Charges from the Mike de Kock stable and US star Life Is Good are among 750 horses from 20 different countries who have been nominated for the 26th Dubai World Cup meeting, on 26 March 2022.
With nine races, including six Gr1’s, on the card and $30.5 million in total prizemoney, the Dubai World Cup meeting promises to be a spectacular day of racing, culminating in the 26th Gr1 Emirates Airline Dubai World Cup.
Sheikh Rashid bin Dalmook Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Racing Club, said: “To have more than 750 horses from 20 different countries nominated shows the continued strength of the Dubai World Cup meeting, which has grown each year since its inception in 1996. This achievement has been made possible by the vision and guidance of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, who is the world’s most influential supporter of this sport. We are delighted to have so many Group and Grade 1 winners nominated, including established stars such as Life Is Good and Hot Rod Charlie, and we thank the horse connections for their support and their trust in Dubai. We look forward to welcoming connections and fans to the 26th Dubai World Cup and we aim to deliver a spectacular night.”
Run over 2000m on dirt, the Gr1 Emirates Airline Dubai World Cup has attracted 153 nominations, including 23 individual Group/Grade 1 winners. Among them is Gr1 Pegasus World Cup winner Life Is Good for trainer Todd Pletcher, who has also nominated Happy Saver and Dr Post, and Doug O’Neill’s Hot Rod Charlie, already a winner at Meydan Racecourse in the G2 Maktoum Challenge Round 2.
A strong bunch of nominations from the USA also includes Art Collector, trained by Bill Mott, and 2019 Gr1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile winner Storm The Court, for trainer Peter Eurton.
There will also be a strong home defense, with Godolphin Gr2 winner Real World nominated by nine-time World Cup winner Saeed bin Suroor, and Gr1 winner Salute The Soldier by Bahraini handler Fawzi Nass.
Japan, who won the Dubai World Cup in 2011 with Victoire Pisa, are also set to be well-represented, with 2021 runner-up Chuwa Wizard among their nominations, as well as Gr1 winner Café Pharoah.
The $6million Gr1 Dubai Sheema Classic, sponsored by Longines, has attracted a strong list of top-class turf horses, with 11 Group 1 winners nominated. They include G1 Coronation Cup winner Pyledriver, trainer in the UK by William Muir, as well as Japan’s Glory Vase, dual winner of the Longines Hong Kong Vase.
The $5million Gr1 DP World Dubai Turf has attracted 22 Gr1 winners among 210 entries, including defending champion Lord North, trained in the UK by John Gosden, and 2021 Gr1 Emirates Airline Jebel Hatta winner Lord Glitters. The USA could be represented by dual G1 Pegasus World Cup Turf winner Colonel Liam, trained by Pletcher, while a strong Godolphin challenge includes Charlie Appleby’s popular Barney Roy.
US Gr1 winner Ce Ce, trained by Michael McCarthy, is among 161 nominations for the G1 Dubai Golden Shaheen, over 1200 metres on dirt, while Saffie Joseph Jnr has put forward Gr1 Woody Stephens winner Drain The Clock and Mark Glatt has nominated G1 Breeders’ Cup Sprint second Dr. Schivel.
The Gr1 Al Quoz Sprint, over 1200 metres on turf, has 170 entries, including defending champion Extravagant Kid, trained by Brendan Walsh, and G1 Haydock Sprint Cup winner Emaraaty Ana, trained in the UK by Kevin Ryan.
There are three Gr2’s on the card, including the UAE Derby which has attracted 141 entries. Among them is Grade 1 winner Albahr, for Appleby, while US Hall Of Fame trainer Bob Baffert has nominated the exciting Pinehurst.
Baffert could also be represented in the G2 Godolphin Mile, in which he has nominated G1 winner Eight Rings, while defending champion Secret Ambition could bid for a repeat for first season UAE trainer Bhupat Seemar.
The 3200m Gr2 Dubai Gold Cup, on turf, which is a popular race with fans, has attracted exciting nominations from Europe in particular. They include Dermot Weld’s dual G1 Irish St Leger winner Search For A Song, as well as Johnny Murtagh’s Sonnyboyliston, winner of the same race in 2021.
The Purebred Arabians also get their chance to shine in the $1million Dubai Kahayla Classic, the traditional curtain raiser to the day. It has 70 entries, including 2021 winner Deryan and second AF Alwajel, representing three-time UAE Champion Owner Khalid Khalifa Al Nabooda.