Dubai: An ambitious trip to America potentially beckons for dual Meydan scorer Poetic Charm, following her eye-catching victory in the Group 2 Balanchine Sponsored by gulfnews.com — the feature race of the evening at Meydan Racecourse on Thursday.
An easy winner of the one-mile Cape Verdi (G2), at the same course four weeks ago, the four-year-old Dubawi filly ran strongly inside the final two furlongs to win the 1,800-metre contest by two-and-a-half lengths from British raider Mia Tesoro.
Although it appeared a rather easy task for Poetic Charm, given the strength of the opposition, there was a lot to like about the horse, who has a long stride and can clearly stretch to longer distances.
It was heartening to hear trainer Charlie Appleby suggest that the Godolphin-owned galloper could be boarding a plane for Santa Anita Park in California, with the $300,000 (Dh1.1 million) Gamely Stakes on May 17 his likely target.
The obvious progression for Poetic Charm would be the Group 1 Jebel Hatta at Meydan on Super Saturday, March 9, a contest that Appleby did not rule out entirely.
But an international race looks a lot more tantalising for a stable with the global ambitions that have been emboldened by its founder, His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.
“We have some colts for the Jebel Hatta on Super Saturday and I always like to see the fillies run against their own sex,” Appleby said. “She is definitely on an upward curve, but we have some colts out here that could be quite exciting.
“We might look out to America and there is a nice race at Santa Anita, the Group 1 Gamely Stakes which we have our eye on.
“We will get her back — I am far from saying she won’t run in the Jebel Hatta, but the ultimate aim is that we were going to look at America,” he added, stressing his preference for not running her against the male.
“It’s a nice discussion to have with His Highness Shaikh Mohammad when we start to assemble teams for Super Saturday and Dubai World Cup Night [March 30].”
The Gamely was first run in 1939 as the Long Beach Handicap but was renamed for the 1976 running to honour the US Racing Hall of Fame filly and champion racehorse who died in 1975.
It is not unusual to see Appleby aim at far-away targets considering that he has won the prestigious International Trainer of the Year award for the last three years in the UK, an award that honours the trainer who has made the biggest impact globally throughout the year.
In the space of just four days last year Appleby won major international races on both sides of the globe with Line of Duty in the Group 1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf at Churchill Downs, USA, and Cross Counter in the Melbourne Cup at Flemington, Australia.
The Englishman, who trains out of the Al Marmoom Stables in Dubai, has his string in rude form and raked up another three-timer on week seven of the ongoing Dubai World Cup Carnival. His other two successes on another profitable night’s racing include Blue Point’s stunning victory in the Group 2 Meydan Sprint Sponsored by Gulf News and Art Du Val in the Meydan Trophy Sponsored by Friday magazine.
The hat-trick took his tally of winners for the Carnival to 13 from seven days of action.
Only three meetings remain before the $35 million Dubai World Cup mega-night on March 30.