Selvaratnam celebrates anniversary in style

Racing returned to the UAE on Friday afternoon with a six race card at Jebel Ali and the featured 1000m handicap was won, fittingly, by My Verse, trained on the course by Dhruba Selvaratnam.
The Sri Lankan is celebrating 20 years at Jebel Ali and My Verse, a four year old daughter of Exceed And Excel, stormed to success in the sprint, kindly sponsored by the Derrinstown Stud of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, under Willie Supple.
She is owned by the trainer`s main patron and racecourse owner His Sheikh Ahmed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and Selvaratnam was delighted: "It has been a great privilege to train at Jebel Ali all this time and working for His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Rashid Al Maktoum has been brilliant. There has been a lot of change in that time.
"She (My Verse) is a nice filly but probably better over further so we have to be very pleased."
Supple completed a double when partnering the Erwan Charpy-trained Cho Cho Fever to make a winning debut in the 1400m maiden. A three year old son of Stormin Fever, he has not been easy to train but Charpy clearly likes the horse.
He said: "He is a nice colt and can hopefully progress from here. It was a weak race but he has done it well."
Also in double form were trainer Doug Watson and jockey Pat Dobbs. They combined to win the opening two races, a 1600m handicap and 1950m handicap with Gulf of Gold and Hunters` Glen respectively.
Watson said: "That is a great way to start the season and we have to be happy as the horses seem fit and well. It is nice to get back in action and we can hopefully have a good campaign."
The concluding 1400m handicap was won by Rochefort for trainer Satish Seemar and jockey Richard Mullen, while the 1200m handicap went to Celtic King. Trained by Musabah Al Muhairi, he quickened well to land the spoils under Wayne Smith who said: "He is a grand horse and been a great servant to the yard. He goes well fresh and we were hoping for a big run."