Bin Suroor Seeks Fourth Dubai Gold Cup Victory

Cavalryman On Song For Back-to-Back Wins in Stayers’ Race

Upgraded to Group 2 status this year, the 3200m Dubai Gold Cup sponsored by Al Tayer Motors is the first of the Dubai World Cup day turf races and has been dominated by the Godolphin trainers since it was first contested in 2009.

Saeed bin Suroor will be seeking a fourth win in the race and saddles Cavalryman (GB), winner of the race last year and bidding to become the first dual winner of the most recent addition to the Dubai World Cup card.

The comfortable winner of the Group 3 Nad Al Sheba Trophy, over 2800m, on his seasonal return four weeks ago, he looks the one they all have to beat.

However Bin Suroor’s chances of Group 2 glory in this race do not begin and end with Cavalryman. Stable companion, Songcraft (IRE), won a 2400m handicap at the Dubai World Cup Carnival in February before an excellent second in the Group 2 Dubai City of Gold on Super Saturday, over the same trip.

Bin Suroor said: “Cavalryman won very nicely on his seasonal return four weeks ago and has been freshened up for this race. He won it last year so we know 3200m is fine and his last piece of work, last Saturday, was very good.

“Excellent Result has been running well and we hope the 3200m will suit him.”

Star Empire (SAF), second to Cavalryman in the Nad Al Sheba Trophy, was fifth in this race 12 months ago and it is hard to see an obvious reason why he should reverse form with Bin Suroor’s crack stayer.

Third in the Nad Al Sheba Trophy was Irish challenger Certerach (IRE), two places ahead of compatriot Simenon (IRE) who was noted staying on strongly under jockey, Ryan Moore. Trained by Willie Mullins, Moore’s mount on that occasion has not won since Royal Ascot in June 2012 but has run some great races in defeat, including an excellent fourth in last year’s Melbourne Cup.

Mullins said: “The extra distance is in our favour but Cavalryman is going to be hard to beat.”

However, it looks significant that Moore rides Joshua Tree (IRE) in the race for Ed Dunlop while Pat Smullen comes in for the mount on Simenon.

Sixth in Super Saturday’s Group 1 concluding round of the Al Maktoum Challenge, Joshua Tree and Moore won last year’s Group 1 Canadian International, a 2400m contest the horse had also won in 2010 and 2012.

Dabadiyan (IRE), like Certerach, is trained by Mick Halford with stable jockey, Shane Foley, electing to ride the former.

They are part of a very strong Irish contingent which also includes the John Oxx-trained Saddler’s Rock (IRE), seventh behind Cavalryman last year, when his saddle slipped, but only 11th behind that same rival four weeks ago.

Ernest Hemingway (IRE) is an interesting contender for Ireland’s Champion Trainer, Aidan O’Brien and this dual Group 3 winner looks the type his trainer does particularly well with in these staying races.

As well as the Godolphin duo of Cavalryman and Songcraft, Certerach and UK raider, Sheikhzayedroad (GB), both won at the 2014 Dubai World Cup Carnival, while the Satish Seemar-trained Ralston Road (IRE) won on the all-weather at a Meydan Racecourse domestic meeting in December.