UAE champion jockey Tadhg O’Shea was off to a flyer by riding the first winner of the season at Al Ain on Thursday.
The Irishman on board AF Nashrah led a 1-2, finishing ahead of AF Musannef, for trainer Ernst Oertel in the silks of UAR champion owner Khalid Khalifa Al Naboodah to stretch his record to 554 winners in the UAE.
The remaining six prizes, five for Purebred Arabians and one for the thoroughbreds, were shared by six different jockeys, trainers and owners on the night.
Khalifa Al Neyadi’s Jayide Al Boraq recording his sixth win in eight starts at the track provided the meeting's highlight.
The six-year-old by Burning Sand under Brazilian Bernardo Pinheiro got up in the final furlong to get the better of Ibrahim Al Hadhrami’s pair Al Mobher and Arif by one and-a-quarter and a quarter length respectively.
Now the action moves to Jebel Ali on Friday with a seven-card meeting for thoroughbreds.
Doug Watson sends out nine runners across four races. He has a trio entered in the third race with stable jockey Pat Dobbs electing to ride Mystique Moon, a winner over the trip and track last year.
Sam Hitchcock rides Fanaar and Adrie de Vries is atop course specialist Just A Penny.
“We tried Fanaar at Jebel Ali for his final run last season and he ran well when fourth in a good little race,” Watson said.
“With the summer on his back we hope he has fully acclimatised and can have a good season. We like him a lot.”
“Pat Dobbs was always likely to pick Mystique Moon, another horse we all really like. He has been training great and goes well fresh. If fit enough, he will run a big race.”
Speaking of his third entry, Watson added: “Just A Penny always needs his first run but this looks the ideal spot to get him going and we all know he loves Jebel Ali.”
O’Shea partners Satish Seemar’s Riflescope who chased home Mystique Moon in this race last year, and also runner-up behind High On Life in 2018.
Richard Mullen, Seemar’s stable jockey, has chosen to ride Ode To Autumn, a two-time winner over the course and distance.