Diamond date for Dubai

By Darryl Sherer

Racenet (racenet.com.au)

Having already won a Group I race at Caulfield in their first season of training as a partnership, Peter and Paul Snowden are looking to make it a brace with exciting two-year-old Pride Of Dubai.

The duo won the Caulfield Guineas with Shooting To Win last year in their own name and the Blue Diamond twice during Peter’s tenure as head trainer for Darley.

Sepoy and Earthquake won in the maroon and white and the Snowden’s will target the $1 million sprint with Pride Of Dubai after his fast finishing second to Of The Brave in last Saturday’s Group III Prelude for males.

It would have taken some vigorous work to wipe the smile from the face of Paul Snowden following Saturday’s race.

“Honestly, what he’s done to date is all a bonus. He’s one of the top five (two-year-olds) we have got.” Snowden said.

“He got stranded on a property for a little while which is why he wasn’t paid up for the Slipper or Diamond. It was not because we didn’t think he was good enough, it was just the circumstances and he lost some time because of it.”

Pride Of Dubai’s connections will pay a $55,000 late entry fee by noon on February 23 to get the colt into the Blue Diamond Stakes field.

“We will pay up to go on to the Diamond. We have always said to the Sheikh that you are probably going to have to pay the late entry, and he is all for it.”

Pride Of Dubai was bred by Sheikh Mohammad bin Khalifa al Maktoum in whose colours he races and is a Street Cry half-brother to the Listed Gothic Stakes winner Al Aneed.

Last Saturday Pride Of Dubai was racing for just the second time and Snowden is convinced there is a lot of improvement to come.

“We got shuffled back a bit further than we wanted on Saturday but he hit the line very hard,” Snowden said.

“I’ve never doubted the horse’s ability. In two weeks we will be back here, draw a barrier and hopefully he will be good enough.”