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Kentucky Derby and Horse Racing at The Downey Profile®

UAE Derby Notes: Friday, March 30, 2018


Gold Town – The winner of the UAE 2000 Guineas Trial and the UAE 2000 Guineas faces stiffer competition on this occasion and also steps up in distance, but trainer Charlie Appleby said he is satisfied with his preparation.

“Like I say about the other horses, everything has gone well with him, and we have got him this far in good condition,” Appleby said. “Saturday is a different test for him but we know he likes the dirt at Meydan and I think the longer trip will suit him.”

Mendelssohn, Threeandfourpence and Seahenge – The three UAE Derby hopefuls from the barn of Aiden O'Brien are pointed to also earn a spot in the Kentucky Derbyon May 5. They came out on the dirt track with Mendelssohn catching the most attention from the onlookers.

“Mendelssohn was out there shouting on the track this morning,” Brien said. “It is just a little bit of immaturity, even though he has developed well over the winter. He was a bit like that in America, and he won the Breeders’ Cup, so it’s nothing to worry about.

“He wears blinkers on race day but not in the mornings. All three for the Derby are in great form and their preparation has gone very well. Threeandfourpence and Seahenge will like going up in trip, we feel. As for tactics, the intention off all three will be to jump and go forward. If any one of them gets to the front, that’s great and if they are handy they are handy. It seems it is best being forward on the surface. Maybe they won’t be able to lead, but they will work it out as they go.

Rayya – Leading trainer Doug Watson will send out the filly Rayya in Saturday’s race and she is likely to lead the charge from the inside post under regular rider Pat Dobbs.

Rayya, who looked great again on Friday morning at her home base of Red Stables, will be having her final start for Watson before leaving for America and the care of trainer Bob Baffert and a shot at the Kentucky Oaks.

Reride - No notes.

Ruggero – He had a routine easy canter for one lap on the dirt track at Meydan.

“The inside draw (post 2) will be good for him. He isn’t bothered by being trapped on the rail in a race.  He looks happy, his appetite is great and he is very fit.  He is very unflappable. Everything has gone well so far,” trainer Yuichi Shikato said.

Taiki Ferveur – He stayed in quarantine and cantered around the trotting track a bit.

“Since we are racing tomorrow, we didn’t want to overdo it today. Some light hacking near the stable was perfect. He is doing really great for his first trip overseas,” trainer Mitsunori Makiura said.

Yulong Warrior – He had a steady hack canter over 2000 meters at his private Zabeel Stables on Friday.

Not since Little Jim finished third to Lundy’s Liability in the UAE Derby 10 years ago has Satish Seemar saddled a runner in the race with the anticipation he has for Yulong Warrior.

“He’s a listed race winner running at the top group level, so he will have to improve on what he has done on the racecourse so far,” Seemar said.

“But he won his stakes race, the Al Bastakiya, by more than 11 lengths and that entitles him to go into group company. He’s still improving, and he’ll have a lot more going for him in the near future.”

The immediate prospect for Yulong Warrior, who will carry his original racing colours on Saturday after being bought back by Chinese businessman Zhang Yie Shang’s company Yulong Investments last weekend, could include a return to the US. He was given a late  nomination for the American Triple Crown.

Edited Emirates Racing release

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