Shuruq shows old Godolphin virtues to open Dubai Carnival
Thursday 09 January 2014
Godolphin threw down the gauntlet on the opening of day of the Dubai Carnival with two runners who recently emerged from a six-month ban resulting from the Mahmood al-Zarooni steroid scandal – and were instantly rewarded in Round One of the appropriately named Al-Maktoum Challenge, but with a filly beyond reproach in Shuruq.
The Saeed bin Suroor-trained four-year-old, a Listed and Group Three winner at the Carnival last year, lost her form on turf in Britain last summer and was last seen languishing in the rear alongside the damp dunes of the North Denes in a Listed contest at Yarmouth's Eastern Meeting. Back at the more congenial oasis of Meydan, she set a track record for a mile on the tapeta surface.
Steeler, one of 22 Godolphin horses barred from racing after being administered anabolic steroids by Zarooni, finished fourth after being sent off 3-1 favourite, whether or not in misplaced expectation of illicit improvement on his form when last seen finishing third to Kingsbarns in the Racing Post Trophy in October 2012, when trained by Mark Johnston. Artigiano, the other of Zarooni's victims to return, ran third in a Listed contest.
Charlie Appleby, who took over Zarooni's string last summer after the trainer was banned for eight years for his misdeeds, trained two handicap winners on the card.
Solwhit, the winner of last season's World Hurdle at Cheltenham, has been ruled out of this year's Festival. The 10-year-old had missed his planned reappearance at Leopardstown just after Christmas owing to a fetlock injury. Trainer Charles Byrnes will try to prepare Solwhit for Aintree or Punchestown later in the spring.
Latest in Sport
Michael Schumacher: Ferrari president Luca Cordero di Montezemolo admits he is still in shock over accident
Jose Mourinho claims Cristiano Ronaldo and his Real Madrid team-mates spend too much time looking in the mirror
Is this the cutest pitch invasion ever? Brazil squad embrace young South African fan in heartwarming scenes after friendly match
QPR financial results: Rangers face huge fine in top flight of debtors
World Cup 2014: Sam Wallace picks his England squad - is there a place for Andy Carroll, and who wins the battle between Luke Shaw and Ashley Cole?
- 1 The future of sex: The first female condoms were derided, mistrusted and shunned - but will their modern counterparts catch on?
- 2 South African rhino finally put down after roaming Kruger park for days with horn hacked off and bullet in brain
- 3 Italian pensioner hires an escort who turns out to be his son's girlfriend
- 4 Orgasm machine to deliver climax at the push of a button
- 5 Channel 4 announces two-hour TV show to be broadcast 'Live from Space' later this month
Apple's Tim Cook: Business isn’t just about making profit
Thousands of young people forced to go without food after benefits wrongly stopped under 'draconian' new sanctions regime
Ukraine crisis: New navy chief 'defects' and surrenders Crimean HQ as Putin claims ultranationalists forced intervention
Britain's top vet sparks controversy with call for ban on slashing animals' throats in 'ritual' slaughters for halal and kosher meat products
Ukraine crisis: Russia dismisses '3am ultimatum' as 'total nonsense'
If you're horrified by a flame-roasted dog, you should be shocked at a hog roast
£12000 per annum: Inspiring Interns: A small but growing chain of boutique hot...
£12000 per annum: Inspiring Interns: The company works with Tier 1 FTSE 100 Ba...
£45 - 60k Per Annum: Charter Selection: Highly profitable leisure brand, marke...
£30000 - £50000 per annum + Highly Competitive Salary: Austen Lloyd: Residenti...