’ll be in good shape.”
Stall – 7
Trainer Mikio Matsunaga - “It was a good draw. He always jumps well from the gate and number seven will give us some options.”
Furia Cruzada (CHI)
Stall – 8
Erwan Charpy, trainer - “It’s my first runner and it’s exciting to be here. We’ve got speed inside and outside and I’m happy enough with midfield. She’s adaptable. Realistically she’s an outsider but she’ll run to her best.”
Gold Dream (JPN)
Stall – 3
Osamu Hirata, trainer – “The draw is OK and the horse is very well. He won from gate 3 in the Grade Stakes last month so it should be a good sign.”
Gun Runner (USA)
Stall – 5
Scott Blasi, assistant to trainer Steve Asmussen - “We’re very happy with it. If we could have picked one it would have been the five or six so we’re happy.”
Owner Ron Winchell - “His last run set us up well for where we are today. He’s shipped well.”
Stall – 12
Bob Baffert, trainer - “They are lucky colours. He couldn’t be any better. He shipped well, he always get a piece of it and we hope one day he gets the whole enchilada.
“It’s good for him. He likes to be out in the clear and then he’ll come running.”
Keen Ice (USA)
Stall – 10
Jerry Crawford, managing partner Donegal Racing - “He does his best running late from the gates so the draw doesn’t make much difference.
“I was hoping for about the seven or eight and I got the 10. It was interesting where the other horses ended up, and I think it works out well for us. There’s a lot of speed near us so I think Javier [Castellano, jockey] will have a lot of choices. If he’s close enough when they turn for home he’s going to be tough to deal with for everyone, except maybe Arrogate.”
Stall – 4
Trainer Mikio Matsunaga – “We only had four and six left anyway, but this is a good draw. He’s not the type of horse who can settle from the front, he’s a hold-up horse. He doesn’t mind the kickback and he doesn’t have to travel wide from the draw, so I think it’s good for him.
Long River (USA)
Stall – 2
Salem Bin Ghadayer, trainer - “The draw is fine, of course I am happy with that. He showed his ability last time in the Al Maktoum Challenge Round 3 and I hope he repeats it . I’m so happy to just be in the race.”
Move Up (GB)
Stall – 6
Saeed bin Suroor, trainer: “He’s getting better all the time and it looks a good gate. The horse is doing really well since he came to Dubai
“I’m very happy it’s the best draw. I was left with six but if I could have chosen I’d have gone between five and eight anyway.”
Stall – 14
Trevor Brown, assistant to trainer Mike de Kock, said: “What can we do? We’re very happy with his progress since his last race. You have to take what you get.”
Stall – 11
Jack Wolf, Starlight Racing - “Lucky 11! The horse looked very good on the track this morning. It’s so far so good.”
“I was told that posts three through eight are where you want to be, but I can't complain about (11). Keen Ice is directly inside and he likely won't be quick away from there. Directly inside him is Arrogate, so we will know where he is immediately."
Special Fighter (IRE)
Stall – 13
Maria Ritchie, trainer - “Ideally I’d have liked to have been in six or seven so being out in 13 isn’t ideal and I just hope we don’t get trapped three wide. It’s not an easy draw as he usually races close to the pace and I just have to leave it to the jockey now.”
Earlier the UAE Champion Jockey, Trainer and Owner Awards were given out by the Vice-Chairman,Meydan Group Mr. Malih Al Basti. With 52 wins in the season, Richard Mullen was named UAE Champion Jockey, while 39 winners in the season gave Doug Watson a second consecutive UAE Trainer’s title. Khalid Khalifa Al Nabooda’s successful season with 32 winners earned him the Owners title.
Group 1 Kahayla Classic has a familiar look to it with three of the first four from the 2016 renewal clashing again
It may have a new time slot among the nine races but the only Purebred Arabian race on the card, the Group 1 Kahayla Classic empowered by IPIC has a familiar look to it with three of the first four from the 2016 renewal clashing again.
Over the same 2000m dirt course and distance as the Dubai World Cup, the Kahayla Classic has traditionally been the first race on the card but, this year, is the second and AF Mathmoon (UAE) should make a bold bid to become the third horse to win the race more than once.
Both Alanudd (1997-99) and Madjani (2005-07) actually won the race in three consecutive seasons.
AF Mathmoon is also seeking to become a third consecutive winner in the race for HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum with Dane O’Neill riding him to victory last year, as well as the same owner’s Manark, in 2016.
With Jim Crowley electing to ride AF Mathmoon, O’Neill partners Handassa (FR), trained in France by Francois Rohaut and fourth in the Kahayla Classic last year.
AF Mathmoon will be having his first start for Ali Rashid Al Rayhi who said: “He has settled in as well as could be expected and has seemed to handle the change in scenery, feed and regime well. Everyone knows he is a smart horse and more than capable of a big effort.”
Of Handassa (FR), winner of the course and distance prep, the Al Maktoum Challenge Round 3 a month ago, Rohaut said: “The faster the gallop the better for him as we saw four weeks ago. He has improved fitness wise and he should be running on in the straight.”
Runner-up 12 months ago was TM Thunder Struck (US), trained in Qatar by Alban de Mieulle where has won both his starts this year and, as he was last year, is the mount of Olivier Peslier.
“He arrivedand settled straight in,” said De Mieulle. “His final piece of work was before he left and it was a very good one.”
Of those who did not run in the 2016 renewal, this year’s 2400m Al Maktoum Challenge Round 2 winner, the Elise Jeanne-trained Faucon Du Loup (FR), along with Eric Lemartinel’s RB Burn (USA) look strong contenders.
Source: Dubai Racing Club