All eyes on Canvassed upon return from year-long break

Trainer Doug Watson says Shamardal gelding in great form heading into Jebel Ali race

Dubai, United Arab Emirates - October 24, 2019: Trainer Doug Watson watches from the sidelines on the opening meeting of the new season. Thursday the 24th of October 2019. Meydan Racecourse, Dubai. Chris Whiteoak / The National
Race card

1.30pm: Handicap (PA) Dh 50,000 (Dirt) 1,400m

2pm: Handicap (TB) Dh 84,000 (D) 1,400m

2.30pm: Maiden (TB) Dh 60,000 (D) 1,200m

3pm: Conditions (TB) Dh 100,000 (D) 1.950m

3.30pm: Handicap (TB) Dh 76,000 (D) 1,800m

4pm: Maiden (TB) Dh 60,000 (D) 1,600m

4.30pm: Handicap (TB) Dh 68,000 (D) 1,000m

Dubai World Cup Carnival aspirant Canvassed will be one of the runners in the spotlight on his reappearance in Jebel Ali’s fourth race meeting on Friday.

The five-year-old Shamardal gelding, trained by Doug Watson for Dubai’s Sheikh Mohammed Obaid, returns from a 386-day break for the 1,400-metre distance.

A winner of two races on the all-weather when trained in Britain by Roger Varian, Canvassed disappointed on his local and dirt debut over the 1,600m trip at Meydan last November.

“He is a horse we are really looking forward to getting back on the track because we have always really liked him,” Watson said on Canvassed’s return to action after spending the summer in Dubai.

“Obviously he has not been straightforward and we could not get him back out last season, but he is in great form now and should run a big race.”

Stable jockey Pat Dobbs retains the ride on Canvassed who has to concede weight all round in the 16-runner field in his first start at Jebel Ali.

Another holding carnival claims is Satish Seemar’s Riflescope and the choice of stable jockey Richard Mullen from the four runners from the Zabeel Stables.

The Raven’s Pass gelding comes into the race with two runs already under his belt, one over the track and trip when runner up behind Mystique Moon on October 30.

Dane O’Neill rides Moqtarreb, one of the five entries for his main employer Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid.

The Kingman gelding trained by Ali Rashid Al Raihe was runner up to Mystery Land on his reappearance over the course and distance, and is another of note in the field.

The feature event in the seven-race mixed card is the 1,950m conditions that has drawn seven runners.

Erwan Charpy, who is yet to get off the mark for the season has three entered in the race.

Blue Sovereign is the choice of stable jockey Clement Lecouvre while Fabrice Veron partners Cranesbill and King’s Shadow under the UAE champion jockey Tadhg O’Shea.

“Blue Sovereign has been in consistent form and we want to try him back at Jebel Ali,” Charpy said.

“He never liked before, now that they have improved the surface. Cranesbill likes it there and, if he does not get too far back early on, should be right there and we think King’s Shadow will appreciate conditions, so we hope we have three live chances.”

Al Raihe’s Karnavaal, the choice of O’Neill from the two Sheikh Hamdan owned runners in the race. Watson’s Maqadeer is the other with Dobbs in the saddle.

Completing the field are Seemar’s Lady Snazz with Mullen atop and Fernando Jara on board Ahmad bin Harmash’s Woodditton.

Race card

1.30pm: Handicap (PA) Dh 50,000 (Dirt) 1,400m

2pm: Handicap (TB) Dh 84,000 (D) 1,400m

2.30pm: Maiden (TB) Dh 60,000 (D) 1,200m

3pm: Conditions (TB) Dh 100,000 (D) 1.950m

3.30pm: Handicap (TB) Dh 76,000 (D) 1,800m

4pm: Maiden (TB) Dh 60,000 (D) 1,600m

4.30pm: Handicap (TB) Dh 68,000 (D) 1,000m

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