Special delivers for Bin Suroor
News from Meydan where Saeed bin Suroor celebrated his 200th Dubai Carnival winner and Very Special made her class count.
Very Special made her class count (Dubai Racing Club // Andrew Watkins)
Saeed bin Suroor celebrated his 200th Dubai World Cup Carnival winner in perfect fashion after Very Special made her class count to land back-to-back victories in the Cape Verdi at Meydan.
Although not sighted since finishing second behind Alice Springs in last year's Falmouth Stakes, the five-year-old was sent off a 5/6 chance to back up her victory in the mile Group Two of 12 months ago.
Despite taking time to get into top gear, the daughter of Lope De Vega forged on from the four-timer-seeking Muffri'Ha deep inside the final furlong before keeping Opal Tiara at bay by half a length.
The winner, who completed a double for the trainer and winning jockey Jim Crowley, is 25/1 for the Dubai Turf with Sky Bet.
Crowley said: "I didn't force her and I just sat where she was happy. The pace slackened quite a bit turning for home, but she had the gears to get out of trouble. Another furlong wouldn't be a problem for her.
"She is lively and that is why she wears the hood. It was her first run of the year, she was a little bit fresh in the race which she is entitled to be. You would like to think there is a fair bit of improvement."
Promising Run (4/1) provided Crowley and Bin Suroor with the opening leg of their brace when gaining a first success since landing the 2015 Rockfel Stakes when taking the Group Two Al Rashidiya by half a length.
Charlie Appleby ensured more success was to head the way of Godolphin after enjoying a treble, highlighted by the victory of Fly At Dawn in the UAE 2000 Guineas Trial.
Although finishing second behind stablemate Van Der Decken in a conditions race last month, the son of Discreet Cat turned the tables in comprehensive style on this occasion.
It looked as though favourite Cosmo Charlie had slipped the field in the seven-furlong affair after opening up what looked to be a race-winning advantage down the home straight.
But with his stamina assured the 13/2 shot wore down the market leader inside the final furlong before obliging by half a length, with Van Der Decken well held back in fifth.
Appleby said: "We had this earmarked for him to come out here. What has helped is that we applied the tongue tie this evening and it has just allowed him to get his breathing right and his head in the right position.
"He is a very game horse. I was pleased we got the run in here before the New Year. I know he got beat on that occasion, but experience on this dirt is such a key asset to have. I feel that we have utilised that this evening."
Gold Trail (15/8) got the ball rolling for the Newmarket handler as he moved a step closer to a trip to Australia later in the year when defeating November Handicap winner Prize Money by a length in the mile-and-a-half handicap.
Appleby added: "All being well Australia will be the plan. I've not spoken to connections yet, but we had it pencilled in that we would go down there for a race called the Mornington Cup which is a 'win and you're in' for the Caulfield Cup.
"It's down in Melbourne and the ground will be quick there, which this horse likes. I think he will be quite a useful horse over there."
The Appleby-trained Baccarat and Adam Kirby rounded out proceedings in the concluding six-furlong handicap, beating stablemate Jungle Cat.
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