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17 April 2024

Turf History Beckons for Lord North

By E247

History beckons for Lord North, who will become the first horse to win four times on the Dubai World Cup card if successful again in the G1 Dubai Turf [sponsored by DP World.]
“After his win in the race last year we decided to give him a proper break, so he went to Godolphin and had a lovely time in a paddock,” said co-trainer John Gosden, who has once again booked Frankie Dettori for the ride. “His comeback run in the Winter Derby was good, although 2200 metres is a little bit further than he wants to go.
“He’s training well and we’re confident he’ll put up a very bold show. It was always the plan for Frankie to ride; we discussed it when I said goodbye to him on Champions Day at Ascot in October before his move to America.”
Gosden also trains Nashwa, a three-time Group 1 winner who has a Prix de Diane, Nassau Stakes and Falmouth Stakes on her CV.
"There are no gimmes at this level, anywhere," said Lord Grimthorpe, Racing Manager for owners Blue Diamond Stud. "In these races you expect the best to turn up for $5 million.
"She’s won Group 1s over a mile [1600m] and a mile and a quarter [2000m], so in theory nine furlongs ought to be her optimum trip. That was another plus side for her coming."
As the winner of the G1 Arima Kinen – the biggest race in Japan in terms of wagering and attendance – Do Deuce is already a hero in his homeland.
The three-time Group 1 winner was a late scratching from this race a year ago but arrives in good form this time. He is trained by Yasuo Tomomichi, who won this race with Vivlos in 2017.
The trainer explained his rationale for dropping back to 1800metres, rather than sticking at 2400m for the G1 Longines Dubai Sheema Classic.
“I considered the Sheema Classic as well and we discussed it with Yutaka Take [jockey]”, he said. “The Sheema Classic tends to be a race which benefits the front-runners or those with a good position. For Do Deuce’s racing style, we both agreed that the Dubai Turf is a race where horses can win from anywhere.”
Godolphin trainer Charlie Appleby runs just four horses on the card, one of whom is Measured Time, who won the G1 Jebel Hatta over course and distance in January.
"He's two-from-two out here in the Al Rashidiya and the Jebel Hatta," Appleby said. "We brought him here for a racecourse gallop as there was a big gap from the Jebel Hatta, and he pleased us on that morning.
"It’s a step up now. He’s a horse we’ve had a lot of confidence in as a half-brother to Rebel's Romance, he’s always had that tag around his neck that we’d be following him closely. He’s pleased us and we hope that he’s going to be very competitive on Saturday."
There is yet to be an American-trained winner of the Dubai Turf, but trainer Michael Stidham will try to change that with Catnip, who ran an excellent third in the G1 Pegasus Turf last time out.
“It's a very contentious race, and we knew that coming over,” said Stidham, who won the Dubai World Cup itself in 2021 with Mystic Guide. “When he stepped up his game at Gulfstream (third to Warm Heart in the GI Pegasus World Cup Turf January 27th), he ran a huge new top (speed figure) in that race. We had a choice of running him for $300,000 or $5million and we decided to take a shot at the $5 million and brought him over. So far, so good.”
The G1 Dubai Turf [sponsored by DP World] is race seven of nine with a scheduled post time of 7:10pm UAE.