Horse racing: Jim Crowley chases more Group 1 glory for Sheikh Hamdan


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Jim Crowley is ready to ride again for Sheikh Hamdan
Image Credit: Ahmed Kutty/Gulf News

Dubai: Jim Crowley goes in search of more Group 1 glory when he partners Tabdeed, in what appears to be a red-hot renewal of the Sprint Cup, the showpiece race of Saturday’s big-race meeting at the century-old Haydock Park Racecourse in the UK.

With over 14 Group race wins in the bag, Crowley has gained the respect and admiration of his peers this season, and all eyes will be on the former two-time British champion jockey when he takes on 12 cracking rivals in the six-furlong contest which has attracted two previous winners of the race — The Tin Man (2018) and Hello Youmzain (2019).

The Classic generation have a strong record in the race with G Force (2014), Twilight Son (2015), Quiet Reflection (2016) and Harry Angel (2017) all upstaging their elder rivals.

A lightly raced but improving five-year-old who is trained by Owen Burrows for Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and Minister of Finance, Tabdeed won the Hackwood Stakes at Newbury last time out where he denied The Tin Man by half-a-length.

Should he handle the soft ground which compromised his chances in the Group 3 Bengough Stakes at Ascot last October, he would appear to have a genuine chance of beat top contenders such as Ireland’s Dream of Dreams, defending champion Hello Youmzain, Lope Y Fernandez and Art Power.

The Sprint Cup is the third all-aged six-furlong Group 1 race on the UK calendar and follows the Diamond Jubilee Stakes and July Cup at Newmarket. Together with those races, it forms part of the British Champions Series sprint category.

Meanwhile, on a busy afternoon on the flat in the UK with Ascot and Kempton also staging important meets, the spotlight will be on John Gosden’s super mare Enable, who will face six rivals as she completes her build-up to next month’s Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe at Kempton.

The six-year-old, who is seeking a third success in the Paris showpiece at Longchamp, runs in the Group 3 September Stakes on Saturday, a race she similarly used as a prep two seasons ago before going on to claim her second Arc.

Frankie Dettori, who continues his partnership with the Juddmonte Farm’s sensation, told Racing TV: “I rode her on Wednesday — in the morning I had Stradivarius first lot and Enable second lot. One is rated 125 (Stradivarius) and one is rated 128 (Enable), so it wasn’t a bad morning. They are both in good fettle.

“She just did a routine solo gallop and she feels up for it — if everything goes well we’ve got four weeks to the Arc and we’ll have a crack at it.

“She seems focused and just to get her in a horse box and to go racing — I know there’s no crowd, but it’s something different and gets her blood pumping and it gets her closer to being as good as we can for the Arc.

“John is a master at that and that was always the plan.”



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