Author: Derek Thompson

IRISHMAN Aidan O’Brien will be aiming to achieve another ‘first’ on Friday when the great Irish trainer saddles Sovereign in the £500,000 Bahrain International Trophy and he is hoping to score with his very first runner in Bahrain! O’Brien has of course saddled big winners all around the world including an amazing 1-2-3 in the Breeders’ Cup two weeks ago in the USA and he has a great chance of saddling the big winner here with Sovereign who won last year’s Irish Derby by an astonishing six lengths! He comes in to the race as the top rated with a mark of 116 and with Ryan Moore flying in to ride him he has to have a major chance if he recaptures the form he showed on The Curragh last year. He has been running over longer distances recently so the drop back to a mile and a quarter means Ryan will probably have to make a lot of use of him and it could be ‘catch me if you can’ tactics. Hollie Doyle has had a wonderful year in the UK setting a new record of winners in a calendar year by a lady jockey and she could put the icing on the cake by winning on the Japanese super mare Deirdre.

Deirdre, whose eight career wins have earned her over £4,000,000 in prize money, didn’t exactly set the world alight in her last race, the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, but she is a class act and with Hollie on board could she ‘do it for the girls’? John Gosden and Frankie Dettori are certainly global giants and so Global Giant, the horse they are associated with, has to be respected. He will carry the colours of HH Sheikh Isa bin Salman Al Khalifa so he would certainly be a popular winner and the Bahrain Racing Club would love it if Frankie could win the race and then do his flying dismount in the winner’s enclosure! Dream Castle is a raider from Dubai and it would be an acceptable birthday present if he could win for his trainer Saeed bin Suroor who celebrated his 52nd birthday earlier this week! Dream Castle will have the services of the UK Champion Jockey Oisin Murphy but he will have to reverse the form of his last race at Newmarket when he was second to Lady Wannabe as they renew rivalry on Friday, Lady Wannabe trained in Ireland by Fozzy Stack and the mount of Jamie Spencer.

Desert Encounter loves travelling and this Newmarket raider from the David Simcock stable who has won two Canadian International Stakes merits plenty of respect under Andrea Atzeni, as does the ultra consistent Lord Glitters. Now seven years of age, this ultra tough grey, who’ll be ridden by Scottish born Danny Tudhope, does not know how to run a bad race and his seven career victories include the Group 1 Queen Anne Stakes last year at Royal Ascot. The ever popular Silvestre de Souza flies in to partner Bangkok for his retainer King Power Racing and former England international soccer star Mick Channon will be hoping to ‘score‘ with Certain Lad. Hoping to repel the foreign raiders are the Fawzi Nass-trained pair of Port Lions and Simsir, as well as the Hesham Al Haddadtrained What A Welcome. And the last named horse is well named because Bahrain is putting on quite a welcome for the foreign visitors for the race, who will also enjoy a trip to a track with a different kind of horsepower, the Bahrain Grand Prix circuit which of course next week hosts the Bahrain Grand Prix. It should be quite a week and with five individual Group One winners in the field and the Bahrain International Trophy at the Rashid Equestrian & Horseracing club looks like being the best yet!