Dubai: Former champion jockey and Dubai resident Richard Mullen got the new flat racing season at Meydan Racecourse off to a new beginning when he partnered Lady Snazz to record an impressive victory in the opening race on Thursday evening.
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic the meeting was held without general public and in strict adherence to government health and safety protocols.
Trained by Satish Seemar, who admitted that he was ‘surprised’ with the ‘classy’ race that Lady Snazz ran, the four-year-old daughter of former Dubai World Cup winner, Curlin, did not look like a horse that was winning the first race of her career.
Summoned by Mullen to take over the running at the 600 metre mark, Lady Snazz was welcome to the task and stretched out readily to run on for a cosy three and a quarter length victory over Litecoin, the mount of champion jockey with Falcon Claws and Dane O’Neill four lengths back in third.
Speaking to the Dubai Racing Channel after the race, which was the first of six sponsored by Emirates Airline on card, Seemar said: “We always backed her as a two-year-old and always thought highly of her.
“But she’s taken time to come within herself. Being a daughter of Curlin they always have a little bit of a late start, from our experience.
“This season, when we started preparing her, we saw that she had more muscles and development so we came here quite positive,” Seemar added,
“But she did surprise me. Right out of the gates she ran a very classy race. Ritchie let her do her own thing and she finished really well. That was very impressive.”
Meanwhile, the feature race of the opening night, the Emirates Airline Conditions Stakes saw another highly regarded filly, Rio Angie, put her rivals to the sword when streaking home an eight and a half length winner of the 1,400 metre contest.
The daughter of Honour Code, who was having only the fourth start of her career, was ridden by Sam Hitchcott for former champion trainer, Doug Watson.
Soon after the break Hitchcott took his filly to the head of proceedings and the pair never looked back thereafter.
Seemar and Mullen team up again later in the evening to land the Emirates Sky Cargo Handicap with Kinver Edge who looks a nice horse for the future.
Formally trained by Charlie Appleby for Godolphin, the four-year-old son of Speightstown was only making his second start for Seemar, who was full of praise for his winning performance.
“He’s a nice gentleman of a horse,” said the Zabeel Stables maestro of the Godolphin Sale purchase. “I was telling Richie that the kind of reminds me of Reynaldo (Reynaldothewizard) but with a different style of running, but there are a lot of similarities.
“I would like to compliment for Darley breeding operation for the quality of horses. We’ve had so much success from the Godolphin sales, I love the sales and I love to pick some horses out of the sale,” he added.
“Very good effort from my team back home.”