Godolphin Mile: Jack S., Marbush, Blatant…
by Handicappers (firstname.lastname@example.org) / Globeform (http://www.globeform.com)
Last update: 2007-02-19 09:35:26 (First published: 2006-03-23 14:30:38 )
Nad Al Sheba Saturday: Three names stick out in the Godolphin Mile (G2). Three with solid form over the track already at this Carnival, but they will face shippers from Europe, Japan and USA this time.
THE GODOLPHIN MILE (G2)
Nad Al Sheba 25 March 2006 – 1600 m / 1 mile dirt
Horses presented with best Globeform, sire and rider.
Globeform ratings are expressed in pounds (1 length = 2lb).
117 – MARBUSH (Linamix) J Murtagh
117 – BLATANT (Machiavellian) K McEvoy
116 – JACK SULLIVAN (Belong to Me) E Ahern
116 – COURT MASTERPIECE (Polish Precedent)
115 – ISLAND FASHION (Petionville) M Pedroza
114 – UTOPIA (Forty Niner) Y Take
110 – LUNDY’S LIABILITY (Candy Stripes) W Marwing (GF 119 Feb. 05)
108 – SHAMOAN (Monashee Mountain) J R Velazquez
108 – WIN RIVER WIN (Virginia Rapids) GF 108 / H Karatas
107 – HOLIDAY CAMP (Chester House) W Smith
Marbush has shot up the ratings in his last two starts and he must have a good chance on landing this event as well. One can argua that he is moving up in class again, but there is nothing wrong with his GF 117 produced when he beat Win River Win by 7 ¼ lengths in the Burj Nahaar (G3) on Super Thursday. Marbush was impressive that day. It was the same distance as the Godolphin Mile and a repeat performance will make him hard to beat. As Blatant seems to have lost his edge, Marbush is the narrow selection.
Blatant produced his best performance in round one of the Maktoum Series, as he powered away for a 9 ¾-length win over a mile - and also returned Globeform 117. 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.
His surprise third behind Starcraft and Dubawi in the Queen Elizabeth II (G1) last year – 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 proved that he is very smart - he could well win again here.
Jack Sullivan was an easy winner of the Maktoum Challenge II (G3) – a race he won also last year – but there is no evidence of improvement from last year. He ran to GF 114+ on his seasonal debut, compared to GF 116 at his best last season. This course and distance suits him really well and he must be respected. His rest since winning has been by design. He came back to turf in England last summer, and ran his best race to date when second to Layman in the Sovereign Stakes (G2) over a mile at Salisbury. Jack Sullivan is a game and genuine performer. He is more reliable than Blatant.
At he best, Lundy’s Liability was a G1 performer – in fact better than all of these – but he has been very dull at this Carnival and is probably a spent force. He won the UAE Derby (G2) in 2004, and his subsequent form in USA – where trained by Bobby Frankel – was even better. 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.
Court Masterpiece was an upset winner of the (sub-standard) Prix de la Foret (G1) over 7 furlongs at Longchamp last autumn. He is a tough and battle hardened performer but, as his best form previously had been over the speedy Goodwood track, one may ask; will he truly stay a mile on dirt?
Island Fashion has no such worries, having been runner-up in the 10-furlong Santa Anita Handicap (G1) earlier in her career, but with her one has to question recent form. If she is back in shape, she can be a danger to all, as she gets that valuable fillies’ allowance – and she knows how to roll late when others are under pressure.
Utopia was a game third to Kane Hekili last time out and the Japanese runner could give us a clue to the big one here.
A: 6 MARBUSH
B: 1 BLATANT, 4 JACK SULLIVAN
WIN: 6 Marbush
6 EXACTAS & 6 TRIFECTAS: 1 – 4 – 6 boxed / combined
DUBAI GOLDEN SHAHEEN (G1)
Nad Al Sheba 25 March 2006 – 1200 m / 6 furlongs dirt (straight)
Leading contenders presented with best Globeform, sire and rider.
Globeform ratings are expressed in pounds (1 length = 3lbs).
125 – HEART ALONE (Music Prospector) K McEvoy
118 – CAPTAIN SQUIRE (Flying Chevron) V Espinoza
114 – TROPICAL STAR (Machiavellain) R French
114 – PROUD TOWER TOO (Proud Irish) D Cohen
113 – GAFF (Maria’s Mon) S Bridgemohan
110 – CONROY (Gone West) GF 116 in 2005 / 104+ (26Jan) J Murtagh
110 – JET WEST (Western Fam) G Gomez
108 – THOR’S ECHO (Swiss Yodeler) C Nakatani
106 – HOWICK FALLS (Stormin Fever) T O’Shea
Heart Alone looks the standout win bet on the day. The Brazilian sprinter may not pay much over 2-1, but if he reproduces his course and distance form that is going to be great value in the Dubai Golden Shaheen (G1).
The 5-year-old was deeply impressive on his UAE debut in the Najah Al Shindagha Sprint (G3) in January, when he carried a G1 penalty to an effortless 3 ¼-length win over Conroy (who often runs well fresh), with Thajja, Safsoof and Tropical Star filling the next places. Conroy and Tropical Star are among the best sprinters in Dubai, but Heart Alone really turned this contest into a one-horse affair.
Travelling strongly throughout 6-furlong the race, he went ahead on a tight rein and jockey Mick Kinane hardly moved a muscle as the horse drew off – he had been imposing in the paddock, and he was even more so in the finish. Heart Alone could have won by further. He returned Globeform 125+, the joint-highest rating achieved so far at the Carnival (same as Electrocutionist).
The form is quite solid. Runner-up Thajja is no star but went on to run respectable races behind Kodiac and Rock Music in competitive handicaps. Safsoof was third in Rock Music’s race, his next start after the Al Shindagha. Tropical Star, who finished second, just a length behind Saratoga County in the 2005 Golden Shaheen (G1), has given Heart Alone’s form a double boost since. He has won both his subsequent starts, beating Emerald Beauty in a handicap and taking the Mahaal Al Shimaal (G3) readily from Azul Da Guanbara. That was the final prep to the Golden Shaheen, and Karlo Guitar (who was 7th in the Al Shindagha) finished fourth, with Conroy fifth.
These will not be the toughest rivals for Heart Alone in the Golden Shaheen (G1) – a race attracting five North American sprinters; Captain Squire, Proud Tower Too, Thor’s Echo, Jet West and Gaff. They all have smart form but none of these horses are in the same class as previous US winners Saratoga County, Caller One and One New Recruit. Captain Squire, who is capable of Globeform 118 on his day, is the best of the quintet but he has not shown such form for a while.
Heart Alone has nothing to fear from the sprinters seen out earlier at the Carnival, and as the US team is a bit sub-standard this year, he is impossible to oppose.
The son of Music Prospector showed smart sprinting form also in Brazil in 2005, when landing the Grande Premio Major Suckow (G1) at La Gavea in August, running 1000 meters in :55.7 seconds. That win was assessed to GF 119+ and Heart Alone seems to be an improving older horse. He way to big at 3-1 in the betting and must be backed. With such a good price there is no reason to risk anything in exotics.
GLOBEFORM SELECTION: 5 HEART ALONE
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