30 March 2022

Winners of first two rounds clash again in concluding heat of Arabian Triple Crown at final Abu Dhabi fixture of season

The penultimate fixture of the UAE season and final one in Abu Dhabi, Thursday’s card is highlighted by the Group 3 Arabian Triple Crown R3, the third and final round of the series for 4yos and over 2400m.

Victorious in the 2200m Group 3 Arabian Triple Crown R2, Izadi Star was making a winning local debut, shedding his maiden tag at the fourth attempt in the process, chased home by stable companion Kalifano De Ghazal who is again

Both are trained by Helal Alalawi for the National Stables from which the handler trains in Al Ain.

Third on that occasion and one of two chances in the race for trainer Ibrahim Al Hadhrami, Sattam Muscat was previously third behind stablemate Bahar Muscat in the opening round, the second time he had been beaten by that stable companion.

He seemed to stay the 2200m well and may be suited by the extra 200m on Thursday.

Having won the Listed 1600m opening round, a fourth consecutive victory and third over that course and distance, Al Hadhrami’s second runner, the previously undefeated Bahar Muscat, could manage only fourth in the 2200m Group Three middle round behind Izadi Star, Kalifano De Ghazal and stablemate Sattam Muscat.

He had looked very good winning his previous starts but needs to prove his stamina beyond 1600m.

Golden Years, trained by Abdallah Al Hammadi, was staying on, albeit far too late, over the 2200m of the middle round. She is one of two fillies in the race.

The second filly is Sultana, a 2200m course maiden winner on her penultimate start. To be saddled by Mohamed Daggash for Athbah Racing, she was most recently a close third in the Arabian Derby, also over 2200m here in the capital.

Runner-up on that occasion, AF Mualami is another to consider for Abubakar Daud with Champion Jockey Tadhg O’Shea booked to take the ride.

The only Thoroughbred contest and final race on the card is a good 1400m handicap and the race to bring down the curtain on the Abu Dhabi season

The weights are headed by Perfect Love, trained from Antonio Cintra Pereira’s satellite yard at Meydan’s Green Stables.

He never threatened in a similar race a fortnight ago but does have a 1300m turf success in Listed company to his name in South America.

For Bhupat Seemar, looking increasingly likely to finish his maiden season with a licence as Champion Trainer, Koolasice, Ranchero and Zero To A Hundred were second, fourth and sixth respectively in that course and distance handicap.

They will be joined in this field by stable companions Bochart, Rodaini and Irish Freedom, seemingly giving the trainer a very strong hand. O’Shea has opted to ride Ranchero.

As with most such Abu Dhabi Thoroughbred handicaps, it appears a wide open contest with a case to be made for the vast majority of the field, including the Shadwell duo of Bawaasil and Taamol, to be saddled by Erwan Charpy and Doug Watson respectively, as well as Rashed Bouresly’s Hawa Bilady.

Among the relatively unknown contenders, local debutant Thaler is due to sport the silks of his trainer, South African Mike de Kock, having been purchased for 65,000gns at Tattersalls in October.

He won once, from six starts, for Sir Michael Stoute and his breeders, Juddmonte in Britain and it would be no surprise to see him run well under Jose Santiago.