Sunday January 6, 2013, Abu Dhabi, Press Release ~ Owner HH Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, trainer Ernst Oertel and Champion Jockey Tadhg O’Shea were the combination to follow at Abu Dhabi on Sunday evening, winning both of the featured Purebred Arabian contests.
The official highlight was the Listed opening round of the Arabian Triple Crown and O’Shea was able to produce Shayel Aldhabi (Bibi De Carrere (FR) – Anshoudat Farah (AE) by Chaikh to lead close home, despite a less than smooth passage, and deny stable companion Wycked in the 1600m feature.
“We had a bad draw and I just could not get cover when I wanted so we have been forced to stay quite wide. And then I have had to wait to make my challenge but she is a quality filly and has really helped me out. Remember, she is a local-bred taking on USA and French Arabs so that is a really good effort.”
Half an hour earlier, Seraphin Du Paon (Akbar (FR) – Bint El Bedia (TN) by Elias) won the prep race for HH The President’s Cup for a second year running for the same connections. Seraphin Du Paon won both HH The President’s Cup and Dubai Kahayla Classic in 2011 and O’Shea said: “He is a quality horse, we all know that and he will be running in all the big races again. Once I found a gap we were always on top and we will be back in four weeks for The President’s Cup itself.”
AF Sanadek (Burning Sand (US) – Fauvette Al Maury (FR) by Djouras Tu) continues to improve and landed his sixth consecutive success and third this season in the opening 1600m handicap with Gerald Avranche in the saddle for trainer Eric Lemartinel. Avranche said: “He has done that nicely enough but is going to be a better horse on an even faster surface. Hopefully there is more to come from him.” AF Sanadek is owned by Khalid Al Nabooda.
The only Thoroughbred race was a 2200m handicap and Doug Watson saddled the winner in the shape of Mantoba who made all under an inspired Kieren Fallon. Twice a winner in the UK as a juvenile for Brian Meehan, Mantoba has appeared at the two most recent Dubai World Cup Carnivals but was opening his local account on this occasion.
Fallon said: “He is a horse I know from England having won on him there and I was pleased we had a low draw so I could race prominently on him. Nobody wanted to lead so I was happy to and he was always finding plenty in the straight.
“I am really looking forward to the Dubai World Cup Carnival starting next week and it is nice to get a winner on the board early in the year. All the top jockeys are here at this time of year and it is a great place to be.
“I have not started on the Purebred Arabians this season but will do soon hopefully.”
The penultimate race, a 1600m conditions event, was won by Prime D’Or with Saber Trabelsi in the saddle for Ibrahim Al Hadhrami.
The final race, a 1600m maiden, was won by Duzar (Munjiz (FR) – Koralya De Nerak (FR) by Dormane) with Carlos Sanchez in the saddle and producing his mount to lead in the dying strides for trainer Majed Al Jahouri.