Arabian Racing Review
Hereford 28th June Review
by Paul Simmons

1st race – Shaw & Fox Maiden Stakes 3yrs old and over 1 Mile 1 Furlong:
They went a fair clip from the outset in this competitive maiden with odds on joint favourite Barik, Sifan and Billoube all showing good early speed, and Marsak settled comfortably in behind. Inside the final two furlongs it became a dual to the line with Billoube and Marsak, who were nip and tuck all the way to the post with Phil Collington driving HH Sheikh Hamdan’s strapping Derby entered colt Marsak (Al Sakbe x Margau) home to win by head from the Mark Wall owned and trained Billoube (Bengali D’Albret x Billou Al Maury). The latter lost nothing in defeat and is impressing with every run and looks more than capable of winning a maiden. Few and Far (The Wiking x Elina Des Fabries) made some good late progress in the closing stages plugging on well for third.

2nd race – The Come Racing with ARO Handicap Stakes 0-75 over 7 Furlongs:
A small field but nevertheless a really competitive handicap. Musaayar made the running and set a decent pace from the start but Muhal was cruising in behind. Muhal kicked clear in the final four furlongs with Musaayar chasing hard in behind, he was kept up to his work in the final furlong but was off the bridle in the dying strides and only galvanised his effort as Musaayar came back at him under a strong ride from Simon Walker. In the end Muhal (Amer x Babelia) got home by a nose for owner/ breeders the Royal Cavalry of Oman and trainer Julian Smart, whilst Musaayar lost nothing in defeat. Al Mamoon ran a lifeless race and only ran past a lack lustre Remaal in the final stages to claim third.

3rd race – The Jebel Ali Racing Club Handicap Stakes 0-50 over 1 Mile 6 Furlongs:
Bonham (Bakara x Bonnie Jet) returned to form with a vengeance under a superb ride from Sam Holdsworth for owner/trainer Chris Culleton, he had him handily placed throughout tracking long time leader El Hamsa and rode a powerful finish to just get up on the line by short head in battling head bobbing finish. El Hamsa (Nasem x Myska) was very brave in defeat and is impressing with his attitude this term and was unlucky not to get up. Whilst Anganate Safinat (Manganate x Astree) did the best of the rest and took third from Dibba inside the home straight.

5th race – The Royal Cavalry of Oman Handicap 0-95 over 1 Mile 1 Furlong:
A surprise result here as odds on favourite and former Qatar Derby winner Zoumir. Mustajib (Vadeer x Mangana) ran well last season winning twice and did nothing wrong here settling well mid field under an in form Simon Walker. He brought Mustajib with a strong run inside the final furlong and showed a useful turn of foot to power clear in the final furlong and win by a length a the line for HH Sheikh Hamdan and trainer Bill Smith. Back in second was Merwah (Bengali D’Albret x Aksarka) who is continuing her upward climb racing this season, always well placed, she took up the running two furlongs out and chased the winner all the way to the line but couldn’t get past. Zoumir (Dormane x El Ouarda) ran well on his UK debut and led the field till five furlongs out before being swamped by the first two, that said to his credit he plugged on for third but was ultimately disappointing; he holds an entry in the UK Derby but will have to improve significantly to hold his own against the best of Europe.

7th race – The Jebel Ali Racing Club Handicap 0-60 over 7 Furlongs:
A superb performance by Sue Connally’s gallant handicapping mare Raihan (Passem Lotois x G Sustika) who led from start to finish and battled on really well in the final furlong under a galvanised ride from Simon Walker (who was scoring a hatrick), to hold off the sustained challenge of Pinkie Tuscadero (Izentespeshal x Altyv). The latter ran a great race under Phil Collington and looks capable of winning in this grade soon. Whilst Benny The Dip (Bengali D’Albret x Duiker) was always handy chasing the principles and was kept up to his work in the final stages to get home from The Way To Go.

8th race – The “Carabineer” Memorial Handicap 0-70 over 1 Mile 6 Furlongs:
A superb racing finish in fitting tribute to the memory of the late great Arab racehorse Carabineer, who himself fought out and won so many memorable battles on the UK racetrack. Debrett and Operatic set off like scalded cats from the start blazing a trail and taking it in turns to lead at various stages throughout the race. In the end it was David Turner on Debrett (Bengali D’Albret x Djeba El Mels) for owner Linda Cross and trainer Sam Davison who gained the upper hand inside the final furlong coming home a length too good for a very brave Operatic (Vert Olive x Operetta). The latter lost nothing in defeat and is running his heart out this term and could easily reverse the form next time out. Whilst Notid (Tidjani x Sherrie Noreen) relished the step up in trip and stuck on well to snatch third off Blu By You in the final furlong.


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