Thunder Snow could prove worthy in 2018 Dubai World Cup prep
January 09, 2018 06:05am

By Christine Oser

Thunder Snow
, best known for his rodeo-like performance in the 2017 Kentucky Derby, is now taking aim at the 2018 Dubai World Cup.

According to, their 4-year-old colt will run in Thursday’s Group 2 Al Maktoum Challenge Round 1, a one-mile race over Meydan’s dirt surface, before any further decisions are made.

During last year’s Dubai World Cup Carnival, Thunder Snow won the Group 3 UAE 2000 Guineas, the same distance as his upcoming race, and the Group 2 UAE Derby at 1 3/16 miles. He made his U.S. debut in the Kentucky Derby, where he was left bucking in the mud as the rest of the field ran their race.

Back in Europe, Thunder Snow picked up a second and two thirds in Group 1 company on the grass and topped his season with a victory in the Group 1 Prix Jean Prat. In his last race of the season, the Group 1 Queen Elizabeth II Stakes, he finished last of 15.

“Thunder Snow has been doing well out in Dubai,”
trainer Saeed bin Suroor told Godolphin. “We gave him a nice break after his last run in the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes, when the ground was very soft.

“He has been working well and it’s a case of so far, so good with him. He has won twice on the dirt at Meydan before, so the return to the surface will be no problem, and he is ready to make his first start of the year.

“We will see how he gets on this week before making any plans for later in the Carnival and Dubai World Cup Night.”

As far as other familiar names, trainer Jorge Navarro has said the Dubai World Cup is possible for both Sharp Azteca and War Story, who will first compete in the Jan. 27 Pegasus World Cup at Gulfstream Park. Douglas Watson also has Candy Boy, a 2014 Derby runner, back in training in Dubai and will try him in a later round of the Al 
Maktoum Challenge.


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