The World’s richest horserace, the £6.4million Dubai World Cup, takes places on Meydan’s Tapeta surface on Saturday (March 26) with Henry Cecil’s Twice Over 3/1 favourite in the Dubai World Cup betting to land the £3.84million winner’s pot.
Newmarket-based Italian trainer Marco Botti will be praying Gitano Hernando can land the prize for his new owner, the controversial Chechen president Ramzan Kadyrov. It will be the colt’s final start for Botti. Apparently sold for a healthy $4million, take the tip from the previous owners and leave this one out of calculations in the Dubai World Cup Betting. He is an admirable and consistent sort and has got an American Grade 1 victory on his CV but he is not within 10lb of genuine Group 1 company in the UK. The 10/1 may be tempting each-way in a race that lacks strength in depth but he will run without my two shillings on him.
Of more interest is Gio Ponti, a true Grade I class performer in the States with form in Dubai. He was a running on fourth in this race last year, beaten just a length and a half by the winner. Gitano Hernando was two places behind. Gio Ponti hails from the American-based yard of Frenchman Christophe Clement. He is a shrewder trainer than some give him credit for. In a land where even the geldings get the balls galloped off them, Clement has a slightly softer, more European style of training. This may account for the fact his horses appear on the racetrack sound year in year out. This longevity is a truly suspicious and strange phenomenon across the pond.
I despise tipping favourites. They are invariable bad value and I like it even less when they are drawn wide. All this applies to TWICE OVER, but at odds of around 11/4 in the Dubai World Cup betting he actually looks good value, such is his superior class.
Twice Over possesses a devastating turn of foot. Among so much more, he has won an Eclipse and a couple of Champion Stakes on a truly glittering CV. He had the perfect prep race when simply destoying his field in a Group 2 here at Meydan on March 3. Musir and Gitano Hernando were firmly put in their places that day.
Win, lose or get beaten by the draw, he is undoubtedly the best horse in the field by some margin. This race is not a sprint. It is over ten furlongs and Twice Over is not a front runner. So in a perverse sense the stall 12 draw may be to our advantage if he goes off at marginally inflated betting odds as everyone blindly concentrates on the sole negative. Anything over 2/1 about Twice Over is worth a bet.
Such is the utter mutual contempt between Dubai’s ruling Maktoum family and the Coolmore / Ballydoyle mafia, that Aidan O’Brien does not send his horses to the Arab state. Well not until now. Much as the Irish mob hate the Arabs, they love money more. There is only so long that you can sit in Ireland salivating and resisting the lure of all those dirhams. So enter their gladiator Cape Blanco. I could not put anyone off betting on this son of Galileo. The Irish Derby winner was simply devastating in the Irish Champion Stakes. Maybe even Twice Over would have struggled to match such a performance on the day.
I don’t think it is a hinderance that Jamie Spencer is on board Cape Blanco, but he has a poor record riding for Ballydoyle (remember that season to forget in 2004) and so oftens leaves his challenge a bit too late. However good they are, an injudicious ride can always get them beat. Ask Greville Starkey.
Drawn in stall four, Cape Blanco has a nice berth but he has no form on an artificial surface and that is reason enough to bypass him as a Dubai World Cup betting pick on this occasion. So I will stick with the consistent turbo-boost of Twice Over. Expect him to be delivered with a perfectly-timed challenge under Tom Queally, who has proved himself on the world stage and is a reliable pilot under pressure.
Bet with these: Online Bookies