Adrie de Vries hails 'special' Hameem after victory in Abu Dhabi
Al Hammadi-trained colt wins Listed Arabian Triple Crown Round-1 following late burst
Adrie de Vries hailed Hameem as a “special horse” after landing the Listed Arabian Triple Crown Round-1 to stretch his winning streak to five at Abu Dhabi on Sunday.
The Abdallah Al Hammadi-trained Valiant Boy colt produced an impressive turn of speed on the home stretch to come from second last in the 10-runner field and take the honours ahead of Eric Lemartinel’s Mujeeb under Fabrice Veron by a length and-a-quarter.
Ernst Oertel’s pair AF Al Thayer and AF Alajaj set the early pace and the latter under Tadhg O’Shea hit the front as they turned for home. Mujeeb then took over at the 200m mark before De Vries produced Hameem with a challenge.
“He was a little bit restless in the stalls and that’s what made him jump out bad today,” De Vries, who rode Hameem in four of his five victories, said.
“We settled a bit back than we wanted to at the early part of the race. But he’s a good horse and got out of trouble easily. He’s got that kick. He’s a very special horse.
“I was able to make space as he kicked, and he finished like a good horse. The one I was following [Mujeeb], I thought we could catch him. He’s got that turn of foot. Nothing to take away from the second horse but my horse had a bit more turn of foot.
“Like I said, he was a little bit late in getting out of the stalls and that made the job a little bit harder.”
Hameem completed a treble for Al Hammadi on the night after Bernardo Pinheiro took the opener on Tabet Al Reef and Pat Cosgrave brought home Blue Diamond in the next.
Omani trainer Ibrahim Al Hadhrami and the Polish champion jockey Szczepan Mazur combined to take the next two prizes with Shoja’A Muscat and Heros De Lagarde.
Musabah Al Muhairi and Antonio Fresu with Good Tidings took the concluding thoroughbred Handicap.
Published: February 7, 2021 08:08 PM