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Dubai: Durcan delight as Oaks highlights carnival treble.

Byline: Tony Elves

TED DURCAN must be wishing that the Dubai International Racing Carnival was not coming to an end as the in-form jockey stole the show at Nad Al Sheda last night with a

hat-trick on Tamarillo, Feet So Fast and Mubeen.

The highlight of the penultimate leg of the carnival, which ends on Dubai World Cup night on March 27, was the UAE Oaks, which was widely expected to be a match between Clive Brittain's Menhoubah and Festive Style, but Durcan clearly hadn't read the script aboard Tamarillo as he notched up his 12th win in the series.

Having been pushed into the lead turning for home, the Daylami filly didn't flinch an inch as Festive Style bore down on her, and galloped on courageously to score by a length and a half, with Menhoubah a disappointing eight and a quarter lengths back in third.

Durcan, clearly delighted to pick up the $250,000 event, said: "I've always liked her and rode her in the May Hill for Michael Bell last year. She has grown stronger over the winter and, in a perfect world, she is bred to be a mile-and-a-half filly.

"She has a great attitude and really battled on, and she would make a nice filly in Europe."

That decision will be made in the future, but her trainer Mazin Al Kurdi has other plans up his sleeve beforehand.

He said: "I think she will go for the UAE Derby - she stays well and I will speak to Sheikh Rashid, but she should end up in Europe."

Durcan had earlier gained recompense on Feet So Fast in the

six-and-a-half-furlong handicap.

The Pivotal gelding had controversially lost a race in the stewards' room when his jockey had weighed in light at the end of last month and had been put up 2lb for that `success', but he was always travelling well and picked up his rivals in stylish fashion as he galloped to a two-and-a-quarter length success from Boston Lodge.

Winning trainer Satish Seemar said: "Thankfully, he has come back with a vengeance and he's a horse with a lot of class. He may go overseas over six or seven furlongs to Japan or Europe."

The ex-Ed Dunlop-trained Mubeen won his first race since moving to Dubai when staying on strongly to land the ten-furlong handicap on the dirt.

Erwan Charpy, trainer of the winner, said: "He was suited by the strong pace and the outside draw and didn't enjoy being tied up on the inside in his previous two starts. He was always travelling well and stays well."

Winisk River had come back from an 18-month absence when making a winning debut for Godolphin at the course last month, and he showed plenty of courage when following up that success in the mile handicap on the turf.

Trainer Saeed Bin Suroor said: "He looks a brave horse and stuck on well between two horses when it looked difficult for him.

"Frankie gave him a good ride and the horse is learning all the time."

Dettori also took the Balanchine Stakes when Gonfilia made all for a six-length success from Desert Glow.

Dettori said: "She broke well and is a bit like a woman as she likes to get her own way. She works well, and worked well again after her flop last time, but she was pricking her ears and enjoying it."

Scott's View could have earned his place in the line-up for the Dubai Sheema Classic after putting a

below-par effort here last Saturday behind him in the mile-and-a-half handicap.

The Mark Johnston-trained gelding was kept to the inside from his low draw and was brought with a

well-timed challenge by Stanley Chin to collar Clodion in the final furlong before winning by a length and a half, his second success in Dubai this


Deirdre Johnston, wife of trainer Mark, said: "We'll have to wait and see, but we'll have to seriously think about running in the Sheema Classic and he will probably stay for that race.

"In Saturday's race he was terribly drawn and had no cover and the race was tougher, but I have ridden him myself the past two mornings and he was bouncing.

"He's a very versatile horse at home, and he won from the front in soft ground at Doncaster in November, but round here he needs to be covered up and switched off, and Stanley rode a fantastic race."

The race was marred by the death of the Jeremy Noseda-trained Adiemus, who had to be destroyed after breaking a knee and a cannonbone.

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Ted Durcan and Tamarillo (right) beat Festive Style to the spoils in the Melbourne Racing Club UAE Oaks ANDREW WATKINS
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Title Annotation:Sports
Publication:The Racing Post (London, England)
Date:Mar 12, 2004
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