Local trainer Alalawi dominates Al Ain feature with a 1-2 and completes double in finale
Racing at Al Ain on Saturday was highlighted by a 2000m conditions race which turned out to be a memorable occasion for trainer Helal Alalawi who saddles the 1-2, apprentice Gary Sanchez landing the spoils aboard Itchy De Nacre (Al Mamun Monlau x Nacre Du Croate by Dormane).
Running in the silks of the National Stables from where Alalawi trains nearby, the 4yo colt was chased home by stable companion and the same owner’s Kalifano De Ghazal.
A winner once previously in France, over 2000m on turf, from five European starts, this was just his third appearance for current connections and his dirt debut.
The finale and only Thoroughbred race on the card was a 2600m handicap and Al Alawi completed a double on the card, this time in partnership with Omani Abdul Aziz Al Balushi who always looked confident in the saddle of Arabian Moon (Al Kazeem x Midnight Dance by Danehill Dancer), also owned by the National Stables.
A 5yo gelded son of Al Kazeem, it was a second career success for the horse whose previous victory was also over this 2600m track and trip last February.
The fixture commenced with a 2000m maiden for horses for horses foaled in the UAE and won by Dahshaan (TM Junior Johnson x Alyasat by Madjani), ridden by Omani apprentice Saif Al Balushi in the colours of Ali Ebraheem Buhendi Abdulla Al Hosani for trainer Khalifa Al Neyadi who also saddled the runner-up, Farrar.
The 5yo gelding was losing his maiden tag at the tenth attempt having never previously finished in the first three although he was a close fourth on his previous start in a 2200m maiden on the Abu Dhabi turf as recently as Monday.
Settled in rear initially, he made smooth progress on the far side before being produced to challenge entering the straight, hitting the front with about 300m remaining and staying on strongly to score cosily.
Also restricted to horses born locally, a handicap over 1800m was fought out by stable companions JAP Almahfuz (AF Al Buraq x AF Alezah by Iska Al Mels) and JAP Al Yasoobb (Madour x Nazwah by Dormane), the former coming out on top under Royston Ffrench. Both are trained by Irfan Ellahi for Sheikh Saeed bin Maktoum Al Maktoum.
Homebred, the 6yo entire has now won on three occasions from just nine racecourse appearances and this was his first dirt success.
A second 1800m handicap provided Tadhg O’Shea a victory, making every post a winning one aboard AF Al Baher (AF Al Buraq x Elina Des Fabries by Dormane) for his main employer, Khalid Khalifa Al Naboda and the owner’s principal trainer Ernst Oertel.
Homebred, the 9yo entire has been a great servant for connections, recording a seventh career success and second this season having landed a course and distance handicap on his penultimate outing in December.
It was then Salem Ketbi’s turn to saddle a 1-2 in a 1400m maiden, Richard Mullen enjoying a comfortable success aboard Mukhalad (Skoop x Noor Einy by Al Nasr), chased home by stable companion and fellow debutant Makhtar. Both are owned by HH Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
Mullen tracked the early speed before committing his mount, a 4yo for home passing the 300m pole after which the race was soon in safekeeping. Royston Ffrench and Makhtar made up a lot of ground having raced in the rear for much of the way.
Ray Dawson, in the silks of HE Al Sh Nasser Mohammed Nasser Al Hashar, combined with Ibrahim Al Hadhrami to take a 1400m handicap with Ares De Gion (Dahess x Arador Safinat by Dormane), previously a maiden after eight outings.
A 5yo entire, he has been generally consistent though, twice finishing runner-up and thrice third so victory was not out of turn and, once he found racing room early in the straight, he picked up nicely, hitting the front inside the last 325m and finishing his race strongly.
Source: Emirates Racing Authority
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