Jebel Ali
Mirza Al Sayegh and officials during the presentation ceremony of the Shandwell trophy at Jebel Ali Racecourse on Friday. Mystique Moon, trained by Doug Watson, won the feature race. Image Credit: Courtesy: Toufic Al Daouk

Dubai: With a name that has the sound of a Neil Young or Van Morrison album, conditioner Doug Watson’s well-bred galloper, Mystique Moon was always intended to be a hit-maker.

A Dh450,000 acquisition at Godolphin’s 2018 Racing In Dubai Sale, Mystique Moon posted a compelling one-and-a-half-lenght victory over Riflescope in the seven-furlong Shadwell Handicap, the feature race at Ali Racecourse’s first race meeting of the new season.

With that performance, the five-year-old son of the high-class Darley stallion Sharmadal, winner of the leading sire title at Royal Ascot in June, stamped his ticket to the $12.74 million 2020 Dubai World Cup Carnival which kicks-off on January 2.

The Group 3 Jebel Ali Mile in the last week of January is also on the radar according to Watson, who was notching his second winner of the season.

“He’s a nice horse to have in the yard,” said the conditioner. “It will be a month, maybe six weeks before we bring him back, but we’ll lead up to the Carnival with him. He ran well at Meydan last season and he does run very well at Jebel Ali, so the Mile might be in play too. But we’ll just wait and see how he comes out of this.”

Mystique Moon, twice a winner on the all-weather in Britain when previously raced by Derby-winning handler Charlie Appleby for Godolphin, was ridden by Sam Hitchcott, a long-time associate of Watson’s Red Stables in the heart of Dubai.

“He was getting a bit tired close to the finish, but he’ll improve for the run,” said the Englishman. “He’s a horse that when he’s fresh he seems to run better and bounce better.”

Meanwhile, trainer Satish Seemar continued his strong start to the new campaign when he saddle a double on Friday, courtesy Lady Parma in the opening in the Orient Irrigation Service maiden and Night Castle in the Al Shafar Investment handicap. Both races were run over 1,200 metres, with Seemar’s stable jockey Richard Mullen doing the honours on Lady Parma and Conor Beasley on Night Castle.

Poland’s Szczepan Mazur enjoyed a profitable 2018-2019 campaign in the UAE, and looking forward to another good season after riding Mutawakked to a narrow neck victory over the persistent Rich And Famous in the 1,400 metre Al Reda Insurance Brokers handicap.

“It’s a lovely start to the season for me to win for a big trainer like Musabbeh Al Mheiri,” said Mazur.

“Our horse was not the favourite so it was a nice surprise, I’m very happy.

“I thought I was down for second (place) but my horse just picked up ground in the last furlong and just flew towards the winner. I caught him easily, it was nice.”

Mazur also revealed that he was set to win a fifth Polish jockey’s championship next week after riding over 50 winners.