03/31/2012 9:52AM

Dubai World Cup: African Story gets home team off to fast start in Godolphin Mile

Email
Andrew Watkins
African Story, Frankie Dettori up, gives Godolphin its 11th win in the Godolphin Mile.

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates - Godolphin continued its dominance of the $1 million Godolphin Mile on Saturday as African Story rolled to a four-length victory over Viscount Nelson at Meydan.

It was the 11th win in this race from 17 runnings for Godolphin, the ninth for trainer Saeed bin Suroor, and the seventh for jockey Frankie Dettori.

It was the third win from four starts at the Dubai Racing Carnival for African Story and was a similar effort as his four-length victory in the Group 3 Burj Nahaar three weeks ago.

Dettori kept African Story up close in third and was less than a length off the half-mile pace of 48.93 seconds established by Red Jazz.

In upper stretch, African Story took over and galloped home the easiest kind of winner. He ran a mile in 1:37.42 and returned $3.20 in U.S pools as the heavy favorite.

“I expected there to be more pace,” Dettori said. “Do It All is usually a front-runner, but he ran a bit flat day today, couldn’t lay up. I was happy where I was and I got to split when I wanted and the rest was history.”

African Story, a 5-year-old gelded son of Pivotal, has now won 5 of 12 starts.

“He’s getting better, he improves all the time, he’s doing well physically,” bin Suroor said. “Every time we run him he shows a better class. Now we keep options for Hong Kong.”

Western Aristocrat, who won the Grade 1 Jamaica at Belmont last fall, was pulled up midway through the race by jockey Ryan Moore and was taken back to the stable area for evaluation. Tom Ludt, president of The Vinery Stable, which owns Western Aristocrat, said the horse simply had swelling in an ankle and a few cuts, but otherwise was fine.

* TM Fred Texas, the U.S Arabian Horse of the year, rallied powerfully down the center of the Meydan Tapeta strip and won the $250,000 Kahayla Classic by 1 3/4 lengths over Seraphin Du Paon, who won this race last year.

Adrie De Vries rode the winner for trainer Ronald Martino. The horse is owned by Sheikh Joann Bin Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani.