Mouheeb | Dubai Racing Club Sheikh Ahmed Al Maktoum's Mouheeb (Flatter), who extended his record to two wins from three starts when taking last week's G3 UAE 2000 Guineas by a neck, will decline an invitation to the $1.5-million Saudi Derby on Feb. 20 and train up to the G2 UAE Derby, worth $750,000, at Meydan on Dubai World Cup night on Mar. 27. “He will head directly to the UAE Derby and miss the Saudi Derby,” Mohamed Saeed Al Shahi, racing manager for Sheikh Ahmed, told Tamarkuz Media. “He came out of the race well, but His Highness, myself and [trainer] Nicholas [Bachalard] felt he had two tough races and we need to give him a bit more time with the UAE Derby being his main target.” Mouheeb broke his maiden at first asking at Jebel Ali on Dec. 18 before missing by a head when second to Rebel's Romance (Ire) (Dubawi Ire) in the UAE 2000 Guineas Trial on Jan. 14. Bachalard added, “We thought he had room to progress between his races and he did. I wasn't sure how much, but he definitely has improved with every run. We think he can handle the added distance in the Derby. We were strongly considering the Saudi Derby, but we just felt that the race took too much out of him and we'll wait.” Not a subscriber? Click here to sign up for the daily PDF or alerts. This story was posted in Shared News Europe, Top News Europe and tagged Flatter, Mouheeb, Nicolas Bachalard, Saudi Derby, Sheikh Ahmed Al Maktoum, UAE Derby.
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