Mystic Guide, Magny Cours and Gifts Of Gold spearhead Godolphin charge at Dubai World Cup - GulfToday

Mystic Guide, Magny Cours and Gifts Of Gold spearhead Godolphin charge at Dubai World Cup

Mystic Guide

Mystic Guide during a morning workout at the Meydan Racecourse in Dubai on Friday.

Gulf Today, Staff Reporter

A trio of intercontinental contenders with vastly different profiles – Mystic Guide, Magny Cours and Gifts Of Gold – go for glory in the G1 Dubai World Cup Sponsored By Emirates Airline at the Meydan Racecourse on Saturday.

All three horses are seeking a breakthrough first victory at the highest level in the 10-furlong highlight of Dubai World Cup night, with Mystic Guide (Luis Saez) having progressed in each of his seven appearances for Michael Stidham.

The four-year-old makes his first start outside of the US on the back of a dominant six-length victory in the G3 Razorback Handicap at Oaklawn Park at the end of February.

Mystic Guide has yet to finish out of the first three and the Ghostzapper colt rounded off his three-year-old campaign with victory in the G2 Jim Dandy Stakes and a rallying second in the G1 Jockey Club Gold Cup.

Godolphin’s leading runner came out to the Meydan dirt track at 7am and had an easy gallop around the track before gate schooling for the second consecutive day.

“He had a nice easy gallop,” Stidham said. “That was the plan and he went well. Yesterday he was a little anxious in the gate, but today was better. He walks right in as soon as they put the strap behind him.”

Lightly raced, the homebred 4-year-old colt makes just his eighth start on Saturday. “He just has flourished here,” Stidham continued. “Every day I’ve been watching his weight and seeing if his coat was changing, but he’s been perfect. I’m amazed at how well he’s taking all of this.

 “It’s a long trip for Mystic Guide and you always worry about the things that could go wrong but the horse seems to be really flourishing in Dubai. He is thriving on everything that is going on and is doing fantastic. “It’s an honour and a privilege to be here, especially training a horse for Sheikh Mohammed. I just can’t wait to get on the racetrack.”

The master French trainer Andre Fabre has won most of the world’s top races and is hoping that he can finally add the Dubai World Cup to his impressive record on Saturday when he saddles the Godolphin owned Magny Cours

Gifts Of Gold (Christophe Soumillon) drops back down in trip after galloping out resolutely to score over a mile and seven furlongs in the Red Sea Turf Handicap in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, in February.

The six-year-old, whose trainer Saeed Bin Suroor is bidding for a 10th Dubai World Cup win, finished down the field in the G2 Al Maktoum Challenge R1 at Meydan in January, but routed the opposition in an all-weather handicap at Chelmsford City, UK, in August.

Suroor said: “Gifts Of Gold is doing well. When he won by six lengths over a mile and a quarter at Chelmsford City last year, it gave me the confidence to bring him out to Dubai. He ran in the Al Maktoum Challenge – R1, which was a prep-race for Saudi Arabia.

“People asked me why Gifts Of Gold was running over nearly two miles in Saudi Arabia but, in my heart, I thought that he could run well over the distance. He won nicely there and the Dubai World Cup looks an open race this year.”

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