February 2023



Team British Racing struck early at the 2023 renewal of The Saudi Cup on Saturday 25th February, with the John and Thady Gosden trained MOSTAHDAF producing a superb performance to leave his rivals for dust in the Group 3 NEOM Turf Cup.

The five-year-old son of FRANKEL (GB), who carries the silks of Sheikha Hissa Hamdan Al Maktoum’s Shadwell Estate Company Ltd and was bred by the Shadwell operation under the direction of the late Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum, travelled kindly throughout the race under retained rider Jim Crowley, kicking well clear in the closing stages to register a seven length victory.

Reflecting on the result with presenter Oli Bell, John Gosden said:

“He did it perfectly. He had a nice draw and Jim used it. The track is quick, and I think if you’re handy and you’ve got Mikael Barzalona in front measuring the fractions, that’s where you want to be handy, and then he kicked clear well. A stunningly good performance.

“Sheikha Hissa has done wonderfully to keep his [Sheikh Hamdan’s] horses in training and to have her father’s stable, and he would be so proud of what she has done with it.”

The Gosdens, who train at Clarehaven Stables in Newmarket, are no strangers to the winner’s enclosure at King Abdulaziz Racecourse, having produced MISHRIFF to win the feature race, the $20 million Group 1 Saudi Cup, in 2021.

Gosden senior is optimistic today’s winner can follow in Mishriff’s footprints and deliver on the world stage again this spring:

“If he’s in great form and flies home well, we came here with Mishriff and won a Saudi Cup and he went to Dubai, so there’s no reason he [Mostahdaf] couldn’t run in Dubai hopefully, on the big night, Dubai World Cup night.”

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