The Ninth Race Meeting at the Dubai World Cup Carnival at was highlighted by the Group 3 UAE Oaks. Doug Watson trained Rayya won the Oaks under jockey Pat Dobbs. The prize on this race was US$250,000. Rayya got her revenge on race favourite Winter Lightning who defeated her in the Listed UAE 1000 Guineas and UAE 1000 Guineas Trial.
“She was a lot more relaxed today than last time when we never really knew what upset her,” Dobbs said. “Halfway down the back straight I knew she was going to be very hard to beat. The one-draw is a big help and I was not going to waste it. We knew she would stay, so I was always going to be positive, but you have to compliment Doug and his team for getting her back to her best.”
“She was just not herself in the Guineas, but was much better tonight and always looked happy,” Watson said. “I imagine we will have to look at the UAE Derby now but will enjoy this first.”
Another race The Meydan Classic, a 1600m race on turf was won by Godolphin’s Zaman. He was ridden by William Buick and trained by Charlie Appleby
“We went a nice gallop, so I was always pretty confident a gap would appear and it did when we wanted it,” Buick said. “He broke well today. From a good draw, I was happy to settle him in behind the leaders on the rail and wait for the split. He ran well in the Trial and has improved a lot from that outing and over the extra furlong today. He has produced a nice turn-of-foot and is a nice, young horse.”
T P O'Shea ridden Waqqad came in second and D Marnane trained Freescape came in third in this race.
After losing in Meydan Classic Appleby got his win in the Al Naboodah National Plant Trophy with Top Score. The Grape Escape came in second under P J Dobbs and Oh This Is Us trained by R Hannon came in third.
“That was very impressive and I was mindful that I did not want to give him too hard a race,” Buick said. “He has not had that much racing and is a horse we have always really liked. The extra distance in the Dubai Gold Cup should suit him and he must go there with a big chance.”
The only PA race, the Group 1 Al Maktoum Challenge R3 was run over 2000m on dirt. A resolute Ziyadd won the race under Richard Mullen. He denied the win to A Al Rayhi trained Barnamaj who came in second and P J Dobbs ridden Paddy's Day who came in third.
“We were pretty confident that he had a big chance tonight because he has been training very well on the dirt in Al Ain,” Mullen said. “It is only his third start for us after two good efforts at Abu Dhabi on the turf. He certainly needed his first one and then he ran well in HH The President Cup when second. His dam won the Kahayla Classic, as did his brother, so we had to be hopeful the dirt would suit, but you never really know until you try them in a race. It has really suited him and, all being well, he is an exciting prospect with the Kahayla Classic the obvious option.”