Brraq won in determined fashion the Group 1
Racing at Meydan on Thursday evening, January 7, the first UAE fixture of 2021, was highlighted by the only Purebred Arabian race on the card, the opening 1600m Group 1 Al Maktoum Challenge R1 presented by Longines and won in determined fashion by Yas Racing's Brraq.
Brraq gave trainer Jean-Claude Pecout his first significant local victory as a trainer. Ridden patiently by Adrie de Vries, the son of Mahabb won for the third time in nine starts.
An eye-catching performance saw finish second, three-quarters of a length back and 3 1/2 lengths clear of race favourite AF Alwajel. The final time for the 1600m was 1:47.07.
Settled in midfield by Adrie de Vries, the 8-year-old entire made smooth progress to chase the leaders leaving the home turn before swooping down the outside to grab the initiative about 250m out. He would stay on strongly to deny the challenge of Fettah Du Loup. Homebred by Yas Racing, Brraq was providing a dream first UAE winner, after 13 previous attempts, for Frenchman Jean-Claude Pecout who trains on the racecourse at Al Ain.
Pecout said: “To have my first winner in a Group One is amazing and a lot of credit to Jean de Roualle who trained him before and told me this is a very good horse. As we all know, Jean is a very good judge and has, as so often, been proved correct.”
Previous trainer De Roualle was on hand to support and represent owner HH Sheikh Mansoor bin Zayed Al Nahyan, adding: "He's not an easy horse to train and Jean-Claude did a marvelous job. To be honest with you, he decided to run at Meydan and obviously I would not have done it--so congratulations to him."
Source: Emirates Racing Authority with inputs of Cidinha Franzão. Photo: Dubai Racing Club
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