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Longines Dubai Sheema Classic & Dubai Turf Sponsored by DP World Notes, Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Photo: Deirdre (DRC/ Neville Hopwood)

$6 million Longines Dubai Sheema Classic (G1)

Cloth of Stars – Cloth of Stars was in great spirit when he came onto the dirt track at the Meydan racecourse at 5am. He was cantering behind stable companion Trais Fluors, who is going to run in the Dubai Turf, when he was doubled by a Japanese raider. As a consequence, he was very keen over the last half of the 1400m workout.

The pair had been watched by Lisa-Jane Graffard, the Godolphin representative, who said: “He is not the easiest ride and he got a bit lit up this morning, but Claude (his exercise rider) has a great relationship with him and has the measure of him.”

Hawkbill – The Dubai City Of Gold Sponsored by Emirates Sky Cargo (G2) winner competed his preparation for Saturday when switching from the dirt to the grass at Godolphin`s private training facility, Marmoom, pleasing his trainer Charlie Appleby.

The 5-year-old was a European Group 1 winner in his younger days and has turned into a reliable international campaigner with his recent Meydan success and the likes of his second in the Northern Dancer Turf Stakes (G1) last September.

“He was trapped out wide last time but he showed his class late in the race and galloped out well,” Appleby said. “He came out of the race well and heads into Saturday in good shape.”

Despite having a preference for soft turf in his early days, Appleby is unconcerned about quicker conditions.

“The rain didn`t come in Canada and he put up a very good performance there and he was also third in the Coronation Stakes at Epsom,” Appleby added. “Soft ground does give him an advantage but he is versatile and handles quicker ground.”

Idaho – Idaho, like all of Aidan O’Brien’s horses, was still in quarantine on Wednesday morning and is expected to clear by Thursday training.

“We think and we hope there could be a big race in him this year,” trainer Aidan O’Brien said. “He placed in an Epsom and Irish Derby as a 3-year-old and he won the Hardwicke Stakes at Royal Ascot last year so he is the makings of a Group 1 winner.”

Poet’s Word – Thursday last week in Newmarket was the time and place for Poet’s Word to complete his serious preparation, leaving trainer Sir Michael Stoute’s travelling head groom Sarah Denniff and work rider Chas Robertson to keep the 5-year-old son of the recently-deceased Poet’s Voice ticking over.

Poet’s Word, runner-up in two Champion Stakes as a 4-year-old, has kept to the brief, and on Wednesday he wound up perhaps the most casual exercise of any horse who stepped on to either of Meydan’s tracks. He walked a circuit of the turf course, before putting together half-laps of trotting and very steady cantering.

“I was told to look after him, which I did,” Robertson said. “He’s done plenty of work before he came out here.”

Denniff, who is awaiting Stoute’s arrival on Thursday, added, “I’m very happy with him. He’s done all his work at home, finishing with his gallop on Racecourse Side (in Newmarket) last week, and he’s travelled very well. He’s a fit horse.”

Stoute is aiming to win the race for the second time. His first success came in 2000 with Fantastic Light, who was beaten a nose by Stay Gold when attempting the double a year later. His Spanish Moon also went down by a nose, to Eastern Anthem, in 2009 and was beaten about a length when third to Dar Re Mi the following year.

Rey de Oro – Reigning champion 3-year-old of 2017 in Japan, Rey de Oro went 1000m over the turf course this morning under jockey Christophe Lemaire and moved easily in his final fast work before Saturday. “He was perfect.” Lemaire said.

Usual work rider Daisuke Tsumagari added: “He is in great condition. We have decent confidence in our chances this weekend but we will still try our best.”

Satono Crown – Multiple G1 winner Satono Crown not come out on to the track and stayed in the quarantine stable at Meydan.


$6 million Dubai Turf sponsored by DP World (G1)

Benbatl – Godolphin handler Saeed bin Suroor is set to saddle three runners, headed by Benbatl who, along with all the handler’s big night runners, cantered 2000m on the Al Quoz all-weather surface on Wednesday morning.

“After an excellent piece of work - his final gallop - on Sunday he should be spot on for Saturday,” Bin Suroor said. “It is a very strong race but, with a good draw, he should run a very big race.”

Crocosmia – Japanese mare Crocosmia worked 600m over the dirt track this morning, setting easy fractions.

“She has reached peak condition I think. She had good rhythm today,” exercise rider Hiroya Kitazoe said. “Since she is likely to go forward we’d like a post somewhere in the middle or slightly more on the outside, but in the end if she breaks well she’ll should go forward easily. We are really looking forward to this weekend.”

Deirdre – Group 1 winner Deirdre jogged and warmed up before galloping on the turf under work rider Yuta Komiyama. “I did not feel that the track was as firm as I originally thought, because it was very wet this morning. She responded well to my urging and moved nicely. I do not want to draw too far on the inside.” Komiyama said.

Promising Run – Won both the Cape Verdi and Balanchine before finishing fourth, on Super Saturday, in the Group 1 Jebel Hatta, the latter two efforts both over the same 1800m as the Dubai Turf.

Trainer Saeed Bin Suroor said: “Obviously Benbatl is our main chance, but Promising Run is a course and distance winner who has thrived in Dubai this year. She worked very well, over 1400m here at Al Quoz on Sunday, as did Leshlaa. Saturday is, as you would expect, a very strong race with some excellent horses but our three are all in great form.”

Lancaster Bomber – “The fast ground will be to his liking,” trainer Aidan O’Brien said. “He has developed into a very nice 4-year-old and he’s a very hardy horse.”

Monarchs Glen – Worked on the Meydan training track at 8am under Tony Proctor. The progressive Juddmonte home-bred son of Frankel rounded his 2017 season off with a victory in a Group 3 Newmarket on October 14.

“He’s travelled over well and seems to be enjoying himself,” Thady Gosden, assistant to his father John, said. “I think he’ll keep doing a similar thing on the training track ahead of Saturday’s race.”

Neorealism – Did not come out on to the track and stayed in the quarantine stable at Meydan.

Real Steel – Worked 600m over the dirt track under work rider Ryusei Sakai.“He is doing really well. We are back for revenge so I hope all goes well this weekend.” said trainer Yoshito Yahagi as he took his charge to school in the paddock.

Vivlos – Posted a sharp breezed 800m over the turf course under usual work rider Shinji Yasuda.
“She is doing remarkably well,” trainer Yasuo Tomomichi said. “She is eating and moving well and is full of energy this morning. We pushed her a little bit to get her sharp and she delivered. We are looking forward to Saturday.”