Doug Watson Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News

Dubai: It is official. Doug Watson is the new UAE Champion Trainer. American Watson won his seventh title after Ernst Oertel collected just one win on Friday night's season ending card at Al Ain. Red Stables chief trainer Watson and Oertel were tied on 38 wins apiece going into the final weekend of racing. However, a double on the penultimate card at Meydan Thursday evening took Watson two clear, with South African Oertel forced to play catch during Al Ain's Purebred Arabian-heavy seven race card.

Oertel needed to win three of the six races at least, as even drawing level would have handed the title to Watson who was ahead on a countback of second place finishes.

But with Oertel failing in his bid to claim the treble, and clinching just the lone win at Al Ain, Watson reigned supreme. It finished with Watson 40, Oertel 39.

The title has added significance for Watson's yard who were out of action for seven meetings during the season following a temporary ban imposed on account of some of his staffers testing positive for Covid-19.

It is a magnificent achievement for Watson, and the American was quick to thank everyone that played their part.

"I think everyone had a hard year right through the season, but I have a great team of people and some great support which helps and winning just feels great, but we couldn't have gone racing at times without the people that supported us and that feels superb," Watson told Gulf News.