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Geir Stabell runs the rule over the six races at Nad Al Sheba on Dubai World Cup night and picks out horses who are quite prominent in the betting but, in his opinion, have little or no chance of winning on Saturday.
DUBAI WORLD CUP
Only one horse makes appeal here, and you know his name. Curlin is different class in an otherwise disappointing field. Many will suggest each-way (win & show) bets on Jalil but I do have my doubts. Of course, he can improve again and he is capable of beating most of the others – but any horse that is ridden to beat Curlin on Saturday, may ‘collapse’ in the straight and drop out even of the first three. I have a sneaky feeling that Todd Pletcher is here to sneak out a big paycheck with A P Warrior. He is not a genuine Grade One horse but he stays forever, he will be at the back early on, and will probably be passing many in the straight.
Massive Drama will be in serious trouble in the home stretch of this classic. You normally need a 10-furlong horse to win the UAE Derby, and you need a horse capable of at least GF 115 to land the spoils. Massive Drama may have put in some sharp works in recent days but a stayer is one thing he is not, and he is not among the best in this field either. I’d be surprised if he finishes in the top three. This race will probably evolve around the filly Cocoa Beach, the two Mike de Kock runners and Strike The Deal from England. If there is to be a surprise package, I guess Rock Ascot is the one.
It is always dangerous to toss out one of the Americans in this event but Bushwacker is well below the class of Benny the Bull, Idiot Proof and Diabolocal, and I think we can forget him on Saturday. The winner is almost certain to come from the top rated trio. Esperamos is an unknown quantity, so I will not dismiss him completely but he takes a huge step up in class here.
Golden Arrow is as low as 8-1 with some bookmakers, in what looks like quite an open race on paper. He has run some good races in his career but let’s face it – he simply has no chance of winning the Godolphin Mile. Blackcat Blackitten and Elusive Warrior both have the measure of him on recent form, and they can both improve again – and if Diamond Stripes turns up in his best form he will probably beat them all.
Oracle West is a popular horse at Nad Al Sheba and he is quite prominent in the betting. Yes, he may run another solid race (he was second last year) but he is getting on a bit now, and he does not have the class to beat the best of these. Spring House has not beaten G1 class horses in California, and I would be surprised if he can mix it with the best here. Mourilyan is a nice horse and improving with every run – but, if he were to be good enough to beat Youmzain, Viva Pataca and Doctor Dino, he should have beaten Gower Song last time – even with a bad run.
DUBAI DUTY FREE
Creachadoir is not a horse I will say has no chance, at least not until we see the post position draw, as he is one of the five or six best horses in this field - but it is not easy to agree that he should be about the same price as Literato and Darjina. If one of those runs to form, Creachadoir will have to improve quite a bit to win – and he is quite an exposed horse. The two Japanese horses have just as good a chance, and they are twice his odds. If you like one of those, by the way, forget about backing them in the international pool, as Japanese racing fans are likely to pile on there – so look at bookmaker odds instead.
Published: 2008-03-26 07:56:03
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