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Ghaiyyath routs rivals in G3 Dubai Millennium Stakes


Middle-distance star Ghaiyyath enjoyed a perfect warm-up for the G1 Dubai Sheema Classic as he lowered the 10-furlong course record at Meydan, UAE, with an effortless win in the G3 Dubai Millennium Stakes on Thursday, 20 February.

Last season’s G1 Grosser Preis von Baden winner raced away from his five rivals down the centre of the course early on and soon established a significant advantage over the rest of the field.

Ghaiyyath continued to travel strongly in front and the Dubawi entire powered further clear in the straight under a hands and heels ride before being eased near the line by William Buick to score in a new record time of 2m 00.33s.

Spotify (James Doyle), successful in the 2019 Dubai Millennium Stakes, kept on to finish second, eight and a half lengths behind Ghaiyyath, to provide Charlie Appleby with a 1-2 in the turf contest.

Charlie Appleby said: “I am delighted with that. We have all seen what Ghaiyyath can do, especially on his first start of the year.

“The reason we came here this evening, rather than going down the traditional Dubai Sheema Classic route by running in the G2 Dubai City Of Gold on Super Saturday, is that it gives him five weeks until Dubai World Cup Night.

“The gate draw in six suited us and the plan was just to let him roll along in the lead. We have seen on numerous occasions how well he can run when he is left to his own devices.

“One of the main things in this game is getting horses to breathe. In the Arc, it was soft ground and he got hustled early on. They went a very strong gallop that day and William said he could never get him into a rhythm. Like any athlete, once you get their breathing right and, provided they have the engine, it allows them to show their full potential.

“The nice thing about tonight is that he has had an easy introduction and hopefully we can freshen him up now in preparation for the Dubai Sheema Classic on Dubai World Cup Night (Saturday, 28 March).

“Ideally, we probably would have gone straight there but, here in Dubai, Ghaiyyath is a bit trickier to train than in the UK. In the UK we have stiffer gallops whereas here we train on a flat track. He does not want much galloping because the more he does, the keener he gets. Hopefully, we can ease off him after tonight and let him float into World Cup Night.”

William Buick added: “Ghaiyyath is a very energetic horse. He was a little fresh today and puts a lot in to everything he does. He is a hugely talented horse and is going to get a nice rest into World Cup Night now.”