Horse racing

Watson signs off racing at Meydan this year with a great collection

James Jose/Dubai
Filed on December 17, 2020
Patrick Cosgrave rides Thegreatcollection to victory in the Dubai Creek Mile at the Meydan Racecourse on Thursday night. — Dubai Racing Club

Six-time UAE Champion Trainer clinches a treble at the races on Thursday night

American trainer Doug Watson signed off the last race meeting at Meydan, for the year, with an incredible treble on Thursday night.

The iconic racecourse was host to the 19th meeting of UAE horse racing season and the fourth at the venue and the six-time UAE Champion Trainer clinched a trio of race wins, including the highlight of the night.

Thegreatcollection, the six-year-old from Saint Anddan, landed the Dubai Creek Mile, the feature of the seven-race card, for his seventh victory in 25 starts.

Earlier in the evening, Watson saw two-year-old filly Mnasek make a sensational debut, winning the Longines Spirit Collection Challenge, under jockey Dane O’Neill.

A little over an hour later, Meqdam handed Watson his second victory by going on to win the Longines Spirit Collection Stakes. And it was to be back-to-back triumphs following Thegreatcollection exploits.

The Dubai Creek Mile was an intense affair with the six-year-old Capezzano slotting into the lead but it all got bunched up as they headed for the home stretch. Thegreatcollection, responded well under Patrick Cosgrave and swooped from the outside before making the run for home in the eight-furlong contest.

As Thegreatcollection took the winning post, last year’s winner Secret Ambition, conditioned by Satish Seemar and the mount of record UAE Champion Jockey Tadhg O’Shea, finished second, 2.25 lengths behind. Capezzano had to settle for third, half length behind Secret Ambition.

It also gave Cosgrave his second win of the night after he had earlier triumphed on Rb Frynchh Dude. The Helal Alalawi-trained Rb Frynchh Dude had scored a two-length victory over Amwaj in the Group 2 The Madjani Stakes, the lone Purebred Arabian contest on the card.

“I was really impressed with his first run because, like I said, he goes slow in the morning. I thought he had a little bit of a chance tonight and when the pace set up in front of him like that, Pat just sat on and if you try to bully him, get him into the race, he will stop on you. So, he just let him run his race early and picked him up,” Watson said of Thegreatcollection.

It was a tight affair in the Longines Spirit Collection Challenge before Mnasek, the daughter of Empire Maker, dashed away and left the rest of the field in her wake. She went on to triumph by a whopping 6.75 lengths over Nayefah, the charge of Tom Marquand.

“She stunned us,” Watson said of Mnasek.

“She works alright. We have only had her for about a month and she’s ready to go on this and I didn’t expect that. She finished well and something to really look forward to,” he added.

Meanwhile, Grand Dubai, trained by Ali Rashid Al Rayhi and the ride of Sandro Paiva, beat Fire Group by a length to claim the Longines Spirit Collection Mile, the third race on the card.

After being denied the feature earlier on, Seemar tasted victory with Sanad Libya clinching the Longines Spirit Collection Trophy, run over 1900 metres.

And the Fawzi Nass-trained Madkhal wrapped up the night by winning the Longines Spirit Collection Cup, the last race of the night, under Adrie de Vries.

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