Dubai World Cup – Preview, Predictions & Fields

Bet on Horses today at MyBookie!

 

The Dubai World Cup has attracted a field of 10 that will do battle in the Group 1, $10,000,000 Race at Meydan Racecourse on Saturday. Dubai World Cup Day is one of the most special events of the year on the international racing calendar, with nine massive stakes races to be contested. The event is a celebration of racing and is truly a unique experience, with one of the richest races in the world run underneath the lights in the desert. Last year’s edition provided racing fans with one of the greatest single race performances of all time, and this year’s field looks to be entertaining, as well.

Leading the American charge will be the Bob Baffert-trained duo of West Coast and Mubtaahij. West Coast is coming off of a very solid second-place effort in the Grade 1 Pegasus World Cup, while Mubtaahij has enjoyed plenty of success over this track in the past three years. Last year, Baffert captured the Dubai World Cup with Arrogate, but he seems to be a bit more at ease about his chances this year.

“Everything this year is so smooth,” he said. “The vibe is good. I felt so much pressure last year. Competing on the world stage is really exciting, but they have to break well, and they have to fight for it and earn it. You have to know your horse really well. Arrogate got light last year, but these horses are holding their weight. I don’t want to jinx myself, but I feel confident.”

An American filly has been grabbing some of the headlines from the Baffert duo. Forever Unbridled is coming off of a perfect 2017 season in which she captured the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Distaff and Older Female Horse of the Year honors. The Dallas Stewart trainee will run the final race of her career on Saturday before being bred to top stallion Medaglia d’Oro. After she galloped the track on Monday, Stewart kept his thoughts short and simple.

“She’s doing fantastic,” he said. “She had an awesome morning.”

A European entry familiar to many American fans is Thunder Snow, who famously “freaked out” in the 2017 Kentucky Derby: shortly after the gates opened, he began bucking like a bronco and had to be pulled up before even passing the grandstand for the first time. Since that disaster, though, he’s run quite well, including winning over this surface two races back, and seems to be doing well coming into the race.

“He looks very well indeed and we are very happy with him,” said trainer Saeed bin Suroor. “Physically, he is as good as we have had him, and he has come through all three rounds of the Al Maktoum Challenge, winning the middle one and finishing second in the other two. The third round, on Super Saturday, was run at a very fast pace, which could well happen again (in the Dubai World Cup).”

The full field for the 2018 Dubai World Cup is as follows from the rail out:

Awardee, North America, Gunnevera, Furia Cruzada, Mubtaahij, Forever Unbridled, Talismanic, Pavel, West Coast, and Thunder Snow.

THE WINNER

#9 West Coast $1.85 – Simply put, if West Coast can bring his Pegasus World Cup effort to Dubai, then he should win this race fairly easily. He was competitive in the Pegasus with the eventual winner, Gun Runner, who at that time was the best dirt horse in the world. Gun Runner would be odds-on against this field if he were still running, so West Coast becomes the very logical choice now. The only question mark? What will be his energy level after he ran so well at Gulfstream Park, only to not gain any ground on Gun Runner? If he’s bounced out of that race in good order, then he should excel here, and Baffert seems very optimistic about his chances. West Coast could stamp himself as the number-one horse in America if he can pick up this win under the lights in Dubai.

NEXT BEST

#2 North America $7 – Five-for-eight lifetime over the Meydan course, he set a track record last time out when winning round three of the Al Maktoum Challenge by more than 5 lengths over rival Thunder Snow. Last year, North America tried his hand at the Godolphin Mile, only to disappoint because he didn’t care for the sloppy surface that night. This race seems to suit him better from a distance standpoint, and based on the forecast, the track should be fast. He has progressively improved in each of his starts leading up to this race and could be sitting on a big one here. He looks like the main threat to the sure-to-be-heavily-favored West Coast.

#10 Thunder Snow  $18 – He can put the disaster that was his Kentucky Derby fully behind him with a win in this race, and he should have a decent shot of making that happen. He’s gained valuable experience at this track over his last three starts, although I would’ve liked to see him win his most recent one. Still, you know that the class is there; he has literally raced all over the world, and bin Suroor has won this race seven times, so you can count on him to have this horse in top shape heading into the big event.

