Secret Could Surprise At Meydan

Today wasn’t the day for Dalness Express, but although he finished 8th he was only beaten 4.5L for the win. He didn’t get the best of rides from McKee, and he was again switched wide in the home straight. When he eventually felt the warmth of the whip he did make ground on the outside, and perhaps a fast pace over 6f might be the answer. He will pop up at a big price at some stage, so keep an eye out for future entries.

Barzalona has hit the frame on almost 50% of his rides for Ghadayer.

Tomorrow is due to be rather nippy weather wise, so I have decided to head to sunnier climes for Thursday’s selection. There are some classy horses running at Meydan, and I can’t resist having a small each way bet on Untold Secret in the 78-94 handicap at 3.40pm. This 5yo son of Shamardal is in the care of up and coming trainer Salem bin Ghadayer, and he has had 5 places from his last 8 runners.

Mikael Barzalona is a jockey I have a lot of time for, and so does bin Ghadayer. He has had 50 rides for him, winning 6 and placing on 18. Barzalona prefers Untold Secret to Hunters Creek, and that could turn out to be a wise decision. Untold Secret has some decent turf form to his name, and he has a top class pedigree (out of French Oaks winner).

3 of his last 4 starts have come on the dirt, and clearly that surface wasn’t to his liking. Admittedly he did run poorly on good ground at Abu Dhabi back in November, but he was slowly away and the 11f trip was probably too far. He was beaten out of sight on the dirt here last month, but the return to 10f on good ground could suit. He gets in off a mark of 84, and that could vastly underestimate his ability.

The horse he beat on his last start over 10f on Turf, Pretorio, has since won a Listed heat and was just 8L behind New Bay in 4th in a Group 2 at Deauville. He has an official rating of 104 and Untold Secret was conceding a pound to him at Deauville. That piece of form makes Untold Secret’s mark of 84 look very attractive. Barzalona was on board for his only win, the cheek pieces are on and, if they work their magic, I think Untold Secret could run a huge race at odds of 16/1.


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