Veteran Irish handler Jessica Harrington hopes to end Godolphin handler Charlie Appleby’s dominance of the Group 3 Dubai Millennium Stakes at the Dubai Racing Carnival on Friday with the well-travelled Trevaunance.
A five-year-old by Cartier Award winner Muhaarar, Trevaunance finished an eye-catching second last September in the Preis von Europat Cologne, Germany and has the credentials to test the in-form handler’s resilience.
“Trevaunance has travelled over to Dubai very well and Zara, her rider, has been delighted with her,” said Kate Harrington, trainer’s daughter and assistant. “Shane (Foley) sat on her this morning (Wednesday) and was very happy with how she was.
“We are looking forward to her running a big race on Friday.”
It would take a big effort from the Irish galloper to stop the in-form Appleby who swept all four turf contests at Fashion Friday last week and has won the last six renewals of the Dubai Millennium Stakes, a trial race for horse who might go on to run in the $6m Dubai Sheema Classic (G1) or $5m Dubai Turf (G1) the Dubai World Cup night.
The big-race winning handler saddles two of the nine runners in the 2,000 metre turf race including New London (William Buick) and Warren Point (Mickael Barzalona), who look to have very strong claims.
New London is the class act having won the Group 3 Gordon Stakes in 2022 besides running a good second in the Group 1 St. Leger Stakes the same year.
"We are hoping that dropping back to a mile and a quarter is going to suit New London," Appleby said on the Godolphin website. "This race has always been the plan for him and, if you take the best of his 3-year-old form, he looks a serious contender."
Saffie Osbourne did not have best of seasonal debuts at Meydan last week when fancied Emaraaty Ana could only finish fifth in the Blue Point Sprint but the talented Irish rider will hope to make amends when she rides Solid Stone, a former winner of the Stakes at Chester in 2022.
“His main target is the G2 Dubai City of Gold on Super Saturday,” said trainer Jamie Osbourne. “We’re running him here with a view that it will bring him on for that.”
Friday’s card also features the Listed Blue Point Sprint and the
Jumeirah Fillies Classic and Jumeirah Guineas for leading three-year-olds.
Once more Appleby’s runner, Mischief Magic looks the horse to beat in the Dubai Sprint which has attracted a field of 14 runners all looking to make an impression that could see them head to the Group 1 Al Quoz Sprint on March 30.
The Exceed And Excel gelding won the 2022 Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint (G1T) and warmed up for this race with a fourth-place effort in the Listed Ertijaal Dubai Dash in December.
"Mischief Magic came out of the Ertijaal Dubai Dash well, and coming back to six furlongs should play to his strengths," Appleby said. "I feel he should be a big player."
And if that’s not enough the English Derby-winning handler is also responsible for the favourite in the Jumeirah Fillies Classic over 1,400 metres
Appleby relies on two-time UK scorer Cinderella’s Dream (Buick) and Beautiful Love who was placed in a Listed contest at Newmarket last year.
The Jumeirah Guineas also features a strong Appleby entry in Legend Of Time, a smart winner of the trial for this race a month ago.
Racing begins at 5:30pm with a Handicap for Purebred Arabians, over 1600metres on dirt.
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