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All happy with Gun Pit and Rich Tapestry ahead of Super Saturday


Dubai’s Super Saturday card is only two days hence and Hong Kong’s standout dirt track racers, Gun Pit and Rich Tapestry, appear to be in fine order for their respective engagements in the G1 Maktoum Challenge Round 3 (2000m, dirt) and the G3 Mahab Al Shimaal (1200m, dirt).

Rich Tapestry is in the midst of a third Dubai campaign with a record of two wins and two places from his four starts in the emirate, including an easy victory at the course and distance in last month’s Al Shindagha Sprint. Gun Pit is a relative novice, his only past experience away from Hong Kong being a forgettable run in Japan’s G1 Champions Cup (1800m, dirt) last December.

Gun Pit had the look of a happy horse this morning as he cantered two laps of Meydan’s dirt track. The work was no more than routine exercise and trainer Caspar Fownes is pleased with the five-year-old Dubawi gelding, who arrived in Dubai a week ago.

“I’m very happy - he’s let down nicely. Obviously the first couple of days he would have tucked up, which is quite normal when they travel. Now his body-weight is good and he’s eating – he’s right in front of me eating his grub now and he looks happy,” said Fownes, who did not land in time to watch his charge work but headed directly to the stables from the airport.

It was the same scenario for Rich Tapestry’s handler, Michael Chang, but jockey Gerald Mosse was on hand at Meydan to watch Rich Tapestry canter under regular work rider Justine Clark. That was shortly after 7 am. The gelding gave every appearance of a horse relishing life and primed for his next assignment as he cantered a circuit with his ears pricked.

Mosse enjoyed a dream run atop the eight-year-old when they partnered successfully in the Al Shindagha Sprint at the course and distance last time. 

“It was the first time I’d ridden him and he showed me that he really is a different horse on dirt than he is on turf. He’s 100 percent a different horse,” said the Frenchman.  

“I won’t ride him before the race. It’s important to keep him relaxed, and anyway he’s fit from his run a couple of weeks ago so he doesn’t need too much.

“Seeing him this morning, I’m very pleased with how he looks. He’s an experienced horse and he knows his job. When he’s on the dirt nothing disturbs him and he does his job very well.”

On Saturday, Chang’s charge will face only five rivals in his attempt at a second Mahab Al Shimaal, a race he won in 2014 when it was staged on Tapeta. The target then will be the G1 Dubai Golden Shaheen at the course and distance on 26 March, a race in which he has placed second and third in the last two editions.

“I would say, the way he won last time, he could win again, but he has to face a couple of different horses this time and more again in the big race. But the way he is - keeping happy – maybe he can do it,” said Mosse.

Michael Chang-trained Rich Tapestry, with Gerald Mosse on board, makes all to win the G3 Al Shindagha Sprint (1200m) at Meydan last month.
Photo 1:
Michael Chang-trained Rich Tapestry, with Gerald Mosse on board, makes all to win the G3 Al Shindagha Sprint (1200m) at Meydan last month.


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