Bahrain: Charlie Appleby, who has enjoyed a stellar season with 17 G1 triumphs in 2021 including the Derby, King George and a spectacular Breeders’ Cup three-timer, is now turning his sights to the Bahrain International Trophy.
Britain’s champion trainer-designate is set to saddle two leading contenders in next week’s £500,000 race. Four-time G1 winner Barney Roy and recent runaway Listed scorer Zakouski will represent Appleby in the 1m2f contest, newly promoted to G3 status, at Sakhir racecourse on Friday November 19.
“Our plan was to go for the Bahrain International Trophy with Barney Roy last year, but unfortunately on the back of his success in Germany he met with a setback,” explained Appleby.
“We’ve been purposefully working back from the Bahrain International as it’s a race which is great to be part of. I’d like to think that we’re going to go over there with a competitive horse as well.
“I was pleased with his comeback run in the Darley Stakes on a track which doesn’t suit him,” the trainer added. “We got what we wanted out of it and hopefully he now has his racing brain back and engaged. I think the style of the race will suit him in Bahrain. It’s a slick track there and the tight turns will suit him. If he goes there with his old A-game, he’s going to be a big player.”
Appleby’s Godolphin colleague Saeed Bin Suroor also returns to Bahrain with Dubai Future, third at Kempton last week
Joining the British team is renowned globetrotter Lord Glitters, a staying-on fifth in last year’s Bahrain International. The popular David O’Meara-trained eight-year-old won his second career G1 in the Jebel Hatta at Meydan in March.
Also representing Britain are 1,000 Guineas third Fev Rover (Richard Fahey), Pogo (Charlie Hills), stepping up to 1m2f for the first time, and Victory Chime (Ralph Beckett), who posted a career-best in the Listed Foundation Stakes at Goodwood on his latest start.
France, which won the first Bahrain International in 2019 with Royal Julius in 2019, is represented by another Godolphin runner in Magny Cours (Andre Fabre), impressive winner of the G3 Prix Perth at Saint-Cloud last time out.
Penja, a G3 winner in France for former trainer Jean-Claude Rouget, was bought by owner Jurgen Sartori at Arqana’s Arc Sale last month. She will represent new trainer Andreas Suborics, while Cadillac (Jessica Harrington) is the sole Irish representative will be G2 winner Cadillac.
Last year’s winning trainer Fawzi Nass will be responsible for three of the four locally trained horses with Emperor Of The Sun, Qaader and Naamoos hoping to emulate 2020 winner Simsir. What A Welcome will be the other locally trained runner for Jalil Al Mallah.
Shaikh Salman bin Rashed al Khalifa, executive director of the Rashid Equestrian & Horse Racing Club, said: “It is an incredibly exciting field that has been assembled for the third running of the G3 Bahrain International Trophy.
“There are some highly progressive horses in the line-up with six different countries represented. We are very much looking forward to welcoming participants from all over the world for next week’s race.”
• Visit the Bahrain Turf Club website