Having just his fifth career start, in a contest restricted to 4yos and 5yos born in the UAE, the Khalid Khalifa Al Nabooda homebred trained by Ernst Oertel, hit the front in the final 200m but had to dig deep to deny challenges from Yas Xmnsor and Hakaam.
Following the UAE government’s decision to move its weekend to Saturday and Sunday, this sixth meeting of Jebel Ali calendar has been dubbed the ‘Deira’ and a seven-race card is what awaits the thousands that are expected at the racecourse.
Dettori had previously secured the Dubai World Cup on Dubai Millennium, Moon Ballad and Electrocutionist, but this was the first time he had done so in colours other than those of Godolphin.
"The Dubai World Cup has become one of the world’s biggest and most anticipated equestrian events. Over the years, the meeting has attracted the most elite professionals in this sport and has left an influential imprint in the world of horse racing," Sheikh Mohammed said.
One of those was compatriot Shahryar, who himself was prominent but boxed on at the far rail to repel the challenges of Pyledriver and the fast closing Yibir — who closed all the way to the line down the stand-side rail.
Prepared by this season’s UAE champion trainer-to-be Bhupat Seemar, Switzerland recorded one of the most popular victories of the night — at least judging by the Meydan crowd reaction — with a roar erupting when Tadhg O’Shea pulled the local hope out to the centre of the track.
“This was his first time running this well on firm ground and in the past he’s run well on softer ground, so taking him over to Europe is high on his to-do list. We’d like to head to Royal Ascot for the Prince of Wales’s Stakes.”
Breaking out of the 20th post, Rich Strike was well back in the field of 20 as they turned for home, but Leon patiently guided him through the throng on the Churchill Downs dirt track.
The race held with the support and directives of Sheikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, witnessed the participation of 141 riders from various clubs and stables of the country.
Racing at Meydan on Thursday features a Stakes race apiece for both the Purebred Arabians and the Thoroughbreds, the latter, the Listed Dubai Creek Mile the most valuable race on the card and attracting a field of 11, including last year’s winner, Thegreatcollection.