After landing The Saudi Cup in February, Japan once again signalled their dominance on the global stage by taking home the two most valuable prizes on Dubai World Cup night, with victory in the G1 Sheema Classic and G1 Dubai World Cup.
In the Sheema Classic, EQUINOX stunned racing fans around the world by demolishing his high-class opposition, which included five previous G1 winners, in effortless style.
Tetsuya Kimura’s four-year-old, ridden by Christophe Lemaire, won by three-and-a-half lengths without coming off the bridle, lowering the track record by a second in the process.
It was a truly remarkable performance that led many to proclaim the son of Kitasan Black the best horse in the world, and it would be hard to argue with him being chosen as the World Pool Moment of the Day.
Afterwards EQUINOX’s groom, Tomohiro Kusunoki, who was awarded the World Pool Moment of the Day prize of HK$40,000, said: “It’s a real honour to receive this prize and, of course, to be associated with a horse as great as Equinox.
“He is just unbelievable. He’s beyond anything I dreamed of, and he proved on the night that he is one of the most exciting horses in the world.”
A VIP trip to Hong Kong next year could also beckon, if EQUINOX is chosen as the World Pool Moment of the Year.
There was more success to come for Japan on the night as USHBA TESORO won the feature race, the Dubai World Cup.
In a contest run at a searching gallop from the moment the gates opened, others looked likelier winners at the top of the home straight, but the kickback-covered face of USHBA TESORO, who had been last early on, loomed up on the outside and stayed on best to win.
The Noboru Takagi-trained colt gave Japan a second victory in the Dubai World Cup, 12 years on from their first, and was a notable success for last season’s leading Japanese jockey Yuga Kawada.
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.