MIKE de Kock has eight runners carded at the second Dubai Carnival meeting at Meydan on Thursday evening, 16 January.
Mike stressed that the former South African runners that recently arrived in Dubai would all need their outings and said: “They came out of quarantine just a month ago and none of them are at peak fitness.”
Team Dubai: Mike with Trevor Brown (shades) and Steven Jell (greying, binoculars).
Photo: Jessica Slack.
Mike previewed their respective races:
R2. UAE 1000 Guineas Trial, 1400m, all-weather track:
Magrooma (Christophe Soumillon); Magroora (Thierry Thulliez)
“We’ve had to push them to race, we have no option, and we’re using this race as a good gallop for them. We know what they’re capable of, both should run well but will improve. Preference is for Magrooma.
R3. UAE 2000 Guineas Trial, 1400m, all-weather track:
Full Combat (Paul Hanagan); Journeyman (Soumillon)
“Two colts well-performed in South Africa. Both are well short of their best and will need further.”
R6 DDF Finest Surprise Handicap:
“Again, a nice SAF horse who’s had to travel and is underdone for this race, but we believe he is better than his rating and he’s doing very well, he has a chance here.”
Those who have had previous runs in Dubai:
R1. DDF Tennis Championships Handicap, 2200m, all-weather track:
“He was way out of his ground in his race over 1400m last week, took off very late and will be better suited to this trip. He needs another run to come to his best, however.
R4. DDF Golf World Cup, 2000m, Turf:
Star Empire (Soumillon):
“The old warrior returns for another season. We have a 2800m race planned for him about two weeks away and he will need this run after his break, but he is expected to run well. This looks like quite a competitive field.”
R5. Dubawi Stakes, 1200m on all-weather track:
“Probably my best runner on the night. He disliked the soft underfoot conditions in the UK but had some competitive racing there so comes into the race at a decent level of fitness and likes the all-weather track. A good run expected.”
A note for all Mike’s comments: Readers please keep in mind that Mike gives his opinion on the condition of horses in his care as they are at the time of the race – he knows when they are not fully wound up and will state this as such when needed. However, it’s not always possible to determine the well-being and the quality of runners from other stables, or to compare ability of his runners with others on form lines from different racing jurisdictions. Mike’s is not a tipping service, merely a guide. The best advice is to keep track of his observations as the stable’s runners make progress week by week – and then to assess form on your own before making your selections.
Kavanagh on the work track at Meydan. (Jessica Slack)