The Arabian Racing Organisation (ARO) looks forward to the Emirates Breeders (0-55) Handicap on Wednesday August 23rd which had to be rescheduled from Brighton on August 11 after adverse weather required the meeting to be abandoned. The £4,000 race to be run over a mile and a quarter will feature the same nine runners as had been declared previously.
Distance winner Heritage Valentino is one of four runners for the seasons leading trainer James Owen who will be partnered by Billy Loughnane. Fifth behind both Al-Hatab and Belle Angelique over an extended seven furlongs last time, he should be better suited by the greater stamina test. His brother, Heritage Vadel, joins him, but he’s seemed happier over even further, winning at Southwell last year over a mile and a half for Rhiain Ingram who is on board here. Owen has a policy of supporting his stable amateurs when they can do the weights and with Rhea Betts and Teagan Padgett both being able to claim their full seven pound allowance, they are a valuable addition to his team. They partner Victoria and Delicatesse, three-year-olds bred or part-bred by Owen, who are making their handicap debuts.
Bridgend based Steve Blackwell will be hoping his two-time winner last season, Aloof, can bounce back to form on Wednesday. He also likes to support young riders and has his two regular amateurs booked, Lewis Saunders who has upgraded to Aloof this season, whilst Matthew Lloyd Slater gets on the veteran schoolmaster, Aljawaaher.
At the bottom of the handicap will be the Peter Hammersley trained pair of Al-Hatab and Belle Angelique, both are maidens but ran with credit at Brighton last time. Al-Hatab is a full brother to a dual winner for the yard, including at this trip and will be partnered for the first time by Mohammed Tabti. Belle Angelique will be reunited with Georgie Dobie.
Completing the field is Kayack for another owner-breeder-trainer Jen Harris. The nine-year-old will be ridden by regular partner and leading amateur Serena Brotherton, for whom the gelding has been placed four times on the All Weather.
Genny Haynes, ARO Chief Executive Officer said, “ARO is delighted we were able to reschedule this race at short notice. We thank the Emirates Breeders for their support as this series is extremely important for our grassroots competitors, who we are also assisting through our ARO breeders’ scheme. The scheme gives a financial bonus to UK registered ARO breeders whose horses finish in the first three places of all our races, and all bar one of the runners in this race are eligible for the bonus.
“We also thank Rhys Flint of Racing Welfare who will be present to select the winner of the Best Turned Out award on Wednesday.”