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Ocean Park disappoints in the Dubai Duty Free

March 31, 2013

http://www.justhorseracing.com.au/news/international-racing/ocean-park-disappoints-in-the-dubai-duty-free/197812

Cox Plate winner Ocean Park’s quest for international glory began poorly on Saturday night as he ran a flat 12th in the Group 1 Dubai Duty Free (1800m) behind Godolphin mare Sajjhaa.

Sajjhaa won comfortably from Mike de Kock’s The Apache, with French mare Giofra third.

The Godolphin mare had been in good form throughout the Dubai World Cup Carnival, winning the Group 1 Jebel Hatta (1800m) two weeks prior, and she was the third winner in a row to frank the form from Super Saturday.

She is yet to be beaten in Dubai, having won four from four on the Meydan track.

As for Ocean Park, he settled midfield, one out, under Johnny Murtagh.

Although he was boxed in entering the straight, the Cox Plate winner still didn’t quicken when given clear galloping room and was well beaten, finishing 10 lengths from the winner.

Murtagh was succinct post-race, simply saying: “They quickened up and I didn’t.”

His poor showing means New Zealand is still yet to win on Dubai World Cup night, with Sunline finishing third in the Dubai Duty Free in 2001 and Seachange recording a sixth in the same race in 2008.

Among the other notable runners was South Africa’s champion mare Igugu, whose run to finish fifth after a multitude of issues was credible.

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