Group One Dubai Sheema Classic Guide 2023

Joe Glayshier | @joeglayshier

Meydan - March 25 2023
Meydan 16:00
7(6)
Christophe-Patrice Lemaire

Equinox

J:
 
Christophe-Patrice Lemaire
T:
 
Tetsuya Kimura
Age: 4
Weight: 8-13
OR: 125
Days: 90

Four-year-old colt who arrives here as the Japanese Horse of the Year following success in the Group One Tenno Sho and the Group One Arima Kinen in October and December respectively. Christophe Lemaire rides again here.

Trainer Tetsuya Kimura speaks very highly of this horse and the colt looks set for another big run after six career starts and is a leading player.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
26/11/23TOK12GF9-21
29/10/23TOK10GF9-21
25/06/23HAN11GF9-21
25/03/23MEY12Gd8-131
25/12/22NAK12.5GF8-91
Meydan - March 25 2023
Meydan 16:00
3(10)
William Buick

Rebel's Romance

J:
 
William Buick
T:
 
Charlie Appleby
Age: 5
Weight: 9-0
OR: 121
Days: 140

Top class gelding for Charlie Appleby who has won his last five races, including success at Newmarket, Goodwood and Keeneland. The last two victories have come in group three (Goodwood) and grade one (Keeneland) contests, which has been impressive.

Wouldn’t be surprising to see him run well again for a top yard, and he’s clearly in good form for Appleby. William Buick takes the reigns.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
13/12/23KEM12St/Slw9-81
07/10/23BBA12Y9-04
30/07/23SAR11Gd8-10UR
25/03/23MEY12Gd9-07
05/11/22KEE12Fm9-01
Meydan - March 25 2023
Meydan 16:00
2(8)
Jim Crowley

Mostahdaf

J:
 
Jim Crowley
T:
 
John & Thady Gosden
Age: 5
Weight: 9-0
OR: 121
Days: 28

Five-year-old for John and Thady Gosden who is a winner of a number of grouped company races, most recently winning the September Stakes at Kempton over 1m 3f, beating favourite Dubai Honour by just under three lengths. Was well beaten in the Group One Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe at ParisLongchamp in October at 40/1 before winning Group Three Neom Turf Cup last time out four weeks ago.

Should be able to figure in the hunt for victory if following that run up here.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
23/08/23YOR10.5GF9-81
21/06/23ASC10Gd9-21
25/03/23MEY12Gd9-04
25/02/23JAN10.5GF9-01
02/10/22LON12VSft9-520
Meydan - March 25 2023
Meydan 16:00
8(1)
Ryan Moore

Westover

J:
 
Ryan Moore
T:
 
Ralph Beckett
Age: 4
Weight: 8-13
OR: 119
Days: 174

Colt for Ralph Beckett who looks able to be in the mix and boasts wins at the likes of Sandown and Curragh in his career so far. Group one success at Curragh has to be the highlight, beating Piz Badile by seven lengths to land the Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby over 1m 4f. Followed that run with a disappointing fifth of six in another group one contest before sixth of 20 in the Group One Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe at ParisLongchamp in October last year.

That represented promise for a good run here and he can be in the mix.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
29/07/23ASC12GS9-92
08/07/23SAI12GS9-31
02/06/23EPS12GF9-22
25/03/23MEY12Gd8-132
02/10/22LON12VSft8-136
Meydan - March 25 2023
Meydan 16:00
6(7)
Cristian Demuro

Shahryar

J:
 
Cristian Demuro
T:
 
Hideaki Fujiwara
Age: 5
Weight: 9-0
OR: 120
Days: 118

Five-year-old who won this race last year, beating 7/2fav Yibir by a neck. Travelled to the UK to tackle Group One Prince of Wales’s Stakes at Royal Ascot in June last year, where he finished fourth to Grand Glory, Bay Bridge and State Of Rest.

