Calvin Borel, who won an unprecedented third Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) in four years while aboard Super Saver in 2010, will represent the United States in the Meydan Masters jockey competition in Dubai Feb. 17-18.
In his second journey outside of the United States for such a contest, Borel will ride against the best jockeys in the world, including Ryan Moore of Great Britain, Hiroyuki Uchida of Japan, Johnny Murtagh of Ireland, and Italian-born Frankie Dettori, who is the top retained rider for the United Arab Emirates-based Godolphin stable.
“I’m very excited. This is unbelievable—a very big honor,” Borel said Feb. 8 from his current base at Oaklawn Park. “My agent (Jerry Hissam) and I work hard, and I’m very fortunate to be here in this position.”
Borel and his wife, Lisa, will be in Dubai from Feb. 14-19 and will be treated to a variety of special events in conjunction with the Meydan Masters, a highlight of the ongoing Dubai International Racing Carnival. This will be their first trip to Dubai.
“They’ve sent me some information and pictures, and it’s amazing,” said Borel, who is looking forward to the opportunity to meet owners and trainers, and possibly return for the $26-million Dubai World Cup (UAE-I) program March 26.
The 45-year-old Louisiana native said he has fully recovered from the broken jaw he suffered in a fall when his mount bolted in the Delta Downs Jackpot (gr. III)) in November. Borel won the first race on Oaklawn’s opening program this year.
In 2009, Borel won a race in the World Super Jockeys series in Japan and finished fifth of 15 riders overall who had been selected to compete in that prestigious event.