EXOTIC PLAYS

#7 Talismanic $10 – Who knows what will happen with this world-class horse trying the dirt for the time here. If he takes to the surface, then he can obviously be a player, but there are no guarantees. His price should probably influence how you play him. At a short or mid-range price, he’s not worth a play, but if his odds float up to double digits, then he wouldn’t be a bad horse to throw on some tickets. It will be fun to see if he can make a successful transition to the dirt.

#6 Forever Unbridled $9 – She’ll be the sentimental choice as the only filly in the race, and she’s coming into this event sharp. The question is whether she can compete against the boys; from a speed figure standpoint, she looks to be a small notch below. However, she passed the eye test in her last two races; her move in the Breeders’ Cup Distaff was tremendous, and if she can do that again here, then she has a shot.

#3 Gunnevera $13 – He’s the ultimate hit-the-board play in pretty much every race that he enters. This horse shows up for every big race, including last time out in the Pegasus, where he finished third. There’s no doubt what he’s going to do each race: take back early, then make one giant run in the end. This track can sometimes be unkind to closers, but if the pace is hot up front, then he should be able to pick off tired horses and hit the board.

LONG SHOTS

#5 Mubtaahij $21 – Baffert described him as “getting a little long in the tooth” when referring to his age, but this horse is no stranger to success at Meydan. He won the Group 1 UAE Derby in 2015 on his way to the Kentucky Derby, then returned in 2016 to finish second in the Dubai World Cup. He also came to Dubai for the World Cup last year, finishing fourth behind two world-class horses in Arrogate and Gun Runner. He enters this year’s edition off of a second-place effort in the Grade 1 Santa Anita Handicap. It’s not like he’s been setting the world on fire with his recent races, but if he can muster up some of that Meydan magic, he could at least hit the board at what should be a huge price.

NO CHANCE

#8 Pavel $15 – His connections passed up a logical spot in the Santa Anita Handicap, instead aiming for this race. He probably would’ve been one of the favorites in the Big ‘Cap, but this race is a bit over his head. It seems like he’s been spotted over his head for much of his career, but has reportedly looked great since showing up in Dubai.

#4 Furia Cruzada $126 – The other mare in this field, she hasn’t won in a while and was recently defeated by North America and Thunder Snow in her last few races. She will have to show considerable improvement to get the job done here.

#1 Awardee $67 – This horse has struggled in his last few starts, and that will be hard to change in a race of this caliber. He seems overmatched no matter how you look at it.

COMPLETE RACE TO RACE FIELDS

RACE 1

GODOLPHIN MILE SPONSORED BY MOHAMMED BIN RASHID AL MAKTOUM CITY – DISTRICT ONE

Group 1, $1,000,000 Godolphin Mile

Post Horse Owner Trainer Jockey Morning Line Odds
1 Capezzano (USA) Sultan Ali S. Jadhav Mike Smith 20-1
2 Second Summer (USA) Sh Rashid bin Humaid Al Nuaimi D. Watson Sam Hitchcott 15-1
3 Muntazah (GB) Sh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum D. Watson Jim Crowley 20-1
4 Musawaat (GB) Maher E Lutfalla F. Nass Adrie De Vries 15-1
5 Adirato (JPN) Koji Yasuhara N. Sugai Christophe Lemaire 15-1
6 Special Fighter (IRE) Sh Mansoor bin Mohd Al Maktoum M. Al Mheiri Fernando Jara 15-1
7 Shamaal Nibras (USA) EERC D. Watson Dane O’Neill 30-1
8 Economic Model (USA) Sh Ahmed bin Rashid Al Maktoum C. Brown Joel Rosario 7-2
9 Heavy Metal (GB) Sh Hamdan bin Mohd Al Maktoum S. Jadhav Ryan Moore 2-1
10 Secret Ambition (GB) Nasir Askar S. Seemar Patrick Cosgrave 20-1
11 Akito Crescent (JPN) Akitoshi Okada H. Shimizu Yutaka Take 30-1
12 Kimbear (USA) Sh Rashid bin Humaid Al Nuaim D. Watson Patrick Dobbs 4-1
13 Rosa Imperial (IRE) Godolphin A. Fabre Mickael Barzalona 12-1
14 Raven’s Corner (IRE) Touch Gold Racing & Sean Ewing S. Seemar Richard Mullen 15-1

