February 2024


Newmarket trainer Marco Botti will have his first ever runner in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia on Saturday when last year’s Group 2 Yorkshire Cup Stakes winner GIAVELLOTTO lines up in the Group 3 Red Sea Turf Handicap on Saudi Cup night.

Botti moved to Britain from Italy in 2006 to set up his training operation and has since won races at the highest level in eight countries.

Speaking to Great British Racing International (GBRI), the trainer said:

“Giavellotto has done great. We were able to give him a nice break. I think he’s done really well over the winter. He looks stronger and has been training so well. We are actually delighted. He looks fit and ready to go.”

Botti has won Stakes races for owners from 10 countries, including the Franchini family who own Giavellotto. The prominent Italian owner-breeders race their horses under Scuderia La Tesa.

When asked about Giavellotto’s owners, Botti said:

“Mr Franchini and his daughter Francesca bred the horse. Giavellotto has been the best horse they had. Francesca follows the horse everywhere he goes and of course she will be in Saudi.

“They are based north of Italy, not far from Milan. They have about six horses with us in England and have been a great supporter, and lucky owners as well!”

When asked about travelling his horses internationally, Botti added:

“It’s fantastic to be able to travel with horses. We had success in Dubai, we had winners in America, and Saudi he is actually the first runner for us and we are really looking forward to it. It’s important and those are the kind of meetings I suppose our owners enjoy, just to be there and be part of it.”

Giavellotto will compete against two fellow British runners representing Team British Racing in the Red Sea Turf. ENEMY (GB), who came second in the race last year, will bid to go one better for trainer Ian Williams and Italian St Leger winner ROBERTO ESCOBARR will represent Mick Appleby’s yard.

Other British trainers who will be represented on Saturday during the Saudi Cup meeting include Andrew Balding, Tim Easterby, Richard Fahey, John & Thady Gosden, Eve Johnson Houghton and Daniel & Claire Kübler.

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