Dubai: The benefits of utilising Jebel Ali Racecourse as a strategic training ground were well and truly driven home by champion trainer Doug Watson’s stable star Cosmo Charlie, who bounced back to his best form with a towering victory in the feature race at the Gulf News-sponsored race meeting at Meydan Racecourse on Thursday evening.
A well-beaten eighth on his seasonal appearance at Jebel Ali three weeks ago, Cosmo Charlie looked more like the supreme athlete who we saw winning the Listed Al Bastakiya last season.
With his owner, Ramzan Kadyrov, President of the Chechen Republic, watching from close quarters on the stand side rails, the improving four-year-old son of Stay Thirsty, overcame a poor start to snatch the lead on the rails under Pat Dobbs and never put a foot wrong thereafter.
He’s a very nice horse on his day, when he gets things his own way. He’s maturing and having gelded him, helps. He could be very competitive at the Carnival.
Even the fleeting challenge of Radaini and jockey Connor Beasley was dealt with authority as he changed gears and stretched out majestically for a very popular victory.
Etijaah, also trained by Meydan specialist, Watson, ran on impressively for second.
Watson, who was notching a seven winner of the term, confirmed that the Dubai World Cup Carnival, which runs from January 3 to March 30 would be on the main agenda for Cosmo Charlie following his next outing in the Dubai Creek Mile on December 20.
“I was then a bit worried he might not get home but he had that race up the hill (Jebel Ali) which seems to have put him spot on for this one,” Watson explained.
“He’s a very nice horse on his day, when he gets things his own way.
“He’s maturing and having gelded him, helps. He could be very competitive at the Carnival…. He’s a tough horse.”
Meanwhile, Satish Seemar, another former champion trainer in the UAE, continued his strong start to the season, when he bagged a double, including a very impressive victory with Lavaspin, who was recording his second win at Meydan, this time in the Friday handicap.
The four-year-old son of Hard Spun, was never headed once he took the under Richard Mullen and was always travelling smoothly to the line.
Seemar commented: “This horse is much improved this season and is another big success from the Godolphin sales, which has been brilliant for attracting new owners.
“He was not that expensive and now we have realised he is a sprinter, we can campaign him accordingly. We tried him over 1,400m last season at Jebel Ali when he did not stay, but that is two from two this season and we hope he is a Carnival horse.”
Seemar and Mullen teamed up with Bochart to land the Reach by Gulf News 1,400m handicap, and the pair ran on far too strongly for 13 toiling rivals. Owned by Al Bait Mutawahed Team, the 5-year-old Dubawi gelding has now won four times, including twice at Meydan.