Dubai World Cup day races - Glorious Noah to run in the Godolphin Mile
Trackwork at Meydan Racecourse
The Group 2 Godolphin Mile, the third race on the Saturday card at Meydan Racecourse has attracted a 14-member field, including Japan’s Glorious Noah, a consistent winner over dirt. Glorious Noah will break from the No. 5 post position.
The 28-year-old Shinichiro Kobayashi will take the reins of the 4-year-old dark bay colt in the $1-million Goldolphin Mile, run over 1,600 meters on the all-weather track. Glorious Noah is the Japan-bred son of Precise End out of the Jade Robbery mare Love Robbery. Though not a popular choice for the win, trainer Yoshito Yahagi is hopeful that the relaxed atmosphere surrounding their participation will help push his colt toward a bright run.
Japan has had success in the Mile before, with a win by Utopia in 2006. Yutaka Take was the winning jockey, Kojiro Hashiguchi the winning trainer. It was the only win for Japan since the race's inauguration in 1994, when it was named the Nad Al Sheba Mile. Lend A Hand, winner in 1999, holds the speed record at 1 minute 34.91 seconds.
The star of this year’s Godolphin Mile field is surely Desert Party, a Kentucky-bred colt and one of three runners racing for Sheikh Mohammed. Desert Party is coming off a 1 1/4-length win March 3 in the UAE. It was his first race back after an unsuccessful run in last year's Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs. Following his Derby bid, Desert Party, the son of 2002 Dubai World Cup winner Street Cry, had undergone surgery to remove a bone chip. The colt is paired with Lanfranco Frankie Dettori for the race and breaks from the No. 11 slot.
Glorious Noah, one of four Japan horses racing on the Saturday, March 27 card at Meydan Racecourse, is one of the two horses that are being ridden by Japanese riders. For Kobayashi it is a honor indeed.
Glorious Noah has raced primarily over dirt, with all his wins on dirt. His first time out of Japan, it will be his first time racing on a synthetic track, but work leading up the race has indicated he enjoys the surface. Distance-wise, Glorious Noah has been successful both at the mile and over 1,400 meters, with a win and a second-place finish in Group 3 races, the 1,400-meter Negishi Stakes Jan. 31 at Tokyo and the 1,600-metter Unicorn Stakes last June also at Tokyo.
Glorious Noah is coming off a fifth-place finish in the 1,600-meter February Stakes, a Japan Group 1 held Feb. 21 at Tokyo. Though he faded in the stretch, the level of runners was considerably high this year.
On Tuesday, Glorious Noah trained on the Tapeta track under Kobayashi, who pushed him hard from 4 furlongs for a time of 52 seconds with an 11.9-second wrapup. "He likes the synthetic surface just as Mr. Yahagi thought he would," Kobayashi said after the run. "He doesn't have the power necessarily for deep dirt. I may be wrong but he feels just right to me," Kobayashi said modestly. Kobayashi added that he liked the No. 5 draw and looked forward to a driving, ground-gaining finish.
Trainer Yahagi was satisfied with his charge's work, saying the colt’s movement had looked good for the entire duration of his work, which is not always the case. Yahagi said the colt was eating well and all was going to plan. “He’s not a horse that loses weight in transport,” Yahagi said. “I’d have to say he’s doing well, even better than when he’s in Japan. On Monday during schooling, he was a bit agitated,” Yahagi admitted, “but because of that I am actually a bit relieved.”
“His work today went well. He was concentrated and moving well. Sometimes after a blowout, his gait becomes a bit irregular but not this time.” Yahagi said he planned to give the colt a swim, then only light exercise for the rest of the week. “I think Glorious Noah is in a good position, with the pressure off,” Yahagi said. “I hope for the other members of the Japan team he can give us a good showing.”
Glorious Noah did work lightly at the gallop for one lap over the all-weather track on Thursday under jockey Kobayashi. Yahagi said, "He's holding his condition, which is the most important thing. On the other hand, we have to be careful that he's not too relaxed." Yahagi said he planned to take the colt out for a bit of a lengthier, yet easy, run on Friday as well.
Owned by Yoko Takano, Glorious Noah was bred at Samekawa Bokujo on the northern Japan island of Hokkaido. He has an overall career record of 4 wins and 1 second in 9 starts and has earned over 100 million yen for his owner.
The Godolphin Mile is scheduled to be run shortly before 6 p.m. local time, 11 p.m. Saturday, March 27, Japan time.
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