Best bets for the Horse racing at Meydan Friday 17th February – The Dubai Carnival

I am fairly heavily concentrated on the Arabian Peninsula for the next couple of days with the final meeting of the Dubai Carnival, before we have Super Saturday and the Dubai World Cup in March, my main interest on Friday. It is a potentially tricky card for punters with a handful of handicap puzzles to solve and some pattern action but annoyingly with a couple of odds-on shots at the head of the market.

Best bets for the horse racing at Meydan

The first race of interest to me is the 7f handicap at 3.10 and I fancy one of the five Godolphin contenders. I tipped Silent Film over track and trip back in January on his seasonal reappearance when a fair fifth staying on late from perhaps too far back. As I said then the chestnut gelding appears to like it out in the middle-east, last year he won over this C&D and also took the 7f Al Sakhir Cup In Bahrain. He races off a mark of 100 again and breaks from stall two, both of which I see as positives, add in the fact William Buick is in the saddle and he looks set to find his way into the winners enclosure again. I am on at 11-4 BPG.

The 3.45 mile Jumeirah Fillies Guineas on the Turf looks to be about the two Godolphin owned fillies Mawj and Fairy Cross. Mawj surprised me by winning the Jumeirah Fillies Classic last time, I tipped Dream Of Love, and to my eyes she was a bit lucky. Dream Of Love was gaining with every yard up the straight as Mawj began to tread water a little, Buick for once having got it wrong and leaving her with too much to do. I doubt she will see out the mile. Fairy Cross was last seen at Goodwood winning the Group Three William Hill Prestige Fillies' Stakes over seven pretty easily; I tipped her. By Dubai out of the G.2 winning Devonshire there is every reason to believe there will be more to come from this filly yet and a mile should be fine for her. Mawj beat her over six-furlongs when she made debut at HQ back in May last year and she can gain revenge in this. I Also doubt Buick will let Mawj get too far in front of his mount again! I am on at 11-10 BPG. Charlie Appleby said this week “Fairy Cross has physically done well out in Dubai. This was an opportunity to get a run into her out here and she will definitely come on for the outing. We are hoping that she will have a busy campaign after this, so it’s a day out before heading back to Europe.”

We stay on the Turf track for the 1m1f Group Two Balanchine at 4.20. With The Moonlight bids to become the sixth Godolphin owned filly or mare to complete the Cape Verdi - Balanchine double in the same season and looks a good thing to do so. Her trainer, Charlie Appleby, is looking for a five-timer having trained the last four winners - if you're a fan of stats she looks a certainty! Unsurprisingly she is priced as such and long odds-on. The 1m2f Jumeirah Derby at 4.55, again on the Turf track, is another race with multiple Godolphin entries in it, one of which has an obvious chance. One Nation was flattered by the official distance he was beaten by my Derby ante-post punt Naval Power in January, the winner hardly broke out of a canter, but it was still a very good effort and a repeat would see him win this. From a nice draw in four he could lead every yard but is another that is odds-on and unbackable at the price.

Be lucky