Dubai favorite Heavy Metal preparing for an encore season

Dubai favorite Heavy Metal preparing for an encore season
Photo: Dubai Racing Club

Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Maktoum’s Heavy Metal has one way of running: faster than everyone else, from beginning to end. The son of Exceed and Excel did his father’s name proud during the 2017-2018 Meydan season, racing six times and winning four, including the Group 2 Godolphin Mile on Dubai World Cup night.

In addition to that gate-to-wire win, the bay gelding won the Firebreak (G3), Al Maktoum Challenge Round 1 (G2) and Dubai Creek Mile — all in similar fashion. A 15-time winner from 59 starts, the British-bred Sandeep Jadhav trainee is likely to kick off his season with a defense of his Al Maktoum Challenge Round 1, a race in which he defeated subsequent Dubai World Cup winner Thunder Snow last season.

“He’s in good form and doing really good as a whole,” Jadhav said. “He’s galloping well and in good shape, so that is great to see. We have breezed him four times so far, but he never actually shows a lot of speed at home. In the race, it is totally different.

“He’ll go after the first round of the Maktoum Challenge, hopefully,” he continued. “That might change, you never know, but we’ll go for that first.”

The only blemishes on last season were a tired fourth in the Burj Nahaar (G3) on Super Saturday behind well-regarded Doug Watson trainee Kimbear and a third to Thunder Snow when stretching beyond his scope in the Al Maktoum Challenge Round 2 (G2).

Heavy Metal has raced 21 times at Meydan and has eight victories since his local bow on February 28, 2015. His long and storied career commenced in mid- 2012, highlighted by a win in the Richmond Stakes (G2) for then-trainer Mark Johnston.

Heavy Metal could be on a collision course with Godolphin Mile runner-up Muntazah, who returns on Sunday at Abu Dhabi in the National Day Cup over a turf mile. Owned by Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the well-regarded son of Dubawi has been impressing trainer Watson, who said that coming back in the same Al Maktoum Challenge Round is a possibility for the multi-surface specialist. 

The race runs Jan. 10 at Meydan.

 

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