Bhupat Seemar grateful for 'beautiful' memories as Zabeel Stables relocates to Meydan

Dubai World Cup victory provides ultimate send-off for two-time UAE champion trainer

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After more than three decades of success, Zabeel Stables are moving to a new location at Meydan.

Overlooking the Dubai skyline, with landmarks such as the world's tallest building the Burj Khalifa in the background, Zabeel offered a unique experience the moment you arrived, away from the hustle and bustle of the city.

While the operations are moving to a new location, Zabeel is a special place that will remain close to trainer Bhupat Seemar's heart.

“To leave Zabeel with a Dubai World Cup as well as both the trainers' and jockeys' championship was the crowning glory. It was a good send-off and it was beautiful. I have spent 21 memorable years [there] but life has to move on,” Seemar said in an exclusive interview with The National.

Seemar is grateful to Dubai Racing Club for “doing a wonderful job” on the facility at Meydan, with even better amenities than they had at Zabeel.

“They are still putting in everything that we've had in Zabeel. So, there's a lot of work going on there. It’s going to be a wonderful facility. Green Stable is the biggest stable at Meydan,” he said.

“We have a large number of horses and that’s the most suitable stable. I'm thankful they've offered this to us.”

Seemar landed the $12 million Dubai World Cup with Laurel River in the silks of Juddmonte Farms.

He completed a Group 1 double with that win following Tuz's triumph in the $2 million Dubai Golden Shaheen earlier in the evening.

Seemar rounded off the season with a second UAE Trainers' Championship title just three years after he received his trainer’s licence.

It was an incredible season for him. The Dubai World Cup has made Seemar an international star; he served his apprenticeship as an assistant to his uncle Satish Seemar for over 18 years, having spent six years in the USA with four-time Dubai World Cup winner Bob Baffert.

Zabeel also saw stable jockey Tadhg O’Shea clinch a record-extending 12th UAE championship after riding both Seemar's Group 1 winners on Dubai World Cup night.

Success at the Dubai World Cup and in the trainers' championship last week, however, hasn’t quite sunk in yet.

“When I wake up in the morning, I pinch myself and ask if I am the World Cup-winning trainer. These things don't happen that often. So, yeah, I have to say it is a super special season,” Seemar added.

“To win the Dubai World Cup and completing a Group 1 double on the night, and then round off the season with the trainers' championship was really, really amazing.”

Seemar's work for next season is already gathering steam with a busy schedule shopping for new bloodstocks.

“We went to the horse sale in Dubai and sold a few,” he said. “I'm going to do some shopping from April 14. I'm going to the UK for the Craven Sale. I’ll touch base and fly to Deauville in France and from there will fly to the USA and Ireland.

“There’s going to be plenty of shopping this summer, busier than last season. Actually, I've been quite busy in the summer in the last two years anyway. I need to restock to fire again for the next season.”

Seemar is yet to discuss plans for his Dubai World Cup hero Laurel River with the owners.

“At the moment, we are all enjoying the moment. We still have another two, three weeks to think about what we're going to do,” Seemar said.

“They were very supportive. They know their pedigrees in and out. They told me there's a lot of stamina in his bottom side, from the female side of his pedigree. Obviously they would have discussed it with the owners and they gave it the go ahead.

“I'm very thankful to all these clients from all over the world, and especially Juddmonte, who had the faith in me and the trust to train their horse; the rest of the clients who have horses with us on the field to make us the champion trainer and a very hard-working staff who make everything possible.”

Updated: April 12, 2024, 6:17 AM