Sunday, January 6, 2002
SAKHEE HEADS POWERFUL MAKTOUM CHALLENGE ENTRY
Prix de l¹Arc de Triomphe winner Sakhee heads a powerful contingent of horses nominated by Godolphin for the Maktoum Challenge Series as the countdown to the Dubai World Cup meeting intensifies.
The Emirates Racing Association has received a total of 56 nominations for the three race Series and also included among the Godolphin nomination are Noverre, Street Cry, E Dubai, Tobougg and State Shinto, fourth behind Captain Steve in last year’s Dubai World Cup.
Other notables include the Marcus Tregoning-trained Nayef, War Blade prepared by Andreas Schutz as well as Adilabad and Bonnard from Joe Hennessy in Saudi Arabia.
The Maktoum Challenge is a three race Series run over 1,600m, 1,800m and 2,000m all on dirt at Nad Al Sheba, Dubai, with the first round on January 17 before the second and third rounds on February 7 and 28 respectively.
Points are allocated according to finishing positions with the overall winner being the horse that has accumulated the most points over the three races, provided it has run in more than one of the races.
Al Quoz Stables has won every Series except one, that when Paddy Rudkin and Paul Eddery combined with Wathik, that horse outpointing Cape Cross and Fly To The Stars in 1997/1998.
Horses such as Cezanne, Halling and Tamayaz are previous winners of the Series.
In recent season trainer Saeed bin Suroor has used the three races for his Dubai World Cup hopefuls, in 2000 the third round was won by Dubai Millennium while last year’s three races were won by China Visit, Best Of The Bests and Hightori.
Both China Visit and Best Of The Bests are also included in this season’s nominations.
Horses nominated for Sheikh Maktoum bin Rashid Challenge for Thoroughbreds are:-
All The Way
Best Of The Bests
Dubai To Dubai
Dubai Two Thousand
LEVY BOARD LOAN ENABLES
RIPON SCREEN FIRST
The Horserace Betting Levy Board has agreed to make a £125,000 interest-free loan to Ripon racecourse which will go towards the purchase of a new large-scale video screen at the Yorkshire course.
Ripon will be the first of Britain’s 59 racecourses to own such a screen and guarantee its patrons the facility every raceday.
Ripon wants to ensure that racegoers can view the racing action via a large screen at all its 14 racing days during 2002 and racecourse officials have decided that the most cost-effective option is to purchase an ex-demonstration screen which is 30 metres square, rather than hiring one.
It will be possible to dismantle the new screen and therefore it is capable of being hired out to other sporting venues outside the Flat racing season at Ripon which starts on April 3 and ends on August 31 next year.
Screenco will act as agents and operators for the racecourse in hiring the screen out.
The benefits to Ripon of the screen include increased/retained attendance levels, higher Tote turnover, additional revenue from advertising on the screen, a selling point for sponsorship packages and hire fees outside of the Flat racing season.
The screen will be installed within the old number-board building, which is situated in the centre of the course opposite the grandstand. Some structural changes to the building will be required but its position is ideal for viewing from the Tattersalls and Club Enclosures.
James Hutchinson, the Clerk of the Course at Ripon, said: “We are very grateful to the Levy Board for this loan towards our exciting screen project at Ripon and we have always wanted to utilise the old number-board building.
“This screen will help us to ensure that every day’s racing at Ripon is even more enjoyable and will also provide revenue for the racecourse outside the Flat season.”
For old articles (from 1st March 2000) go to the Newslink