Mankib wins DDF Cup, Good Effort makes it a Dubai one-two
The Dubai Duty Free International Weekend at Newbury Racecourse UK, got underway on Friday and delivered UAE success in abundance.
The feature race of the day, The Dubai Duty Free Cup a listed race over seven furlongs with £37,000 prize money, was won by Mankib owned by Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Minister of Finance and Deputy Ruler of Dubai. Trained by William Haggas, Mankib had won on two of his four starts this season including over this course and distance back in July.
William Haggas's wife Maureen, daughter of the great jockey Lester Piggott, paid tribute to Sheikh Hamdan's Shadwell Stud who had looked after Mankib when he arrived from France.
After receiving Sheikh Hamdan's Trophy from Dubai Duty Free's Executive Vice Chairman & CEO Colm McLoughlin, Sinead El Sibai Senior Vice President Marketing and Jasmin Micoyco, she said, "They did a wonderful job. He's now a happy horse in a good place. We shall step him up to Group races and he should be capable of holding his own in that company."
Mankib was chased home by Good Effort in the colours of Abdulla Al Mansoori to provide a Dubai one-two.
The £25,000 Dubai Duty Free Handicap for three-year-olds and upwards over one mile and four furlongs was won by Communique in the silver silks of the Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai. Communique's trainer Mark Johnston this summer broke the record to become the winning-most trainer in British history with 4,193 winners.
Dirty Rascal trained by Richard Hannon hit back in the next, The Dubai Duty Free Nursery Handicap for two-year-olds over seven furlongs and worth £10,000. Here Dirty Rascal carried top weight to a clear cut victory prompting Hannon to comment: "He's been a star all year finishing second five times and winning twice in seven outings. He is going to shoot further up the handicap now and we will probably try for some 'black type'.
The first day concluded with The Dubai Duty Free Full of Surprises Fillies' Conditions Stakes also over the straight seven furlongs course for two-year-olds. Fashion's Star, a very expensive debutant filly had shown her trainer Roger Charlton enough at home to warrant a run in this prestigious event and she did not disappoint him or her owner, who called from America for the result.
Fashion's Star could well be a classic filly next year - "Pleasing" was the understated verdict of Charlton. "I am inclined to think that's it for the year. We shall look after her in this winter."