Australian sprinter Faatinah has begun his overseas campaign in style with victory at Meydan in Dubai.
Trained by Lindsay Park, Faatinah is raced by Sheikh Hamdan’s Shadwell operation and is on a path to the Group O1 Al Quoz Sprint at the end of March.
Ridden by Englishman Jim Crowley in Thursday night’s 1200m-race, Faatinah beat Godolphin horse Baccarat trained by Charlie Appleby by a neck.
A dual Group Two winner, Faatinah was runner-up to stablemate Sheidel in last year’s Group One Oakleigh Plate.
Owned by Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Faatinah was never headed in the 1200m turf handicap, the Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi World Class Healthcare Cup.
Quickly away under Jim Crowley, they had the majority of their 12 rivals in trouble from a long way out. Only Baccarat, who missed the break, was able to throw down any kind of challenge for Godolphin, Appleby and James Doyle.
Try as he might, Doyle and Baccarat never really looked likely to snatch the prize and Crowley, riding for David Hayes, said: “He hit the lids so well, I was in front perhaps on sufferance, but nobody else wanted to go on, so I was happy to.
“He has bowled along really well but, also, has had a good look around under the lights which is a new experience for him. It was a very good performance, giving weight away to all the others and he will improve for it after two months-plus off.”
Faatinah wins in Dubai
Australian-trained sprinter Faatinah does just enough to thwart Baccarat in the Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi World Class Healthcare Cup pic.twitter.com/Cjz2OpuXns
— Meydan Racing (@DRC_Meydan) January 18, 2018