OPERA BARON eases to Al Huwaila Cup victory
Two weeks after his last feature win, Khalifa Bin Sheail Al Kuwari’s OPERA BARON (Equiano x Opera Dancer) notched yet another cup race, AL HUWAILA CUP (THOROUGHBREDS (Class 2)) on dirt at Al Rayyan Park on Wednesday. Ridden by JP Guillambert, Jassim Mohammed Ghazali Jahromi’s 6YO ward had little trouble taking advanage of a Gate 1 start picking up a comfortable victory with two lengths and a quarter to spare. Ibrahim Saeed Ibrahim Al Malki trained TOPSY TURVY (Pivotal x Helter Helter) had to yet again settle for the runner-up spot behind Opera Baron under Eduardo Pedroza, keeping Rashid Mohammed Al Jehani saddled ALUQDAH (Zoffany x Halo De Lune) at bay by half a length. Aluqdah rounded up the top three under Gerald Avranche.
Osama Omer Al Dafea’s BAKER DE SAULARIE (Kerbella x Babiche De Saulari) had been erratic since shedding his maiden status on the opening day of the season, coming close a couple of times, and being well held on other occasions. In the penultimate race of the day on Wednesday, the colt, helmed by Ryan Curatolo for the first time, picked up a comfortable two and a half length victory in the 1800 PUREBRED ARABIAN HANDICAP (95 & below).
Khalifa Bin Sheail Al Kuwari’s AL HASNAA (Siyouni x Landora) was the second winner of the day for Harry Bentley. Bentley was astride the Mohammed Jassim Ghazali Jahromi saddled filly in Januray too when the 4yo shed her maiden status. On Wednesday, in the 1700m THOROUGHBRED HANDICAP (Class 4) (80 & below), the filly edged out Al Moatasem Al Balushi ridden Sacred Way by a head at the post in a thrilling finish.
Saif Ali Owaida Al Hajri’s ADHAB (General x Zalzalah) had been disappointing since making a winning debut in December over a mile on turf. Moving to dirt for the first time, Alban Elie Marie De Mieulle-trained filly also had apprentice jockey Damien Morin in the saddle for the first time, and the two held off a challenge from Jimmy Quinn ridden Aneeq, trained by Ahmed Mohamad Kobeissi, by a neck in the 1700m LOCAL PUREBRED ARABIAN HANDICAP (80 & below), even as two other Kobeissi wards, Khor Al Adaid and Teriaaq made it to the frame too.
Winner in the penultimate race, Wasim Al Sahn trained SHADOW GAME (Shamardal x Victoria Star) was well held last month on his last outing. On Wednesday, the Al Mugheerat Stud colt was in the winner’s circle once again with Al Moatasem Al Balushi in the saddle. The 6yo held off two Zuhair Mohsen Zuhair Maki charges, including Al Mikdam and Truancy, both ridden by brothers Rashid Ali Al Marri and Meteb Ali Al Marri respectively, by a length and a quarter in the 1900m THOROUGHBRED HANDICAP (Class 5) (70 & below).
Champion Trainer Jassim Mohammed Ghazali Jahromi’s second winner of the day was Injaaz Stud’s QATE’E (Holy Roman Emperor x Cyber Star). The 4yo had opened the season with a victory over the distance, and had showed mixed form coming into Wednesday’s six furlong LOCAL THOROUGHBRED GRADUATION PLATE. With Harry Bentley in the saddle, the colt kept a Mohamed Khaled Elahmed trained duo — Dhergham Bu Thaila and Khoud — at bay for a half a length victory at the post.
Yousef Al Hajri led a one-two for Qatari jockeys with Dr Ebtesam Abdullatif Al Muslamani’s THORNDYKE (Bahamian Bounty x Nurse Gladys) registering his second straight victory this season on Wednesday. In the THOROUGHBRED GRADUATION PLATE (Class 5), the 5yo gelding, who had won a six furlong handicap sprint in January on his last outing, edged out Acclaimed Dancer, ridden by Rashid Ali Al Marri, by three quarters of a length at the post.
After making it to the frame for the first time since her arrival in Doha, Shaheen Bin Khalid Shaheen Al Ghanim’s QUEEN SHAAHD (Kodiac x Cherika), moved surfaces, running on dirt for the first time on Wednesday. Ridden by Marco Casamento for trainer Jassim Mohammed Ghazali Jahromi, the 3yo filly shed her maiden status with a comfortable two and a half length victory in the 1700m THOROUGHBRED MAIDEN PLATE (Class 6) on her sixth career outing.
Umm Qarn’s SEALINE (Amer x Jaljalah) was back in the winner’s circle for the second straight time for trainer Alban Elie Marie De Mieulle. The 5yo, who shed his maiden status over C&D on debut two weeks ago, had Ronan Thomas in the saddle once again, and the duo had little trouble to race to a fine one and a half length victory in the six furlong LOCAL PUREBRED ARABIAN NOVICE PLATE sprint.