The Dubai Carnival 2019 is now in full swing as we head towards this year’s Dubai World Cup on Saturday March 30th.
The Carnival takes place across ten race meetings between January and the big day at the end of March every year, growing ever more in popularity with those trainers based outside of the UAE, is to become recognised as a major international event.
Dubai World Cup day is the richest race day anywhere in the world. Last year’s big race was won by host Sheikh Mohammed’s Godolphin outfit and their Thunder Snow, who went on to claim third place in the Breeders’ Cup Classic in the States in November.
Given Godolphin’s strong influence on things, British and Irish classic hopes are often seen out at this carnival rather than being kept in a box until Newmarket or York rolls around and this can only be a good thing.
Thursday sees Saeed bin Suroor’s classy Prix Jean-Luc Lagadere winner Royal Marine return in the UAE 2000 Guineas Trial ahead of a crack at the main event for the three-year-olds in March, though it is very much hoped he does return in time to contest the 2000 Guineas at Newmarket before heading to Royal Ascot.
The biggest prep day for the big meeting on March 30th is what is known as Super Saturday, held on March 9th. This day allows handlers to fine tune their animals before appearing on World Cup day, though there are more mouth watering meetings at Meydan before then.
The racing scene has to change, it has to keep up with the times and it must evolve. It’s truly an international sport, more so even than football for example, and so the betterment of this carnival and the introduction of Pegasus World Cup day at Gulfstream in Florida can only be good for the sport. If only more domestic UK trainers would support them with their best horses.