Bhupat Seemar saddled two winners when standing in for the suspended Zabeel Stables trainer Satish Seemar at Meydan’s second meeting of the season on Thursday.
Kafoo, under stable jockey Tadhg O’Shea, made a winning debut by taking the 1,600-metre maiden for three year olds, before Sen Kirrane completed the double on board Imperial Empire half an hour later.
O’Shea settled Kafoo behind Beijing Billy before moving on to the lead on the home stretch to win ahead of stable companion Al Maroom by six and-a-half lengths.
“He is a lovely horse and one we have always really liked,” Bhupath said of the $250,000 purchase. “We thought he would run well and were very hopeful but it is always a relief when they deliver.”
Imperial Empire made it start to finish to come home three and-a-half lengths in front of Tabarrak in the handicap run over the 1,400m distance.
“That’s my first winner this season which is a relief and the yard and these owners have been good supporters of mine for which I am very grateful,” Kirrane said of the Dubawi gelding.
Doug Watson racked up a treble on the night, while Bahraini trainer Fawzi Nass made a successful start with his first Purebred Arabian runner RB Rich Lyke Me in the UAE.
RB Rich Lyke Me, under Adrie de Vries, was in a class of his own when winning the Group 2 Baniyas by 14 lengths ahead of Omani raider RB Kinsman.
“Fawzi had been looking for a good Purebred Arabian for Meydan and this is one of two he has bought,” De Vries said. “He had been going very well at home so we came here expecting a big run and he has produced that. He will stay further as well so is a nice addition.”
Pat Dobbs landed the second race on the card with Taking Names for the first of three winners for Watson.
Sam Hitchcott, atop Faithful Warrior, made all for his second and George Buckell completed the treble on debutant Mulfit.
“We gelded (Faithful Warrior) and he has thrived over the summer so we were hopeful coming here tonight and that was a very pleasing return to action,” Watson said. “Hopefully he can build on this and Mnasek (in second) ran a nice race under a big race against the boys so we are very pleased with both.
“He had two trials and had learned from that and shot out the gates tonight which was pleasing. He had been working well and, hopefully, is a horse with a future.”
The American later completed a treble, snaring the Dubai Ambulance, a 2000m handicap, with seasonal debutant Mulfit, partnered to a comfortable victory by George Buckell.
It was just a second career success for Mulfit, whose previous visit to the winner’s enclosure was after a 1600m success on the Meydan dirt track in November 2019. That was just his second appearance for Watson and he has only run five times since.
Baniyas – Group 2 (PA) Dh97,500 (Dirt) 1,400m
Winner: RB Rich Lyke Me, Adrie de Vries (jockey), Fawzi Nass (trainer)
Maiden (TB) Dh82,500 (D) 1,200m
Winner: Taking Names, Pat Dobbs, Doug Watson
Maiden (TB) Dh82,500 (D) 1,600m
Winner: Kafoo, Tadhg O’Shea, Bhupath Seemar
Handicap (TB) Dh87,500 (D) 1,400m
Winner: Imperila Empire, Sean Kirrane, Bhupath Seemar
Rated Conditions (TB) Dh95,000 (D) 1,400m
Winner: Faithful Soldier, Sam Hitchcock, Doug Watson
Handicap (TB) Dh87,500 (D) 2,000m
Winner: Mulfit, George Buckell, Doug Watson
Handicap (TB) Dh92,500 (D) 1,200m
Winner: Vasari, Antonio Fresu, Musabah Al Muhairi