CALIFORNIA based, trainer John Sadler won’t ship out of the United States just for the heck of it. And when he does, he is quite a force to be reckoned with. Fresh off a brilliant 2018 in which his Accelerate was an absolute star, including a victory in the $6 million Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Classic, he looks to add some gloss to his 2019 season when returning to Dubai for the first time in a decade. “It has been a while, but I think this horse will run well,” he said. “It was Nad Al Sheba the last time I was there and this will be my first runner at Meydan.” This horse is Platinum Warrior, who has quickly taken to Sadler’s programme, including a smart victory last out in the Grade 2 San Marcos over 2000m on Santa Anita’s turf course.
The effort was his fourth for Sadler, 12th overall and fifth since shipping to the US from Mick Halford’s yard in Ireland. “We acquired him in the summer and he looks like a real stayer,” Sadler said. “He won at a mile and a quarter in the Grade Two the other day and I think he has a lot more there. He’s already won well in Europe as a 3yo and just took a bit of time once he joined us. “He ran off the plane when fourth in the Grade 1 Secretariat at Arlington and was unlucky not to be third that day. “He shipped to California and was unlucky again in a couple races and then ran really well. We saw that he’s a very good horse.” The grey son of Galileo and Group Two winning miler Laugh Out Loud will try to overcome this big step up in trip, but in his favour he does have a barn behind him with success in the region.
Sadler has only had two starters in Dubai, but won with his first when landing the 2004 Group 1 Dubai Golden Shaheen with Our New Recruit. He was also eighth in the 2009 edition of said event with Machismo. Topping those expected to take on Platinum Warrior is the daunting Godolphin and Charlie Appleby duo of Group 1 Melbourne Cup hero Cross Counter, joined by Group Two winner Ispolini, as well as Group 1 Prix du Cadran winner Call The Wind. Other probables are Melbourne Cup placed Prince Of Arran, South African Group One winner Marinaresco, Hong Kong based Gold Mount and locally based trio Team Talk, Sharpalo and Red Galileo.