For a second year, World Pool was in action at Meydan for Dubai Super Saturday, where both G1 contests on the card saw a return to the winners’ enclosure for some familiar faces.
ALFAREEQ was a surprise winner of the G1 Jebel Hatta in 2022, and managed to spring another surprise 12 months on, displaying a tenacious attitude to get the better of his rivals and land the prize once again for owner Shadwell, trainer Musabbeh Al Mheiri and jockey Dane O’Neill.
The most valuable race on the card was the G1 Al Maktoum Challenge R3, which saw another returning champion in the form of SALUTE THE SOLDIER, who had triumphed in the same contest in 2021.
Bhupat Seemar’s runner looked an unlikely winner rounding the home turn when driven around rivals by rider Adrie de Vries and took a moment to hit top gear once into the straight, but entering the final 200m stayed on powerfully to win going away by two lengths.
It was a fine performance from the eight-year-old to get the better of his younger rivals and was deemed worthy of being awarded World Pool Moment of the Day, with SALUTE THE SOLDIER’s groom Bheekh Singh receiving a cheque for HK$40,000.
On hearing the news, Singh said: "I'm delighted! This is a big amount of money for me and it will help with a lot of things. We work so hard, we love our horses and it's great that the World Pool is rewarding that.
"Salute The Soldier is a legend. I've been his groom since 2019 and hopefully we have many more big days ahead."
He now has the chance to win a VIP trip to Hong Kong if selected as the World Pool Moment of the Year.
Derek and Killian Hennessy, groom and work rider for Luxembourg, speak to Tom Stanley after picking up their World Pool Moment of the Day prize.