03/29/2014 11:59AM

Golden Shaheen: Sterling City closes strong on outside

Dubai Racing Club
Sterling City wins the $2 million Golden Shaheen by 2 1/4 lengths.

Sterling City closed from off the pace to catch Rich Tapestry in the final strides in Saturday’s $2 million Golden Shaheen, giving Hong Kong-based runners a sweep of the first two positions in the valuable sprint at Meydan Racecourse in Dubai.

Sterling City was ridden by Joao Moreira, who also won the Al Quoz Sprint earlier on the program with Hong Kong’s Amber Sky. While Amber Sky led throughout, Sterling City, the 9-4 favorite, was the third horse to lead in the stretch of the Group 1 Golden Shaheen, run over six furlongs.

Zee Bros, winner of the Chick Lang Stakes at Pimlico last May but based in Dubai since the start of this year, led from the start and held a narrow advantage into the stretch. Zee Bros was caught by 7-2 Rich Tapestry, who looked like a winner until Sterling City closed with a wide rush to win by 2 1/4 lengths.

United Color, a 16-1 outsider, finished third. United Color, a 5-year-old Kentucky-bred by Ghostzapper, finished fifth in the 2013 Golden Shaheen behind Reynaldothewizard, who finished fourth in this year’s 13-runner field.

Zee Bros, who finished 10th in the Grade 1 Malibu Stakes at Santa Anita in December, faded to finish sixth.

Sterling City is trained by James Moore. A 6-year-old Australian-bred gelding by the Redoute’s Choice stallion Nadeem, Sterling City was third in the Group 1 Chairman’s Sprint Prize in Hong Kong in February. The Golden Shaheen was Sterling City’s first win since the $322,500 Chinese Club Challenge Cup, a handicap over seven furlongs on turf Jan. 1.