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Barbecue Eddie Serves Up Victory In Al Maktoum Challenge Round 1

Ready Eddie`s Tally Stands At Four In A Row

Doug Watson saddled his biggest Thoroughbred winner when ultra popular Barbecue Eddie won the featured Group 2 Thoroughbred version of the Al Maktoum Challenge Round 1, at the opening meeting of the 2013 Dubai World Cup Carnival at Meydan on Thursday evening.

Recording his seventh Meydan victory, Barbecue Eddie was also winning at his fourth consecutive Dubai World Cup Carnival race and recording his third course and distance victory this season.

Dane O`Neill was never far off the pace on nine-year-old ‘Eddie’ who battled well to lead 300m out and galloped all the way to the line.

“His target is the Godolphin Mile – a race he sadly had to miss last year due to illness – and we will look after him.

“He owes us nothing and we will space his races out with World Cup night in mind. He may be nine now but he retains his ability and has proved this 1600m to be ideal on an all-weather surface he just loves.”

Like the Thoroughbred version, the Group 1 Purebred Arabian equivalent is over 1600m and it was a great result for owner Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan and trainer Majed Al Jahouri who supplied a 1-2-3. Ahmed Ajtebi made all on Areem to post an easy win and he said: “He is a very good Purebred Arabian and I imagine we will wait for the final round of the Challenge on Super Saturday.”

Godolphin trainer Saeed bin Suroor was another to saddle a 1-2-3 with Royal Empire and Silvestre De Sousa running on too strongly for stable companions Kassiano and Start Right.

Jockey and trainer immediately doubled up with the very impressive Sharestan winning the 1800m Al Rashidiya Trial on the turf. De Sousa always looked confident and impressed his trainer.

“We thought Sharestan was going to perhaps need a run and the fast ground was a slight concern but he did it very well,” said the trainer. “It is a good start to the year as this is an important time for Godolphin as it is the beginning of our long season.”

Like Areem, Sharestan broke the course record, as had Fityaan earlier in the first race on the Meydan turf this season. That was over 1000m and Paul Hanagan was in the saddle for his main employer HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum. The winner is trained by Musabah Al Muhairi.

The first international winner was supplied by Ireland and Ger Lyons who saddled Lily’s Angel to win a 1400m Tapeta handicap and provide her jockey Gary Carroll with a first UAE winner.

“We were very hopeful and have been aiming her at the Carnival specifically once she showed she handles these all-weather surfaces,” said Lyons. “She is improving and can hopefully continue to do so.”

Racing concluded with a 1400m turf handicap and Champion Jockey, Tadhg O`Shea was seen at his very best – producing the Abdulla bin Huzaim-trained Le Drakkar to lead close to home and deny Tamaathul.