Has since finished second in the Japan Cup in November and can be in the mix here having tasted success at Meydan 12 months ago.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
24/12/23NAK12.5GF9-25
04/11/23SNA12Fm9-03
20/08/23SAP10GF9-211
25/03/23MEY12Gd9-05
27/11/22TOK12GF9-02
Meydan - March 25 2023
Meydan 16:00
10(4)
Damian Lane

Win Marilyn

J:
 
Damian Lane
T:
 
Takahisa Tezuka
Age: 6
Weight: 8-9
OR: 115
Days: 104

Smart six-year-old mare who won Hong Kong Vase at Sha Tin in December, beating Botanik by just over a length in the ten-runner field over 1m 4f. Comes over from Japan having her first run at Meydan and despite being inexperienced here, shouldn’t be discounted.

Trainer Takahisa Tezuka sends her here for the Dubai Sheema Classic on the back of that success at Sha Tin and can give a good account of herself, even if not enough to claim victory.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
24/12/23NAK12.5GF8-117
04/11/23SNA10Fm8-124
24/09/23NAK11GF9-09
20/08/23SAP10GF8-119
25/03/23MEY12Gd8-96
Meydan - March 25 2023
Meydan 16:00
1(5)
Mickael Barzalona

Botanik

J:
 
Mickael Barzalona
T:
 
A Fabre
Age: 5
Weight: 9-0
OR: 116
Days: 21

Five-year-old gelding who goes off 116 here following third of five at Chantilly earlier this month which followed second in the Hong Kong Vase at Sha Tin in December, losing out to fellow runner Win Marilyn by just over a length.

More is needed here from the horse who won four times last year and must be respected in the form he’s in.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
04/03/23CHA9.5St9-33
11/12/22SHA12Gd9-02
01/10/22LON10VSft9-410
28/08/22DEA12.5Gd9-41
07/08/22DEA12.5GS9-51
Meydan - March 25 2023
Meydan 16:00
4(3)
Alberto Sanna

Russian Emperor

J:
 
Alberto Sanna
T:
 
Douglas Whyte
Age: 6
Weight: 9-0
OR: 115
Days: 21

Smart six-year-old who steps up in trip here having run at 1m 1f last time out here in the Jebel Hatta earlier this month, finishing fifth of 14, where Alfareeq claimed victory. Hasn’t managed to win here before but has won races at Royal Ascot and Sha Tin in his career so far.

May be a tough ask for the gelding in this type of company back up in trip.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
21/01/24SHA8Gd9-07
19/11/23SHA10GF9-28
15/10/23SHA8Gd9-110
28/05/23SHA12Gd9-01
07/05/23SHA12Sft9-96
Meydan - March 25 2023
Meydan 16:00
9(2)
Christophe Soumillon

Zagrey

J:
 
Christophe Soumillon
T:
 
Y Barberot
Age: 4
Weight: 8-13
OR: 113
Days: 36

Finished second to Nations Pride last time out in Group Three Dubai Millennium Stakes over 1m 2f last month before appearing in this contest. Previously also finished fourth here in January at group two level following wins in France at the likes of Chantilly and Nantes last year.

Much tougher test up in trip for the four-year-old and may struggle to make his presence known amongst these runners.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
08/07/23SAI12GS9-32
25/03/23MEY12Gd8-133
17/02/23MEY10Gd9-32
13/01/23MEY9Gd8-134
30/10/22CHA10Sft9-01
Meydan - March 25 2023
Meydan 16:00
5(9)
Frankie Dettori

Senor Toba

J:
 
Frankie Dettori
T:
 
C Fownes
Age: 5
Weight: 9-0
OR: 115
Days: 21

Outsider for this contest who is priced at around 50/1 following eighth here last time out earlier this month in the Group Two City Of Gold over 1m 4f. Landed a handicap just before that run last month at Sha Tin but had been inconsistent at that course before that run, winning twice in 2021/22.

Tougher test here for the six-year-old who is rated at 115 and has Frankie Dettori on board for this one. Can be dismissed.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
04/02/24SHA9Gd8-1313
10/12/23SHA12Gd9-05
19/11/23SHA10GF8-115
05/11/23SHA9Gd9-29
15/10/23SHA8Gd8-46