Prince Bishop wins Dubai World Cup, California Chrome 2nd
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) Prince Bishop pulled away from favorite California Chrome on the home straight and won the $10 million Dubai World Cup by 2 lengths at Meydan Racecourse on Saturday.
Starting from the inside post, jockey William Buick rode Prince Bishop to his first victory on dirt. It was the fourth attempt for the 8-year-old horse in the world's richest race.
Buick said it would take some time to gather his thoughts after winning the world's richest horse race.
"I can't express what I am feeling right now," he said. "It's very surreal. We were detached last, but ended up traveling very well in the last turn.
"I didn't look back, but I imagine we won well because I could hear the commentator. I feel a bit numb at the moment, but I'm sure when I get home and relax it will sink in."
Prince Bishop was bred in Ireland, but has been trained by Saeed bin Suroor in the Emirates. Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner California Chrome was no match for Prince Bishop when the horse blew past him over the new dirt surface. Chrome's trainer Art Sherman was gracious in defeat.
"He tried every inch of the way," Sherman said. "There's nothing wrong with finishing second."
Jockey Victor Espinoza said California Chrome "ran awesome."
The Horse of the Year has not won on dirt since the Preakness. The 4-year-old colt was running second behind Hokko Tarumae going into the final leg, but could not keep pace when Prince Bishop made his move.
"It seemed like the other horses were bumping me around in there on the first turn and then on the far turn," Espinoza said. "He kind of lost his stride a little bit on the (home) turn because the horse on the inside (Hokko Tarumae) pushed me out. That kind of took some of the air out of his lungs."
Lea finished third for Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott, who won the first World Cup with Cigar in 1996.
Earlier, Christophe Soumillon rode Dolniya to victory in the $6 million Dubai Sheema Classic, having earlier won the $2 million UAE Derby atop Mubtaahij, the 4-year-old Irish-bred colt.
Mubtaahji, trained by a South African and ridden by a Frenchman, is likely headed next to the Kentucky Derby in Louisville, Kentucky, on May 2, trainer Mike de Kock said.
"We'll be there," de Kock said.
Mubtaahij, sent off as the favorite, followed pace-setters Golden Barrows and Tap That before jockey Soumillon took off with his colt and blew away the competition with an eight-length victory.
The horse is owned by Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Maktoum, nephew of Godolphin owner Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.
Solow, sired by 1997 Dubai World Cup winner Singspiel, won the $6 million Dubai Turf by 4 1/4 lengths over favorite The Grey Gatsby.
"This was a big test, as it was his first Group 1 race," Solow trainer Freddy Head said. "I couldn't have had him better, and he showed what a good horse he is. Maxime Guyon rode him perfectly, very quiet, very cool."
Espinoza claimed a win for the United States aboard Secret Circle in the $2 million Dubai Golden Shaheen, while Sole Power beat Peniaphobia to take the $1 million Al Quoz Sprint.
Brown Panther, owned by former Liverpool and Real Madrid footballer Michael Owen, comfortably won the Dubai Gold Cup, Tamarkuz took the $1 million Godolphin Mile, and Manark triumphed in the $6 million Dubai Kahayla Classic.