The Brock Talk

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

US Stars Have Dubai World Cup In Sights

With the recent announcement by trainer Bill Mott (photo right) that Breeders’ Cup Ladies Classic winner Royal Delta will be pointed to the $10 million Dubai World Cup sponsored by Emirates Airlines, it appears the United States will again be well represented in the March 31 race. Earlier this month, trainer Graham Motion told Daily Racing Form that 2011 Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands winner Animal Kingdom is also scheduled for the world’s richest horse race. The Dubai World Cup is run annually at the luxurious Meydan Race Club in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

Royal Delta, purchased for $8.5 million at the Keeneland November Sale by Ben Leon’s Besilu Stables from breeder Palides Investments N. V., has been training lightly at Payson Park training Center in Florida and may make the Dubai World Cup her first start of the year. Last year as a 3-year-old, Royal Delta also won the Alabama Stakes and Black Eyed Susan Stakes in addition to her big score in the Ladies Classic. Mott will be trying for his second World Cup victory after winning the inaugural edition with Cigar in 1996.

Meanwhile, Animal Kingdom has been training more aggressively from Motion’s barn at Fair Hill Training Center in Maryland and may be headed to the Gulfstream Park Handicap on grass Feb. 11 before heading to Dubai for the World Cup. Motion also told Daily Racing Form that he has not ruled out a February turf race in Dubai either.

Two-time Dubai World Cup winning trainer Bob Baffert has also indicated that his star older horse, Game On Dude (photo left), may also make the international trip to Dubai this year. Game On Dude was last seen finishing second to Drosselmeyer in the Nov. 5 Breeders’ Cup Classic and also won the Santa Anita Handicap and Goodwood Stakes at Santa Anita last year. Baffert won the 1998 Dubai World Cup with Kentucky Derby winner Silver Charm and the 2001 World Cup with Captain Steve.

Baffert told Daily Racing Form that he is planning to start Game On Dude next in the San Antonio Stakes Feb. 5 at Santa Anita and then will decide between defending his title in the $750,000 Santa Anita Handicap or shipping to the Dubai World Cup after that.

The 10-furlong Dubai World Cup has been won by North American-based horses seven times. Others include Pleasantly Perfect in 2004 and Invasor, Curlin and Well Armed in 2007-09 respectively. Street Cry, winner of the 2002 World Cup, had raced in the United States at age two and three but was based in Dubai during the winter of his 4-year-old campaign and was owned by Sheikh Mohammed al Maktoum of Dubai. Sheikh Maktoum is the Vice President of the U.A.E., ruler of Dubai and owner of Meydan Race Club.

Help Needed For Large Louisiana Thoroughbred Rescue

The Louisiana Horse Rescue, Remember Me Rescue, Sabine Humane Society and the Louisiana State school of veterinary medicine are asking for your assistance in a 60-horse seizure currently underway in Many, Louisiana.

According to the Remember Me website and reports from KSLA-TV in Shreveport, La., some 25 horses have already been found dead with others assumed buried at the farm owned by Charles Ray Ford, 46, a thoroughbred owner and breeder in the Ark-La-Tex area.

Sabine Parish District Attorney Don Burkett reportedly has been to the site where some 53 broodmares and 20 yearlings were believed to be located as recent as 2010, and has indicated that felony animal cruelty charges will be levied against Ford. KSLA-TV reports also said they were told Burkett would levy a separate charge for each horse affected, whether deceased or starving. Less than half of the broodmares and only six yearlings have been found at the farm.

Horses that are healthy enough to move are being taken to New Orleans where they will be evaluated and rehabilitated. Remember Me reports on their website that the cost to care for the horses is currently $450 per day. Remember Me is a Texas-based horse rescue operation run by Donna Keen, wife of trainer Dallas Keen who races in Texas and Louisiana.

For more information and to help financially, go to the Remember Me website.

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