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Jaber Bittar Doubles Up in Abu Dhabi Classics

Photo: Erika Rasmussen (www.erikarphotography.com)

Trainer Lands Colts and Fillies Features

Trainer Jaber Bittar was the man to follow in ‘The Classics’ at Abu Dhabi on Sunday evening, saddling Nawarat Al Reef to win the Abu Dhabi Fillies’ Classic before, 30 minutes later, his Meftah Al Reef landed the Abu Dhabi Colts’ Classic both over a mile.

Jesus Rosales was in the saddle on Nawarat Al Reef, making only her second racecourse appearance after a promising third on her debut over 1000m on the Sharjah dirt.

Seemingly struggling early on, they rallied to lead close home to the delight of Rosales.

“She made a very good debut over a trip probably too short, said Rosales. “She has more than coped with these different circumstances and, hopefully, is a filly with a bright future.”

Just 30 minutes later trainer Bittar was celebrating a second ‘Classic’ winner after Meftah Al Reef and Wayne Smith claimed the Abu Dhabi Colts’ Classic. Never far off the early pace, Smith went for home early in the straight and the pair never looked likely to be caught.

“This is always a good yard to ride for,” said Smith. “They have plenty of nice horses so you always know you have a chance. This fellow had already won on dirt at Sharjah so is clearly versatile.”

The official feature, the Group 3 Abu Dhabi Championship, like both ‘Classics’ over 1600m, was won by AS Enjaz, ridden by Silvestre De Sousa for his main employer, Musabah Al Muhairi.

The pair made virtually all the running and De Sousa said: “The plan was always to be positive and it worked well. Every time I asked he found and that was a good win.”

The only Thoroughbred race on the card, a 1400m handicap, went to Royal Revival, a first winner of the season for apprentice, Marc Monaghan, riding for his boss, Satish Seemar.

Elsewhere, Sam Hitchcott won the 1600m maiden for Bakhit Al Ketbi aboard Barek W’Rsan and Eric Lemartinel combined with Gerald Avranche to land a 1200m handicap.