Globetrotting Beachy Head Makes Carnival Bid at Al Naboodah Saturday Meeting

Beachy Head on his way to the Parade Ring at Meydan
Photo:Dubai Racing Club//Andrew Watkins

Speedballs Clash as Dubawi Stakes-Winning Zabeel Team Combine with Akeed Champion in Opposition

Saturday’s Racing at Meydan meeting provides a number of horses with the opportunity to demonstrate their credentials for the ultra-lucrative Dubai World Cup Carnival season which runs concurrently at Meydan Racecourse until the Dubai World Cup at the end of March.

Among them is Beachy Head who, back at his home track following a 2016 campaign that saw him race in China as well as Korea, is set to face 15 rivals in the very competitive looking 1200mAl Naboodah Trophy on turf.

Trained by Ali Rashid Al Rayhi and the mount of stable jockey, Tadhg O’Shea, he is a winner already this season, having landed the spoils at Jebel Ali in early November.

“He is tough, honest and genuine,” said UAE Champion Jockey, O’Shea. “It is a competitive race but he is in good form and should be thereabouts.”

Among his opponents, and certainly with Dubai World Cup Carnival aspirations, is Godolphin new recruit, Acolyte, who is having his first start for Saeed bin Suroor having been trained by Roger Charlton for whom he won three times.

Yet to win on turf after six attempts, his new connections clearly feel he has the ability to run at the Dubai World Cup Carnival, thus his presence in Dubai.

“He is a nice, new horse for us,” said Bin Suroor. “He has been pleasing us at home and should run well.”

Having combined to win the Dubawi Stakes on Thursday, the Satish Seemar and Richard Mullen combination appear to hold leading claims here with Akeed Champion.

He was impressive when winning his first local turf outing, over 1400m at Abu Dhabi, and looked quick enough to cope with this 200m shorter trip.

“He won well at Abu Dhabi and seems in good form,” said Mullen. “There should be plenty of pace in the race which will suit him and we expect a big run.”

Another who merits serious consideration is Lytham St Annes, trained by Doug Watson and the mount of Pat Dobbs.

He ran just once last season, when fourth over 1400m on the Meydan turf and has had just a solitary outing this campaign when staying on well over 1400m at Jebel Ali.

“We were very pleased with that Jebel Ali run and he showed a great attitude,” said Watson. “The return to turf will hopefully suit him and the shorter trip will hopefully not inconvenience him.”

The best of the dirt action is also a 1200m handicap, the Al Naboodah Lighting and Electricals Trophy for which nine have been declared.

Watson’s Mathematics arrives here on the back of consecutive victories, both at Meydan and most recently over this 1200m.

“This is a tougher race but he is in good form,” said Watson. “Conditions obviously suit him and we are hopeful.”

That most recent victory was achieved at the expense of the Musabbeh Al Mheiri-trained Shoreditch who is back in opposition under Pat Cosgrave.

He should not be far away from the business end of the race, while O’Shea and Al Rayhi combine with Mutahaddith, a dual course and distance winner in January last year.
He too should go close in a fascinating clash of speedsters.