Maktoum II: Blatant vs. Lundy’s Liability, Jack Sullivan
by Handicappers (email@example.com) / Globeform (http://www.globeform.com)
Last update: 2007-02-19 09:33:06 (First published: 2006-02-07 06:15:58 )
Nad Al Sheba 9 Feb: Blatant ran out an impressive winner of round one of the Sheikh Maktoum bin Rashid Al Maktoum Challenge (G3).
In the process Princess Haya’s horse also won ‘round one’ against Lundy’s Liability, who was a distant third and ran well below form on his return to the desert venue.
The pair meet again in round two of the Maktoum Series, a three-race program leading up to the Dubai World Cup (G1) in March. Blatant is sure to go off favourite, following his near ten-length win last month.
Two factors should not go amiss though. Firstly, this means stretching out in distance, a change that will be much to Lundy’s Liability’s liking. Secondly, don’t forget how Mike de Kock’s runners have moved up over the past two weeks. Perhaps Lundy’s Liability will follow suit – and give Blatant more to think about in this 9-furlong test.
SAKHEE SHEIKH MAKTOUM BIN
RASHID AL MAKTOUM CHALLENGE R2 (G3)
Nad Al Sheba 9 February 2006 – 1800 metres / 1 1/8 miles dirt
119 – BLATANT (Machiavellian) K McEvoy
119 – LUNDY’S LIABILITY (Candy Stripes) W Marwing
116 – JACK SULLIVAN (Belong to Me) E Ahern
114 – CHIQUITIN (Fitzcarraldo) M Kinane
110 – ECCENTRIC (Most Welcome) J Murtagh
107 – ELMUSTANSER (Machiavellian) R Hills
103 – BALDAQUIN (Barathea) P Dillon
…? – NED KELLY (Goldkeeper) D Maroun
…? – TABLEAU (Marquetry) R Bouresly
Blatant produced his lifetime best performance in round one of the Maktoum Series, as he powered away for a 9 ¾-length win over a mile - and returned Globeform 119. He had shown high class form earlier in his career, but this win took him to a new level. He was racing with great zest throughout and was much, much the best horse in the field. He is stepping up to 9 furlongs here, something that may not be ideal. He is still impossible to oppose. He was running on well at the end and we should also note how well he had run over a mile in the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes (G1) at Newmarket last September. That is a straight mile – and a testing mile.
Blatant’s surprise third behind Starcraft and Dubawi in the Queen Elizabeth – when he was acting as a pacemaker for Dubawi – looked like a ‘fluke’ at the time. Even more so when he disappointed next time out but his seasonal reappearance at Nad Al Shebe proves that he belongs in G1 company. The Dubai World Cup (G1), howver, is hardly going to suit him. Running over 1 ¼ miles, against even better opposition, is unlikely to make him a winner. Which is why connections will have decided to take full aim at the Maktoum Series. While Lundy’s Liability’s connection are likely to use the Maktoum Series as a step by step program leading up to the big one, Blatant was really fit for round one. And he should be in the same form for round two. In all probability, he will win again.
Lundy’s Liability ran way below his best form last time. Finishing third, he ran to no more than GF 97+. It was a disappointing run. Having given up the fight against Blatant, he was also passed by Cherry Pickings in the closing stages. At he best, Lundy’s Liability was a G1 performer. The question must be; will he ever return to that kind of form?
Quite clearly, he needed the run last time – as he had not run since performing well below his best in last year’s Dubai World Cup (G1). He has now rejoined Mike de Kock’s stable. He won the UAE Derby (G2) for them here in 2004, and his subsequent form in USA – where he was trained by Bobby Frankel – was even better. At his best, Lundy’s Liability is capable of Globeform 119. He ran to that mark when he beat the in-form Truly a Judge by 1 ½ lengths in the 9-furlong San Antonio Handicap (G2) at Santa Anita last winter.
Plus points as he tries to gain revenge on Blatant are the distance and the fact that de Kock’s results have improved markedly on the last two racedays. Also, Lundy’s Liability should step up after having made his comeback. The trouble is; he is facing a big step – if Blatant reproduces his run.
Jack Sullivan won this event last year, and he had a most profitable Carnival. He came back to turf in England last summer, and managed to improve again when second to Layman in the Sovereign Stakes (G2) over a mile at Salisbury. Jack Sullivan is a genuine performer who can be expected to run well first time out. He is the one most likely to profit, if one of the big guns fail to fire.
A: 2 BLATANT
B: 6 JACK SULLIVAN, 7 LUNDY’S LIABILITY
2 EXACTAS: 2 with 6, 7
2 TRIFECTAS: 2 with 6, 7 with 6, 7
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