RACE 2

DUBAI KAHAYLA CLASSIC SPONSORED BY MUBADALA

Group 1, $1,000,000 Dubai Kahayla Classic

Post Horse Owner Trainer Jockey Morning Line Odds
1 Mawahib (FR) H H Sh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan E. Lemartinel Gerald Avranche 6-1
2 Bandar (FR) Yas Horse Racing Management F. Sanchez Ioritz Mendizabal 10-1
3 Chaddad (GB) Aaisha Yousuf Mohd Al Balushi S. Al Hajri Oisin Murphy 6-1
4 Barnamaj (FR) Sh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum A. Al Rayhi Jim Crowley 4-1
5 Darius Du Paon (FR) H H Sh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan E. Lemartinel Adrie De Vries 30-1
6 Al Zahir (FR) Sh Mansoor bin Mohd Al Maktoum A. Al Rayhi Dane O’Neill 6-1
7 Af Al Sajanjle (AE) Khalid Khalifa Al Nabooda E. Oertel Sam Hitchcott 20-1
8 Ziyadd (FR) Yas Horse Racing Management J. de Roualle Richard Mullen 10-1
9 Nafees (FR) Royal Cavalry Oman C. Gourdain Olivier Peslier 10-1
10 Tallaab Al Khalediah (SAF) HRHP Khalid bin Sultan bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud M. bin Mashref Roberto Perez 20-1
11 Cakouet De Bozouls (FR) HE Abdulla Bakheet Saif Murshed Al Marar A. Al Mehairbi Silvestre De Sousa 10-1
12 Cheik Roque (FR) EERC & Ben Watson E. Charpy Antonio Fresu 20-1
13 Paddy’s Day (USA) Quarter Moon Ranch D. Watson Patrick Dobbs 12-1
14 Sniper De Monlau (FR) Byerley Team H. Al Alawi Patrick Cosgrave 20-1
15 Af Marrah (AE) Khalid Khalifa Al Nabooda E. Oertel Harry Bentley 12-1

RACE 3

DUBAI GOLD CUP SPONSORED BY AL TAYER MOTORS

Group 2, $1,000,000 Dubai Gold Cup

Post Horse Owner Trainer Jockey Morning Line Odds
1 Dal Harraild (GB) St. Albans Bloodstock W. Haggas Ryan Moore 7-1
2 Run Time (USA) Bloom Racing Stable & Allen Racing M. Maker Joel Rosario 30-1
3 Los Barbados (IRE) EERC & Fawzi Nass F. Nass Adrie De Vries 50-1
4 Parviz (IRE) Darius Racing W. Hickst Marc Lerner 30-1
5 Vazirabad (FR) HH Aga Khan A. De Royer-Dupre Christophe Soumillon 2-1
6 Janszoon (GB) Sh Rashid bin Humaid Al Nuaimi A. Al Rayhi Silvestre De Sousa 60-1
7 Sheikhzayedroad (GB) Mohd Jaber Abdulla D. Simcock Martin Harley 20-1
8 Prince Of Arran (GB) Saeed Bel Obaida C. Fellowes Oisin Murphy 50-1
9 Red Galileo (GB) Godolphin S. bin Suroor Gerald Mosse 50-1
10 Frontiersman (GB) Godolphin C. Appleby James Doyle 10-1
11 Al Sahem (SAF) Sh Mohd bin Khalifa Al Maktoum M. de Kock Anthony Delpech 20-1
12 Big Orange (GB) W J & T C O Gredley M. Bell Frankie Dettori 5-1
13 Natural Scenery (GB) Godolphin S. bin Suroor Patrick Cosgrave 30-1
14 Rare Rhythm (GB) Godolphin C. Appleby William Buick 5-2
15 Torcedor (IRE) Te Akau Torcedor J. Harrington Colm O’Donoghue 12-1
16 Gold Star (GB) Godolphin S. bin Suroor Jim Crowley 20-1

