Viva Vivlos And Moreira In The Dubai Turf

Jockey Joao Moreira left Meydan spellbound by his magic touch as he conjured a dashing late run from the Japanese filly Vivlos (JPN) to capture the Dubai Turf sponsored by DP World.

Quietly ridden for most of the race by the brilliant Brazilian, Vivlos cut down the French-trained Heshem (IRE), who looked likely to pull off a shock result at the 200m, inside the final strides of US$6 million showpiece to win by half a length. An identical margin behind finished Ribchester (IRE) in third having raced prominently throughout.

Japan was making it three wins in the last four renewals of the race following successes by Just A Way (JPN) in 2014 and Real Steel (JPN) last year. The latter was scratched earlier in the week from defending his crown. Interestingly, all three runners had prepared for the Dubai Turf by competing in the Grade 2 Nakayama Kinen in Tokyo.

Hong Kong’s champion jockey Moreira, enjoying the third win of his career on the world’s richest race meeting, was overjoyed with the performance by Vivlos.

"She was brilliant,” he enthused. “From the time that I sat on top of her on Friday, she gave me the feel that she was going to be very competitive. She was probably one of the lightest horses in the race. If the ground was soft, which is probably what the people were thinking about, she wasn't sinking (into the turf) the most. I think that is why she was able to let down and was able to get there.

“Good horses make a jockey's life easier. She made the job very easy for me today. We were travelling nice and when I took her out and she had daylight, she was strong to the line.”

Trainer Yasuo Tomomichi, who was saddling his first runner at the meeting, added: "She travelled very well from Japan and she was very relaxed in Dubai. She relaxed again in the back of the field and quickened very well. It kept raining but the ground wasn’t too soft, which suited her.”

Jockey of the runner-up Heshem, Gregory Benoist, said: “For half of the home straight I thought I was going to win easily but the rain has affected the ground and that doesn’t suit him. If it had been good ground we would have won but for him that is still a career best finishing second.”

Race favourite Zarak (FR) appeared to have every chance under treble-chasing Christophe Soumillon but he could only finish fourth.

Quotes for Group 1 US$6m Dubai Turf Sponsored by DP World

Joao Moreira (jockey, Vivlos (JPN) 1st): “She was brilliant. From the time that I sat on top of her on Friday, she gave me the feel that she was going to be very competitive. She was probably one of the lightest horses in the race. If the ground was soft, which is probably what the people were thinking about, she wasn't sinking in the most. I think that is why she was able to let down and was able to get there. Good horses make a jockey's life easier. She made the job very easy for me today. We were travelling nice and when I took her out and she had daylight, she was strong to the line. And got it done. So thank you to the connections, owner, trainer and all those who got me on top of her today."

Yasue Tomomichi (trainer): "She travelled very well from Japan, when she got to Dubai she was very relaxed, she was relaxed today. There was a time when she got a position in the back of the field, when it started moving forward it was going well."

Gregory Benoist (jockey, Heshem (IRE) 2nd) – “For half of the home straight I thought I was going to win easily but the rain has affected the ground and that doesn’t suit him. If it had been good ground we would have won but for him that is still a career best finishing second.”

William Buick (jockey, Ribchester (IRE) 3rd) – “On that run you can’t say that he didn’t stay the distance. You’d have to be pleased with him as he will improve for this and it opens a few more doors.”

Christophe Soumillon (jockey, Zarak (FR) 4th) – “He checked at one point and he didn't accelerate like he did last time. I don't think the ground was an excuse. He handled that type of ground before. I was disappointed because I thought he would give me a better turn of foot.”

Jim Crowley (jockey, Mutakayyef (GB) 5th) – “He was a little bit fresh early on. He hadn't run for a while. He ran a good race and is a good horse, but unfortunately he needs fast ground.”

Andrea Atzeni (jockey, Decorated Knight (GB) 6th) – “He’s run a good race but it was slow ground. He can usually show a turn of foot but couldn’t use himself today and didn’t pick up. He’s a better horse on better ground.”

Ryan Moore (jockey, Deauville (IRE) 7th) – “The ground was a bit too soft for him.”

Donnacha O'Brien (jockey, Cougar Mountain (IRE) 8th) – “He ran well. I was following the winner and thought she was going nowhere, so I switched out. I should have stayed following her.”

Michael Rodd (jockey, Debt Collector (NZ) 9th) – “I had to keep kind of niggling at him, he let himself down super but he’s just not quite up to those guys.”

Silvestre De Sousa, (jockey Very Special (IRE) 10th) – “It was good and we travelled well. She just got beat by her own class.”

Danny Tudhope (jockey, Mondialiste (IRE) 11th) – “We were too keen again today. We tried to ride him on the positives but it doesn't work. There will be another day for him. It’s not the right time.”

Seamie Heffernan (jockey, Long Island Sound (USA) 12th) - “He couldn’t beat the wide draw on ground that’s not ideal for him.”
Oisin Murphy (jockey, Opal Tiara (IRE) 13th) – “She’s a very tough filly and the trainer has done really well with her. Who knows where she can take us in