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O`Shea Shines as Shayel Aldabi claims National Day Prep

Oertel in Double Form

One constant so far this season has been Champion Trainer Ernst Oertel claiming at least one winner at every meeting he has saddled runners and he maintained that record at Abu Dhabi this evening with a double ridden by Champion Jockey, Tadhg O’Shea.

Pride of place undoubtedly went to Shayel Aldabi, winner of the 1600m National Day Cup prep for the Purebred Arabians. She broke well enough but O’Shea was clearly determined to settle her in rear and let the race unfold behind a reasonable pace set by Adrian Nicholls on stable companion, Munzade.
Turning for home, O’Shea eased his mount closer and she was able to dart through a gap on the rail to lead inside the final 200m and win going away.

O’Shea said: “That is a big effort from a young filly against the more experienced colts. She has a touch of class and the yard’s horses are in great form.”

A delighted Oertel added: “She was Champion Filly last season so we needed to test her up in class and she has responded in the best possible way. We have made a great start and hopefully we can continue.”

Gali Rich, easy winner of the opening 1600m maiden, initiated their double.

The pair basically led all the way and O’Shea said: “I was keen to be positive and get to the front and the tactics worked. I was pretty much in control most of the way and it has been a couple of good days after my Sharjah treble yesterday."

Oertel added: “He did that well and it is great when the horses are in this kind of form.”

O’Shea then completed a winning treble aboard debutant, AF Rahia in a 1400m maiden, completing a double for trainer, Ibrahim Al Hadhrami and owner, Khaldid Khalifa Al Nabooda.

O’Shea said: “That has been another great evening and this filly was impressive – she could be a star of the future.”

Derbaas repeated his win of 12 months ago in the only Thoroughbred race on the card, the 1600m prep for the Listed National Day Cup, which he also won in 2012.

Trained by Ali Rashid Al Raihe for HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, he led 200m out under the owner’s retained jockey, Dane O’Neill but only just resisted the renewed challenge of War Monger, also owned by Sheikh Hamdan.

The pair drew well clear and O’Neill said: “I knew I was in front 50m out and it was on the nod but my lad is nothing if not determined.

“He won the National Day cup last year and will surely have a big chance again in three weeks time.”

In the opener, Gali Rich was shedding his maiden tag at the third attempt whereas the following 1400m maiden was won by a debutant, the Al Hadhrami-trained AF Al Hazer.

Ridden by Royston Ffrench, the newcomer was slowly away and appeared clueless in the early stages but, under Ffrench’s encouragement, stayed on strongly in the straight to lead on the line.

French said: “He was very green early on but as the penny dropped he picked up the bit and I was able to get to the rail. That helped and he ran on well.”

Trainer Jaber Bittar has made a bright start to the season, when his Sneer Al Reef won under Jesus Rosales. “That is my first winner of the season,” said Rosales. “Obviously it is nice to get that first one out of the way. I had to come from a fair way back but he ran on well when I asked.”