World Cup On Turffontein Card

See the racecard here

It is all systems go for Saturday’s richly endowed Dubai World Cup meeting.

With the lead event of the night carded as the eleventh race on the Turffontein programme, and thus included in the second Bipot and Jackpot, there will be plenty of interest for local fans – spiced up by two Mike de Kock runners on the evening.

Bob Baffert – unconcerned

Trainer Bob Baffert was not concerned after his $10 million Gr1 Dubai World Cup favourite West Coast drew stall nine for the 2000m feature at Meydan on Saturday.

The four-year-old will have only Thunder Snow on his outside in the 10-runner race as he tries to step up on his second place behind the now-retired Gun Runner in the Pegasus World Cup on his latest start.

Baffert also fields Mubtaahij, who finished fourth the race for Mike de Kock last year, and he is pleased that horse is drawn away from his stablemate in stall five.

The trainer said: “I’m fine with both. Everybody wants the (stall) one, but I do not. I don’t like the one-hole and have never liked the one.

Mubtaahij – trained by Baffert

“I’ve heard you have to be on the rail here as it’s a speed-biased rail, but I think in a race of this magnitude, when you get all of these good horses together, all that changes. We have a fast horse.

“From the outside, if they break a little slow you’re not going to get in trouble. From the inside if you break slow, you’re going to be in trouble.

“I just didn’t want them to draw next to each other. If they’d bump into each other or something else had happened, I’d hate be together.”

The Saeed bin Suroor-trained Thunder Snow is one of two runners for Godolphin, with Andre Fabre’s Breeders’ Cup Turf hero Talismanic having a first try on a dirt track from stall seven.

Satish Seemar’s North America is prominent in the betting for the Gr1 heat and the trainer was delighted to be handed stall two for his recent Meydan winner.

He said: “That’s exactly what we wanted – one, two or three. I’m very positive. We’ve got everything right in his preparation so far, and now we have the perfect draw.”

Breeders’ Cup Distaff winner Forever Unbridled will break from stall six, with Japanese challenger Awardee drawn lowest of all in one.

Dallas Stewart – will have Forever Unbridled ready

“She’s dedicated to winning all the time: every race, every work, every gallop,” trainer Dallas Stewart said of Forever Unbridled. “We’re very happy to be invited to Dubai, and hopefully, we can meet the challenge. After last year and her season, we’re confident in her and excited for the Dubai World Cup. She’s won eight races over eight different racetracks. She loves it wherever she goes and she gives it her all.”

The full fields are here

Mike de Kock has only two horses participating in Saturday’s Dubai World Cup meeting at Meydan Racecourse and he feels both are capable of at least placing in their respective races.

Mike de Kock

Mike de Kock – two runners

Janoobi, winner of the GR2 Gauteng Guineas last year, is carded to race in the $5-million Dubai Turf (Group 1) over 1800m while SA Derby winner and Vodacom Durban July runner-up Al Sahem will run in the Grade 2 Dubai Gold Cup over 3200m.

De Kock had a chat to Andrew Bon about his expectations for Saturday’s world’s richest raceday with prize money of $30 million.

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