Meydan is without a doubt the most important racetrack in the United Arab Emirates and is truly a jewel in the crown of Dubai. Each year the competition gets more and more fierce as Meydan racecourse draws champion horses from further and further afield. After two quieter years in 2020 and 2021, this year’s racing has truly come back with a bang. There have been surprise winners, tough titans of the track going head to head and more prize money than ever before. Here are some of the biggest and most exciting racing recaps of this year.
Dubai Gold Cup
The Dubai Gold Cup is always a highlight of the flat racing calendar and this year was certainly no different. The race has been run since 2012 and since 2014 has been run at the Group 2 level, always over a distance of two miles. This longer distance makes it a real test of endurance for horses, one of the longest in the flat racing world. After Subjectivist’s record breaking performance in 2021, some were expecting him to be back with another win, yet 2022 saw the crown go to Stay Foolish, owned by Shadai Racehorse and trained by Yoshito Yahagi. This trainer is well-renowned in Japan and has trained many Group 1 winners, but welcoming home Stay Foolish in a tense battle won by just half a length will undoubtedly be one of the proudest moments of 2022 for this trainer. Stay Foolish was far from the favourite to win this competitive race, not least because he’d not won a race since 2018 and only then had won just one Grade 2 race over a mile and three furlongs. Seeing a seven-year-old achieve an absolute career best is fantastic and it remains to be seen whether Yahagi will be bringing Stay Foolish out for another season.
Dubai World Cup
The Dubai World Cup is the uncontested richest race in the horse racing calendar and has been since 2019 when the prize money was increased to an incredible $12 million. It’s always held on the last Saturday of March and is run over a distance of around 10 furlongs. The race is a Group 1 race and is open to horses of 4 years and over from the Northern Hemisphere and 3 years and over from the Southern. This year was a particularly exciting running of the race as Frankie Dettori had his sights firmly set on his fourth win of the race, which would tie him for the top spot as the jockey who had won this race the most times. Amazingly, Country Grammer made this dream come true for him, as the plucky horse romped home as winner of the Dubai World Cup by almost two lengths. Trainer Bob Baffert hadn’t had a winner of the race since 2001 with Captain Steve, who made it past the post in an almost record breaking time. At only five years old, Country Grammer could still have some seriously big races under his belt, so we’re excited to see what is planned next for this promising horse.
Dubai Golden Shaheen
With a prize of $2 million, the Dubai Golden Shaheen always draws crowds and this year was no different. The race is run over a distance of just six furlongs, making it one of the shortest at Meydan. Only the best sprinters can win and this year the title went to the oldest winner ever, Switzerland, at eight years old. This horse has had four changes of trainer in its career, but it seems as though Bhupat Seemar has really worked out how to make this brown gelding tick. Despite having set off at a price of around 20/1, Switzerland stormed home to take home the handsome prize for his connections.
Although the racing season is finished for the 2021/22 year, there are plenty of us who are excited for what’s to come in the 2022/23 season. If you’re planning on placing a bet on any of the action from Meydan then to ensure that you receive the best odds and take advantage of the most competitive bonuses, it’s worth checking out these betting sites reviews. SBO has created a guide to the best sites and have paid painstaking attention to the factors that matter most to bettors, including bonuses and odds as just mentioned, but also whether it’s possible to cash in during the race and the types of deposit methods that are available.
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