Twice Over not over yet

Saturday’s Dubai World Cup favourite Twice Over has come on leaps and bounds since finishing last year’s race a disappointing 10th, according to trainer Henry Cecil.

By (Alex Leach)

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Published: Sat 26 Mar 2011, 12:49 AM

Last updated: Tue 7 Apr 2015, 8:43 AM

The dual Champion Stakes victor endured a difficult time in the 2010 $10 million trip at Meydan, where bumping and then a wide run saw the now-six-year-old end up three and a half lengths behind eventual winner Gloria De Campeao.

However, having opted to prepare for the forthcoming run within the emirate this time around, it’s hoped the same setbacks won’t materialise again as Prince Khalid Abdullah’s British-bred runner makes another bold bid for glory.

“He’s adapted himself really well to being brought over and getting him cantering and working on the track,” the highly-respected Cecil said.

“He’s much more balanced on it and he’s handling it much more better through the experience.

“He’s learnt from the experience, he’s getting used to it and he really enjoyed himself out there on Friday morning.

“He’s definitely adapted himself well now, which he hadn’t last year, and he’s actually better in every way than he’s ever been. It’s now just a case of how things pan out in the race as we’re watching.” Teddy Grimthorpe, Juddmonte Farms’ racing manager in Europe, added: “One of the things that struck us last year was that the horses that ran well in a good race had all been in Dubai for some time, so that was a factor in bringing him earlier than we had the year before.”

Twice Over is seemingly set then for a strong showing and it will be needed too if he is to beat the 13 other contenders in the field to the finishing post.

“If you put up $10 million in prize money for a race, there is strength in depth throughout it,” Grimthorpe explained. “So, to single out any of them would be pretty unfair because – in this sort of race – it really does bat right down to the last horse.

That’s how it should be as it’s one of the world’s great races.”

Cecil and Grimthorpe were naturally more than a little underwhelmed with Twice Over’s last outing in this prestigious contest, even if some solace could be taken from the losing margin.

“He had a wide draw (11th), but then he got a bump just going into the turn and he was wide around the whole of the first turn,” Grimthorpe said.

“He never really got on an even keel. Normally, you want to be settling into the race – especially into the back stretch – and he was still trying to get in and get a position.

“He then came a little bit wide, but he needed to. Initially, I was very disappointed that he finished 10th, but he was actually beaten by just over three lengths when you look at that race again. It wasn’t such a bad performance as we thought at first.”

KT pick

Selections of Alex Leach

Al Quoz Sprint (5:15pm):

1). JJ The Jet Plane. 2). Happy Dubai. 3). War Artist.

Godolphin Mile (5:50pm):

1). Zafeen Speed. 2). Conveyance. 3). Skysurfers.

UAE Derby (6:25pm):

1). Mahbooba. 2). Khawlah. 3). Splash Point.

Dubai Golden Shaheen (7:05pm):

1). Rocket Man. 2). Kingsale King. 3). Euroears.

Dubai Duty Free (7:45pm):

1). Presvis. 2). Wigmore Hall. 3). Mendip.

Dubai Sheema Classic (8:50pm):

1). Deem. 2). Champ Pegasus. 3). Rulership.

Dubai World Cup:

1). Gitano Hernando. 2). Victoire Pisa. 3). Musir.

Selections of Hisham Al Gizouli

Al Quoz Sprint (5:15pm):

1). JJ The Jet Plane. 2). Happy Dubai. 3). Prohibit.

Godolphin Mile (5:50pm):

1). Zafeen Speed. 2). Conveyance. 3). Skysurfers.

UAE Derby (6:25pm):

1). Rocket Man. 2). Dynamic Blitz. 3). Dim Sum.

Dubai Duty Free (7:45pm):

1). River Jetez. 2). Presvis 3). Wigmore Hall.

Dubai Sheema Classic (8:50pm):

1). Dangerous Midge. 2). Rewilding. 3). Champ Pegasus.

Dubai World Cup:

1). Golden Sword. 2). Gio Ponti 3). Gitano Hernando..

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