Monterosso cruised home on Saturday to win the $10 million Dubai World Cup at Meydan for the Ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed.
Excitable French-based jockey Mickael Barzalona piloted the winner. He stood high in the saddle before even crossing the finish as he hit the wire clear of stablemate Capponi giving Shiekh Mohammed’s Godolphin Stable the top two placings in the world’s richest race.
‘’The Boss” as the Sheikh is affectionately known was jubilant as he hugged the person nearest to him and danced around with joy as Monterosso avenged his unlucky third in the race last year.
The former Australian star So You Think, now with the Coolmore team, finished fourth after racing near the lead throughout.
U.S runners were not a factor in the race. Royal Delta finished 9th under Jose Lezcano.
“We had a good position but in the middle of the turn, the horse in front of me quit so I had to wait a little longer than I wanted to,” Lezcano said. “She gave me a good run at the end but this surface is a little different – it’s a little sticky.”
Game on Dude, after pressing the early pace, wound up 12th under Chantal Sutherland.
“It was a good trip considering everything that happened,” Sutherland said. “The horse next to him was acting up in the gate, so he thought they were going to break. At home we break quicker, so he went to go forward and then he sat down. He just got a little frazzled after not breaking so great. Then he relaxed. He was good and on the backside he just wanted to get into his rhythm. So I did what I always do, and let him try to get there and I waited. The track is very tiring.”
Winning rider Barzalona, 20, born in Corsica and based in France is rapidly carving his own name in racing history. He will soon join the Godolphin stable at Newmarket in England as a retained jockey.
“I couldn’t believe it when no one was coming after me (in the straight),” Barzalona said. “This is a dream. I have no words to describe what I feel right now. “
Asked about his dramatic celebration on the line, he said: “I just had to, I had no choice.”
Sheikh Mohammed and Mikael Barzalona in the Meydan winner’s enclosure/Hopwood photo courtesy of Dubai Racing Club