Sean Levey and Zayin Zyperion broke a three-year absence from the winners’ enclosure for owner-breeder Paul Simmons when they secured the Wathba Stallions Cup at Lingfield Park by a short head in a photo finish. One of five runners in the race for trainer Pete Hammersley, the six-year-old son of No Risk Al Maury headed Evermore Racing’s Kayack, with Steve Blackwell’s Aljawaaher two lengths away in third.
Levey commented: “That was very good, the horse travelled brilliantly throughout. He’s obviously an experienced type who knew exactly what he was doing. He didn’t pick up when I first asked him, he put his head up and thought about it for a stride or two, but he responded in the end, put his head down and ran to the line well. I’m delighted.”
Simmons was all smiles saying: “My last winner was three years ago with his half-brother Zayin Zachilles who I did so well with. Zyperion really deserved this win, he’s been placed in all his starts since he progressed to handicaps, he’s done nothing wrong. Kayack gave him a good race right to the line. Sean gave him a brilliant ride and brilliantly trained by Pete of course!”
Hammersley agreed saying: “Brilliant wasn’t it? Well deserved, we’re very pleased with him. It’s nice to get another winner on the board, we’ll have a look and see where we can go next with him.”
The mile and a quarter (0-55) handicap was the fourth Wathba Stallions Cup sponsored races run as part of The Arabian Racing Organisation (ARO) season. The race is held as part of the global HH Sheikh Mansoor bin Zayed Al Nahyan Racing Festival programme of races, with the Wathba Stallions Cup series aiming to promote the breeders of Arabian racehorses. It is supported by Wathba Stallions, the breeding arm in the UAE and France, of HH Sheikh Mansoor bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Presidential Affairs, who is also Chairman of the Emirates Arabian Horse Association.
Genny Haynes, ARO Commercial and Finance Director said: “ARO warmly congratulates Paul and Pete for their success today with Zayin Zyperion. It is very fitting that a race aiming to support the grassroots and the smaller-owner breeders was won with a homebred horse, with another in second.
“We are also extremely grateful for the continued support of the HH Sheikh Mansoor bin Zayed Al Nahyan Racing Festival, who have supported five Wathba Stallions Cups with us this season. Our thanks also go to the team at Lingfield Park and we look forward to our next race here on August 25th.”