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Listed Sprint Highlights Jebel Ali Card

Jebel Ali’s penultimate meeting of the season, on Friday afternoon, is highlighted by the Listed Jebel Ali Sprint, a 1000m dash for which seven go to post including course specialist Muarrab.

One of two runners in the race owned by HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, who sponsors the race through Shadwell Farm, Muarrab has won six of his seven visits to Jebel Ali.

The only time he failed to win on the track was his very first effort, over 1400m, but he has subsequently won four times over 1200m and twice over the same 1000m course and distance as Friday’s feature.

His most recent victory, a fortnight ago, was in the official prep race for Friday’s contest and also over 1000m. He carried a penalty on that occasion but always looked likely to win despite conceding weight to his nine rivals.

He is ridden by the owner’s first jockey, Paul Hanagan, who won twice on the horse in England when he was trained by Ed Dunlop. He was also in the saddle for three of his local victories.

“He is a real star, especially up the hill at Jebel Ali,” said Hanagan. “It was a really good performance in the prep considering he was giving weight away. He has so much speed I was never worried on that occasion and hopefully he will be very hard to beat on Friday.”

Satish Seemar has trained the winner of this race on four occasions and two of his previous winners are seeking a second victory .

Both Try Prospect (1996&1997) and Russian Rock (2012&2013) won this race in consecutive seasons and Seemar’s Take Ten will try and emulate them having denied Fityaan in the dying strides last season.

No horse has regained the title, a statistic Take Ten’s stable companion, Spin Cycle, will be looking to remedy having landed this prize in 2011.

Trained by Doug Watson, Kilt Rock was second in 2013, as well as finishing third in 2012 and fourth last year.

The mount of Pat Dobbs, he is owned by the Emirates Entertainment Racing Club (EERC) and has undergone surgery for a wind issue since last seen in mid-January.

“I saw him work the other morning and he went very well,” said Justin Byrne, the EERC spokesman. “We decided in January he needed the operation with the aim to get him back for this race.
“Obviously Muarrab will be hard to beat but we are hoping for a good run on a track he goes particularly well on.”

Try Prospect’s trainer, Dhruba Selvaratnam, is seeking a sixth win in the race in total and relies on Morawij who chased home Muarrab in the prep. He will be ridden by stable jockey, Oisin Murphy.

“He ran well last time and has been working well,” said Murphy. “Obviously Muarrab is the one we all have to beat but we will certainly try our best.”

With the Salem bin Ghadayer team in good form, dirt debutant Blessington may prove pick of the rest although it should be pointed out apprentice Saeed Al Mazrooei cannot utilise his claim in this Listed grade.