Emirati trainer Suroor hopes for snow

Emirati trainer Suroor hopes for snow
Thunder Snow (blue in the middle) ridden by Christophe Soumillion in action at the Meydan last year.

Dubai - Emirati trainer Saeed bin Suroor is hoping his Thunder Snow will return him to where he belongs - back at the top



By James Jose

Published: Thu 29 Mar 2018, 7:58 PM

Last updated: Thu 29 Mar 2018, 10:06 PM

Unlike last year where overcast clouds hung in the sky and gave way to rain, it is set to be a sunny Saturday this time, with temperatures dropping just that little bit before the big race.
But Godolphin's handlers will be hoping for some thunder and then some snow.
Emirati trainer Saeed bin Suroor is hoping his Thunder Snow will return him to where he belongs - back at the top.
With an astonishing seven victories in the Dubai World Cup alone, Suroor is the most successful trainer. But he has gone two years without a win in the piece de resistance, with Suroor's last victory coming with the eight-year-old Prince Bishop.
Since then, two American horses have stamped their mark on the dirt of the Meydan Racecourse, with California Chrome and then Arrogate increasing USA's tally to 25 wins.
There are five American horses this year but Suroor is quite optimistic that Thunder Snow can snow down on them and swell UAE's tally to 76.
"The best horses in the world are in the race. There are horses from American and Japan and all the 10 horses are the best in the world," Suroor said about the field at the traditional Breakfast with the Stars, early on Thursday morning.
Thunder Snow, the mount of Belgian Christophe Soumillon, drew Gate 10 but Suroor is undeterred about the wide Stall.
"Thunder Snow will try hard. I know he got draw 10 but we have won the World Cup seven times. I have had horses win from draw 1 and draw 10, which only means, if he is a good horse, he can win the race. But he needs to take a good position in the race. Christophe Soumillon knows the horse well. He has ridden him since the start. If he is in a nice position, the horse has a chance to run a big race," added Suroor.
Suroor also said that breaking from Gate 10 could work in Thunder Snow's favour as he would avoid the kickbacks. And he hoped that the four-year-old from Helmet, would be handy during the race and then make the push.
"I would like to see him somewhere close, to stay away from the kickback. Draw 10 makes it even easy for him to stay away from the kickback. But the most important thing I want is for him to jump well from the stalls to be somewhere handy, second or third in the race," said Suroor.
Suroor has been impressed by Thunder Snow since he was a yearling and happy with his progress.
"I liked this horse when he was a yearling and we have all of his family there with us. Then, we took him to France and as a three-year-old, he won a Group 1 race. We brought him here and he won the UAE Derby and the Guineas," he said.
"The focus and the programme was to run him at the Dubai World Cup this year. His win in the Group 1 in France gave us confidence to bring him to Dubai. He has done well here so far. He won the second round of the Maktoum Challenge. The last race was a very tough race. Kieren Fallon rode him in the morning and he was very happy with him. He finished his work very well," he added.
As for Thunder Snow's future plans, Suroor, who also has seven other wins on Dubai World Cup night, said: "After the World Cup, he will take a break and then we will find a race for him at Royal Ascot. This year he has been relaxed with the mile and a quarter we have picked up for him."
james@khaleejtimes.com


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