This week’s Meydan card is extremely difficult to decipher. There are full fields at every turn but there is plenty of quality performers to add some extra excitement to proceedings. The G2 Al Fahidi Fort sees Charlie Appleby take the wraps of three classy horses. Glorious Journey carries a G2 penalty but that may not be enough to stop him getting the better of Mubtasim and Mythical Magic. Final Song takes on nine fillies’ in the UAE 1000 Guineas. She will be short odds but is likely to get the job done.
It’s hard to put a line through the chances any of these contenders. This race pits some hardened handicappers against some unexposed potential improvers. Dubai Future and Court Poet are firmly in the former category but Gifts Of Gold carries an attractive profile into the race. Saeed Bin Suroor’s charge ran as well as could be expected when third behind Pablo Escobarr and the ultra impressive winner Universal Order. He doesn’t either of those rivals to contend now and is likely to go close under Christophe Soumillon.
Equilateral is likely to be favorite here, but he fails to convince in his attitude at the business end of his races. A gelding operation may have done him the world of good, but he remains opposable at his current odds. Waady has been in fantastic form on the dirt but it is easy to forget his back class on grass. He finished 5th in the 2015 Kings Stand Stakes at Royal Ascot when in the care of John Gosden. Recent outings suggest that he is back to something approaching his best and he rates as a confident each-way selection.
Festival Of Ages will run in a hood for the first time and this is a smart move by trainer Ismail Mohammed. This strapping son of Medaglia d’Oro made an eye-catching return from ten months off when going clear of the field in a course and distance handicap a fortnight ago. He tailed off to finish a well beaten ninth on that occasion but runners from this yard can improve markedly from run to run. Odds of 33/1 are generous as this 6yo is likely make a bold bid.