Gifts Of Gold Gives Godolphin Saudi Double


Gifts Of Gold | Coady Photography/VidHorse

There was little in Gifts Of Gold (Ire) (Invincible Spirit {Ire})'s recent form to suggest that a win against top marathoners was on the cards, but a surface switch and the addition of cheekpieces as well as a few furlongs proved just the tonic for the Saeed bin Suroor-trained 6-year-old gelding to score an upset victory in the $2.5-million 3000 metre Red Sea Turf H. in Saudi Arabia on Saturday. Settling about two lengths off the moderate early tempo set by the defending champ and Group 1-winning stayer Call The Wind (GB) (Frankel {GB}), Gifts Of Gold was kept off the fence by Pat Cosgrave as the field passed the stands for the first time. The dark bay dropped back slightly down the backstretch and was floated out further by Cosgrave on the run into the third and final bend, with Spanish Mission (Noble Mission {GB}) on terms with him on the rail and Secret Advisor (Fr) (Dubawi {Ire}) rallying to split them. Four-wide at the top of the straight as Call The Wind called it a day, Gifts Of Gold collared Making Miracles (GB) (Pivotal {GB}), who had inherited the lead from Call The Wind, at the 300 metre mark as Spanish Mission kicked on from his inside position and Secret Advisor continued to make up ground. Gifts Of Gold was never truly threatened once he made the front, however, staying on to win by 1 1/4 lengths from Spanish Mission, with Secret Advisor a neck back in third. Red Verdon (Lemon Drop Kid) grabbed fourth. The win marked a double for Godolphin, which had won the stc 1351 Turf Sprint a race earlier with Space Blues (Ire) (Dubawi {Ire}).

“This was the plan since January when racing started in Dubai,” said winning trainer Saeed bin Suroor. “I thought he would be the perfect horse. He's a big strong horse and he ran well. The pace of the race wasn't that fast and that suited him and he finished the race off really well.

“Pat is good jockey and he has won big races for us in Australia, England and Germany. We're happy. We will take him back to Dubai and maybe he will go for the [G2 Dubai] Gold Cup on Mar. 27]. I'm sure he will improve some more.”

Cosgrave added, “That was great. Hopefully we're not finished yet. He was 110 there in a handicap so you have to think he's a horse for the [G1] Melbourne Cup maybe next year. He relaxes good and he has that turn of foot which is perfect for Melbourne.”

Ryan Moore said of Spanish Mission, “He ran a nice race, you must be happy with that first run of the year.”

Gifts Of Gold made his Dubai Carnival debut last year, his best finish in four starts that campaign being a third in the Listed Dubai Racing Club Classic over a mile and a half. The bay dropped down to 2000 metres to win a Chelmsford handicap on Aug. 27, and was last of four in the G3 Legacy Cup S. He made his seasonal and dirt debut in the one-mile G2 Al Maktoum Challenge R1 on Jan. 21 and was last, beaten forty-plus lengths.

Pedigree Notes

A €280,000 purchase from the 2015 Goffs November Foal Sale-the same sale at which Godolphin purchased its four-time Group 1 champion Ghaiyyath (Ire) (Dubawi {Ire}) for €1.1-million-Gifts Of Gold is out of the unraced Sanna Bay (Ire) (Refuse To Bend {Ire}), who was already responsible for the listed-winning Dusky Queen (Ire) (Shamardal) and the multiple graded stakes-placed Achnaha (Ire) (Haatef). Sanna Bay is a half-sister to the G3 Sweet Solera S. winner Albabilia (Ire) (King's Best) and the Laurel Futurity third Brainy Benny (Ire) (Barathea {Ire}). She has a yearling filly by Kodiac (GB).


RED SEA TURF H. (Cond.), $2,500,000, King Abdulaziz, 2-20, 4yo/up, 3000mT, 3:14.24, gd to fm.
1-GIFTS OF GOLD (IRE), 128, g, 6, Invincible Spirit (Ire)-Sanna Bay (Ire), by Refuse To Bend (Ire). (€280,000 wnl '15 GOFNOV) O-Godolphin; B-Paul Hyland (Ire); T-Saeed bin Suroor. £1,094,890. Lifetime Record: SP-UAE, 13-4-3-1, £1,143,591. *1/2 to Dusky Queen (Ire) (Shamardal), SW-Eng, $157,962; and Achnaha (Ire) (Haatef), MGSP-US & GSP-Ire, $224,655.
2-Spanish Mission, 128, h, 5, Noble Mission (GB)-Limonar (Ire), by Street Cry (Ire). ($125,000 yrl '17 KEESEP; 60,000gns RNA 2yo '18 TATAPR) O-Team Valor LLC & Gary Barber; B-St Elias Stables LLC; T-Andrew Balding. £364,963.
3-Secret Advisor (Fr), 132, g, 7, Dubawi (Ire)-Sub Rose (Ire), by Galileo (Ire). O-Godolphin; B-CEA Haras de Saint Pair (Fr); T-Charlie Appleby.
Margins: 1 1/4, NK, 1. Also Ran: Red Verdon, Making Miracles (GB), Mildenberger (GB), Mirinaque (Arg), New Show (Ire), Prince Of Arran (GB), Mekong (GB), Call The Wind (GB), Barbados (Ire), Arctic Sound (GB).
Click for the Racing Post result. VIDEO.

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