Lovely Pass looking for second classic in U.A.E. Oaks
The Group 3 U.A.E. Oaks is the highlight of Thursday's eighth meeting of the 2013 Dubai World Cup Carnival, and Godolphin trainer Mahmoud Al Zarooni will be hoping his U.A.E. One Thousand Guineas heroine Lovely Pass can complete the fillies' classic double.
Al Zarooni won this race for the first time last year with Falls of Lora and is responsible for two of the nine declared runners this year with Lovely Pass joined in the 1900-meter all-weather feature, who was third in the 1600-meter Guineas having won the 1400-meter trial on her local debut.
Lovely Pass, who has also beaten her stable companion in England, did not run in the trial and was having her first U.A.E. start in the first fillies' classic when running on too strongly for Shuruq, also owned by Godolphin but trained by Saeed bin Suroor and who also chased home Music Chart in the trial.
"They are two nice fillies," Al Zarooni said. "They have both come out of the Guineas well and shown they handle the all-weather. Hopefully they will stay the trip and be very competitive."
Bin Suroor has won this race on no less than seven occasions. He not only saddles Shuruq but also Mar Mar, fourth in the Guineas.
"Shuruq always tries her best and her last piece of work was very good. The step up in trip should suit and also Mar Mar who showed a lot more last time," bin Suroor said.
Remarkably, all nine declared runners also contested the U.A.E. One Thousand Guineas with the Mike de Kock-trained Emotif, fifth on that occasion, perhaps the most likely to reverse form with Lovely Pass. This will be only her third career start having won easily on debut in South Africa but suffering a setback on arrival in the U.A.E. and thus missing the trial.
"She is still short of full fitness," de Kock said. "She was a month behind our other horses having been very ill and missing a lot of work. She is fitter now and will stay the trip no problem but she will again improve from this run."
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