Brass Hat tops the list of six South Florida-based runners bound for the March 25 Dubai World Cup program at Nad al Sheba Racecourse. The American runners are scheduled to depart from the Fort Lauderdale Airport Tuesday night, bound first for Europe before reaching Dubai.
A 5-year-old gelded son of Prized
, Brass Hat worked a half-mile March 13 at Gulfstream Park in :50 4/5 for trainer Buff Bradley, who conditions the grade I winner for his father, Fred Bradley.
"We just wanted to give him something easy, a chance to stretch his legs before he gets on the plane tomorrow night," Buff Bradley said. "He's not much of a work horse anyway. I'll stay to watch him get on the plane, and then I'll fly back to Lexington and leave for Dubai Saturday night."
Based at Turfway Park in Northern Kentucky, Brass Hat is a perfect two-for-two on the year with wins in the New Orleans Handicap (gr. II) and the Donn Handicap (gr. I).
Joining Brass Hat in the starting gate for the $6-million Dubai World Cup (UAE-I) will be the Todd Pletcher-trained Magna Graduate, who worked five furlongs in :59.00 at Palm Meadows Training Center March 12.
The 4-year-old son of Honor Grades, who is owned by Elisabeth Alexander, finished fourth in the Donn Handicap in his only start on the year.
Trainer Kiaran McLaughlin plans to saddle Mustanfar and Argentine-bred Invasor in a return visit to Nad al Sheba. Mustanfar is pointed for the $5-million Dubai Sheema Classic (UAE-IT), going 1 1/2 miles on the turf, while Invasor is headed for the $2-million UAE Derby (UAE-II) and opportunity to take advantage of the race's allowance for Southern Hemisphere 4-year-olds.
Shadwell Stable's Mustanfar returned from an eight-month layoff to finish fourth in the Gulfstream Park Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. IT). The 5-year-old Kentucky homebred son of the late stallion Unbridled won the Lexington Stakes (gr. IIIT) and the Sycamore Breeders' Cup (gr. IIIT) two years earlier.
Mustanfar raced only three times last year, including an allowance win at Gulfstream, but his performance last month off a layoff impressed McLaughlin, who earned leading trainer status at Nad al Sheba Racecouse while training for Sheikhs Mohammed and Hamdan al Maktoum.
Mustanfar recorded a five-furlong work over the dirt at Palm Meadows in 1:03 March 13.
Invasor, a son of Candy Stripes is yet to make a start in the United States, but earned championship honors following a five-for-five record while racing in Uruguay.
Invasor clocked five furlongs over the Palm Meadows surface in 1:02 March 13.
"He's been with us for about two-and-a-half-months," said McLaughlin. "He's done just about everything right that you want to see from a horse that came from the Southern Hemisphere. He's trained brilliantly, and we've worked him with some tough horses."
Trainer Christophe Clement, based at Payson Park, will send Moyglare Stud's 5-year-old Irish-bred Relaxed Gesture out against Mustanfar in the Sheema Classic.
The son of Indian Ridge hasn't started since winning the Canadian Invitational (Can-IT) at Woodbine last October.
Relaxed Gesture went five furlongs in 1:04 March 13 over the Payson Park dirt track.
Trainer Steve Asmussen plans to send Heiligbrodt Racing Stable and Michael Smurfit's 4-year-old Gaff to run in the $2-million Golden Shaheen Stakes (UAE-I). The son of Maria's Mon
most recently won the Mr. Prospector Handicap (gr. III).
Gaff went five furlongs in 1:01.60 at Palm Meadows March 13.