Lord North rules Dubai turf, Frankie flies in the winner circle

March 27, 2021

Frankie Dettori steers Lord North home in the Dubai Turf (Credit – DRC & Mathea Kelley)

The stands might not have been filled as usual at Meydan, but that didn’t stop Frankie Dettori from making his traditional flying dismount after the John Gosden-trained Lord North (IRE) lifted the US $4m Dubai Turf Sponsored by DP World in great style.

As expected, First Contact had gone to the lead in this 1800m race, while Dettori had positioned his son of Dubawi one off the rail towards the back of the field.

Coming out of the final bend, he kicked on and Lord North responded immediately, absolutely flying home all the way to the line to beat Japanese raider Vin De Garde, who produced a very good performance himself, by three lengths, while the Marco Botti-trained Felix finished an excellent third.

It was an impressive reappearance by the 2020 Prince of Wales’s Stakes winner at Royal Ascot and Thady Gosden, who has just entered a training partnership with his father John, said: “We were always hoping he would run well as he was in brilliant form out here. But he definitely put that race to bed very well from pretty far back. We will take him home now and then maybe give him a break and target the race he won last year at Ascot.”

Dettori, who was recording his second victory in the race that he won last in 1997 with Tamayaz, was equally impressed with the performance of the 5-year-old, who won the race in 01:46:46.

He said: “It was a nice pace. I had plenty of horse and I know he stays really well. So I kicked early and he flew. I didn’t do much else after that, he did the rest.”

Owned by HH Sheikh Zayed bin Mohammed Racing, the 5-year-old made his debut in handicaps before graduating all the way up to Group 1 level and his jockey added: “He was a handful in the early days, so he got gelded and he is much more focused now. He is a horse for all the good races this year. I’m sure the Gosdens will have a plan.”

Mickael Barzalona, jockey, VIN DE GARDE (2nd) – “I had no orders at all, he (trainer Hideaki Fujiwara) just asked me to ride my horse where he was happy and suitable. Actually I was very relaxed where I was. I just had to find a way to go, as the horse in front of me wasn’t very good. But I knew the danger would come from behind. My horse ran a very good race. I just got beaten by a horse that was better on the day, he was a Group 1 winner in Europe. This was my third year in a row I was riding the Japanese horse here, but I was beaten again.”

Lucie Botti, assistant trainer, FELIX (3rd) – “That’s the first time he ran on the grass for us and I presume it’s going to be his career-best and we’re just absolutely delighted. The rider was very happy. He said he traveled very nicely, he relaxed behind. He said he was quite surprised how well he ran. Everyone is very, very pleased.”

Pat Cosgrave, jockey EPIC HERO (4th) – “He ran a huge race. He had a nice trip around and homed down the straight good.”

Simon Crisford, trainer – “Absolutely delighted with his effort. He got into a nice rhythm early on and finished his race off strongly. Really happy for him. That was a very good effort. We were a bit unfortunate with Court House (8th). He got a little bit unsettled in the gates and missed the break. And he needs to have a forward position. He always runs in a forward way. Once he missed the break, it sort of wrecked his chances, really.”

Christophe Soumillon, jockey, LAND OF LEGENDS (5th) – “He ran really well, we had a good draw, he came strongly in the last 300m. Nice run from him.”

Press Release: DRC

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