RACE 4

UAE DERBY SPONSORED BY SAEED & MOHAMMED AL NABOODAH GROUP

Group 2, $2,000,000 UAE Derby

Post Horse Owner Trainer Jockey Morning Line Odds
1 Rayya (USA) Sh Rashid bin Humaid Al Nuaimi D. Watson Patrick Dobbs 10-1
2 Ruggero (JPN) Takashi Muraki Y. Shikato Christophe Lemaire 30-1
3 Reride (USA) Winchell Thoroughbreds S. Asmussen Javier Castellano 12-1
4 Mendelssohn (USA) D. Smith, Mrs. J. Magnier, & M. Tabor A. O’Brien Ryan Moore 5-2
5 Gold Town (GB) Godolphin C. Appleby William Buick 6-5
6 Seahenge (USA) M. Tabor, D. Smith, & Mrs. J. Magnier A. O’Brien Donnacha O’Brien 15-1
7 Yulong Warrior (USA) Yu Long S. Seemar Richard Mullen 15-1
8 Taiki Ferveur (JPN) U Taiki Farm M. Makiura Joao Moreira 20-1
9 Threeandfourpence (USA) Mrs. E. M. Stockwell A. O’Brien Seamie Heffernan 10-1

RACE 5

AL QUOZ SPRINT SPONSORED BY AZIZI DEVELOPMENTS

Group 1, $1,000,000 Al Quoz Sprint

Post Horse Owner Trainer Jockey Morning Line Odds
1 Faatinah (AUS) Sh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum D. Hayes Dane O’Neill 30-1
2 Washington DC (IRE) Mrs. J. Magnier, M. Tabor, & D. Smith A. O’Brien Ryan Moore 15-1
3 Librisa Breeze (GB) Tony Blom D. Ivory Robert Winston 8-1
4 Illustrious Lad (AUS) Anthony Panozzo P. Gelagotis Anthony Darmanin 30-1
5 Stormy Liberal (USA) Rockingham Ranch & David A. Bernsen P. Miller Joel Rosario 20-1
6 Holding Gold (USA) Live Oak Plantation M. Casse Javier Castellano 30-1
7 Richard’s Boy (USA) Rockingham Ranch P. Miller Kent Desormeaux 20-1
8 Baccarat (IRE) Godolphin C. Appleby Mickael Barzalona 15-1
9 Conquest Tsunami (CAN) Gary Barber P. Miller Victor Espinoza 15-1
10 Jungle Cat (IRE) Godolphin C. Appleby James Doyle 9-2
11 Magical Memory (IRE) Kennet Valley Thoroughbreds I C. Hills Frankie Dettori 20-1
12 Music Magnate (NZ) Bjorn Baker Racing B. Baker Blake Shinn 15-1
13 Blue Point (IRE) Godolphin C. Appleby William Buick 4-5
14 Hit The Bid (GB) Straight To Victory Syndicate D. Bunyan Leigh Roche 30-1

RACE 6

DUBAI GOLDEN SHAHEEN SPONSORED BY GULF NEWS

Group 1, $2,000,000 Golden Shaheen

Post Horse Owner Trainer Jockey Morning Line Odds
1 Mind Your Biscuits (USA) J. Stables, Head Of Plains Partners, C. Summers C. Summers Joel Rosario 4-1
2 X Y Jet (USA) Rockingham Ranch & Gelfenstein Farm J. Navarro Emisael Jaramillo 5-2
3 Reynaldothewizard (USA) Zabeel Racing International S. Seemar Richard Mullen 30-1
4 Wild Dude (USA) Yu Long & Team Cheval A. bin Harmash Silvestre De Sousa 60-1
5 Matera Sky (USA) Tsuyoshi Ono H. Mori Yutaka Take 50-1
6 Roy H (USA) Rockingham Ranch & David A. Bernsen P. Miller Kent Desormeaux 4-5
7 Shillong (GB) Byerley Team H. Al Alawi Patrick Cosgrave 60-1
8 My Catch (IRE) Valentin Bukhtoyarov & Evgeny Kappushev D. Watson Patrick Dobbs 30-1
9 Jordan Sport (GB) Victorious F. Nass Adrie De Vries 12-1

