UAE's Military Law looks to lay down the law at $20 million Saudi Cup
A well stacked and stellar field it is with some of the top horses and horsemen in the world having assembled and the UAE’s Military Law will be looking to lay down the law at the prestigious Saudi Cup in Riyadh on Saturday night.
At an astonishing $20 million, it is the world’s most valuable horse race and Military Law is the lone UAE contender in the 15-horse field that includes the likes of stiff American contenders — Grade 1 Malibu Stakes winner Charlatan, and Knicks Go, the Group 1 Breeders’ Cup Mile champion.
The six-year-old son of the blue-blooded Dubawi, Military Law had a good workout since being shipped to Riyadh, late on Tuesday, and is primed for the 1800 metres contest at the King Abdulaziz Racecourse.
Military Law was hand walked at the quarantine stables on Wednesday before having his first glimpse of the dirt course and cantered on Thursday. And jockey Antoni Fresu, who rode him on Friday, was happy to report that it was all systems go.
"Military Law felt great. When I pulled up, he kind of stood up and looked around and pricked his ears and wasn’t blowing at all,” Fresu said on Friday.
“He’s ready and he’s a little bit fitter than last time (before winning in Dubai), but feels just as prepared,” he added.
The Italian, who celebrated his 100th winner in the UAE last year, said that going by Military Law’s demeanour, the Group 2 Al Maktoum Challenge winner is raring to go.
"Nothing has changed much with him because in the morning’s he’s laid back, but with him, he will pull when he goes too slow. In a good canter or breeze, he goes about 70 per cent and takes care of himself. He was looking around a lot today in the beginning, but the good thing is he cooled out quickly and when we pulled up, he started pulling and didn’t want to finish and go home,” said Fresu.
Military Law will break from Gate 10.
Trainer Musabbeh Al Mheiri and owner Nasir Askars witnessed the proceedings as Military Law went through the paces.
Fresu also galloped the Al Mheiri-trained Royal Dornoch, who will be running in the stc 1351 Turf Sprint.
“We worked almost three furlongs, both of them, and they both started slow and both went in about 37 seconds for the 600 metres,” he said.
"Royal Dornoch was very good today (Friday)— much better than yesterday (Thursday). He was calm and didn’t get as sweaty. He was more focused on the blowout. I think he knows he’s about to race, because he was much better today (Friday) and very strong in the lane,” he added.
RACECARD (UAE Time):
Race 1: $1 million The Neom Turf Cup, 2100m, Turf, 5 p.m
Race 2: $1 million The 1351 Turf Sprint, 1351m, Turf, 5.35 p.m
Race 3: $2.5 million The Red Sea Turf Handicap, 3000m, Turf, 6.10 p.m
Race 4: $1 million The Jockey Club Local Handicap, 1800m, Dirt, 6.45 p.m
Race 5: $2 million The Obaiya Arabian Classic, 2000m, Dirt, 7.30 p.m
Race 6: $1.5 million The Saudi Derby, 1600m, Dirt, 8.10 p.m
Race 7: $1.5 million The Riyadh Dirt Sprint, 1200m, Dirt, 8.50 p.m
Race 8: $20 million Saudi Cup, 1800m, Dirt, 9.40 p.m