By Christie DeBernardis
A pair of American runners have been added to the list of Dubai World Cup night contenders with Dabster (Curlin) pointing for the G1 Dubai World Cup and Promises Fulfilled (Shackleford) is likely for the G1 Dubai Golden Shaheen Mar. 30 at Meydan.
Dabster hails from the barn of Hall of Famer Bob Baffert, who already owns three wins in this event and finished second last year with West Coast (Flatter). His MGISW stablemate McKinzie (Street Sense) was also under consideration for the Meydan headliner, but will likely wait for the GI Santa Anita H. to be re-carded.
“Dabster is definitely going to the Dubai World Cup,” Baffert said. “McKinzie was on the fence. I think they’re going to re-card the [Santa Anita H.]. Everything went really smooth [with the works]. The track was in pristine shape.”
A two-time stakes winner, Dabster is multiple graded-stakes placed, including a third in the GII San Antonio S. Dec. 26 and was last seen finishing sixth in the GII San Marcos S. in Arcadia Feb. 9. He breezed a bullet six furlongs at Los Alamitos in 1:10.60 (1/11) Mar. 10.
Grade I-winning sprinter Promises Fulfilled is also very likely to make the journey to Meydan to make his 4-year-old debut in the Golden Shaheen.
“There are $2.5 million reasons to come back in that race,” trainer Dale Romans said. “I think the sprint is America’s race. I think the Americans will be the horses to beat there and I think he’ll be one of the horses to beat.”
Winning the GII Fountain of Youth S. in his seasonal bow last year, Promises Fulfilled captured the GIII Amsterdam S., GI H. Allen Jerkens S. and the GII Phoenix S. last term. He was fourth last time in the GI Breeders’ Cup Sprint Nov. 3.
“He’s a fast, fast horse, that’s the bottom line, nothing else really matters,” Romans said. “He came off the layoff and he ran huge in the Fountain of Youth last year. I thought about getting a prep into him [before the Golden Shaheen] and then I thought about that and I said we’ll just train right into it if we’re going to go.”