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Five cents value in final Jebel Ali feature

The curtain comes down on the 20th anniversary season at Jebel Ali with a cracking six-race card highlighted by a 1400m handicap, kindly sponsored by Shadwell, the UK arm of the breeding operation of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

Twelve have been declared with the in-form Emirati trainer Ali Rashid Al Raihe responsible for three. Al Raihe, last season’s UAE Champion Trainer will retain his crown and stands a full baker’s dozen ahead of the second placegetter, Doug Watson.

Of his three runners in the feature race, stable jockey Royston Ffrench will ride the top-weight Five Cents. He won a course and distance conditions race four starts ago but has suffered three defeats since, most recently in Doha in a valuable Group 2 contest.

He is joined in the field by three-year-olds Noor Zabeel and Factory Time who will both be having their first starts on dirt and will be ridden by apprentice jockey Saeed Al Mazrooei and Silvestre De Sousa respectively.

Al Raihe enters the meeting having remarkably saddled the winner of the previous six Thoroughbred races in the UAE and said: "We have had an amazing season from the outset and the horses have been in great form. Last weekend was a particularly good one with five winners on Saturday and a big race win on Sunday. Five Cents goes really well at Jebel Ali and should run another big race, while the other pair will hopefully act on the surface and are nice young horses."

Noor Zabeel and Factory Time are both owned by Jaber Abdulla as is Youm Mutamiez who had Five Cents among his victims in a course and distance handicap four weeks ago.

Trained by fellow Emirati Musabah Al Muhairi, stable jockey Wayne Smith rides Youm Mutamiez and said: "He has won both his 1400m starts at Jebel Ali but struggled over 1200m in between. Conditions are ideal but this is a tougher race. That said, I am expecting a big run."

His first course and distance victory was achieved at the expense of Steed, to be ridden by Tadhg O`Shea for Doug Watson, while the Satish Seemar-trained Escape Route chased home Five Cents on his penultimate start before winning a course and distance conditions race at Jebel Ali a fortnight ago.

The meeting and 2011/12 Jebel Ali season concludes with a 1200m conditions race and Fityaan, trained by Al Muhairi for His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, will be a final Jebel Ali mount for the owner`s retained jockey Richard Hills who retires after next week`s Dubai World Cup meeting.

Hills has finished second on Fityaan on both his Jebel Ali starts – on both occasions chasing home stable companion Russian Rock over 1000m – in the Jebel Ali Sprint and the prep race. The step up in trip should suit and Hills said: "It was nice to get a farewell winner at Abu Dhabi on Sunday and it would be lovely to leave Jebel Ali with at least another winner. Fityaan deserves a bit of luck and should at least go close in a hot little contest."

Sheikh Hamdan actually owns five of the 16 runners with second jockey Tadgh O`Shea on Mujaazef for Al Raihe, and Smith on Kanaf, a stable companion of Fityaan, looking best of the rest. The other 2 runners, Murbeh (Al Raihe) and Tagseed (Al Muhairi) will be ridden by Silvestre De Sousa and Mohammed Islam.

Dhruba Selvaratnam, who trains on the track for racecourse patron His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, is another who will be particularly keen to get on the scoreboard at the final meeting and his Alo Pura looks a big danger and hoping for home team advantage.