RACE 7

DUBAI TURF SPONSORED BY DP WORLD

Group 1, $6,000,000 Dubai Turf

Post Horse Owner Trainer Jockey Morning Line Odds
1 Championship (IRE) Sh Mansoor bin Mohd Al Maktoum A. bin Harmash Silvestre De Sousa 15-1
2 Neorealism (JPN) U Carrot Farm N. Hori Joao Moreira 6-1
3 Promising Run (USA) Godolphin S. bin Suroor Patrick Cosgrave 30-1
4 Trais Fluors (GB) SCEA Haras De Saint Pair A. Fabre Vincent Cheminaud 10-1
5 Benbatl (GB) Godolphin S. bin Suroor Oisin Murphy 7-2
6 Janoobi (SAF) Sh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum M. de Kock Jim Crowley 20-1
7 Vivlos (JPN) Kazuhiro Sasaki Y. Tomomichi Cristian Demuro 6-1
8 Real Steel (JPN) Sunday Racing Co Y. Yahagi Mickael Barzalona 10-1
9 Monarchs Glen (GB) K. Abdullah J. Gosden Frankie Dettori 12-1
10 War Decree (USA) A. Rosen, Mrs. J. Magnier, M. Tabor, & D. Smith A. O’Brien Seamie Heffernan 12-1
11 Crocosmia (JPN) Ryoichi Otsuka K. Nishiura Yasunari Iwata 15-1
12 Lancaster Bomber (USA) M. Tabor, D. Smith, & Mrs. J. Magnier A. O’Brien Ryan Moore 7-1
13 Deirdre (JPN) T. Morita M. Hashida Christophe Lemaire 20-1
14 Leshlaa (USA) Godolphin S. bin Suroor Christophe Soumillon 20-1
15 Blair House (IRE) Godolphin C. Appleby William Buick 12-1

RACE 8

LONGINES DUBAI SHEEMA CLASSIC

Group 1, $6,000,000 Dubai Sheema Classic

Post Horse Owner Trainer Jockey Morning Line Odds
1 Mozu Katchan (JPN) Capital System Co I. Sameshima Cristian Demuro 12-1
2 Idaho (IRE) M. Tabor, D. Smith, & Mrs. J. Magnier A. O’Brien Ryan Moore 10-1
3 Rey De Oro (JPN) U Carrot Farm K. Fujisawa Christophe Lemaire 4-1
4 Khalidi (GB) Nizar Anwar C. Cox Silvestre De Sousa 15-1
5 Poet’s Word (IRE) Saeed Suhail Sir M. Stoute Frankie Dettori 9-2
6 Cloth Of Stars (IRE) Godolphin A. Fabre Mickael Barzalona 2-1
7 Hawkbill (USA) Godolphin C. Appleby William Buick 8-1
8 Satono Crown (JPN) Satomi Horse Company N. Hori Joao Moreira 8-1
9 Desert Encounter (IRE) Abdulla Al Mansoori D. Simcock Sean Levey 20-1
10 Best Solution (IRE) Godolphin S. bin Suroor Patrick Cosgrave 20-1

RACE 9

DUBAI WORLD CUP SPONSORED BY EMIRATES AIRLINE

Group 1, $10,000,000 Dubai World Cup

Post Horse Owner Trainer Jockey Morning Line Odds
1 Awardee (USA) Koji Maeda M. Matsunaga Yutaka Take 50-1
2 North America (GB) Ramzan Kadyrov S. Seemar Richard Mullen 8-1
3 Gunnevera (USA) Salomon Del Valle A. Sano Joel Rosario 10-1
4 Furia Cruzada (CHI) Avaz Ismoilov E. Charpy Antonio Fresu 60-1
5 Mubtaahij (IRE) Sh. Mohd bin Khalifa Al Maktoum B. Baffert Victor Espinoza 15-1
6 Forever Unbridled (USA) Charles E. Fipke D. Stewart Mike Smith 8-1
7 Talismanic (GB) Godolphin A. Fabre Mickael Barzalona 7-1
8 Pavel (USA) Reddam Racing D. O’Neill Mario Gutierrez 15-1
9 West Coast (USA) Gary & Mary West B. Baffert Javier Castellano 4-5
10 Thunder Snow (IRE) Godolphin S. bin Suroor Christophe Soumillon 10-1

 

Total
1
Shares

Subscribe

Subscribe now to our newsletter