Mubtaahij romps in UAE Derby, trainer says on to Kentucky

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Mubtaahij took charge in the stretch and easily won the $2 million UAE Derby at Meydan Racecourse in one of Saturday’s undercard races at the Dubai World Cup.

The 3-year-old colt bred in Ireland, trained by a South African and ridden by a Frenchman, is likely headed next to the Kentucky Derby in Louisville, Kentucky on May 2, said trainer Mike de Kock.

Mubtaahij, sent off as the favorite in the field of 10, followed pace-setters Golden Barrows and Tap That before jockey Christophe Soumillon’s took off with his colt and blew away the competition with an eight-length victory.

The win was worth 100 Derby qualifying points for Mubtaahij, which puts him in the field for the Run for the Roses.

“This has given us a chance to get to the Kentucky Derby,” de Kock said. “We’ll be there.”

The horse is owned by Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Maktoum, nephew of Godolphin owner Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

Maftool was second and Golden Barows third.