03/17/2016 9:18AM

Solow to miss Dubai Turf with injury

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Andrew Watkins/Dubai Racing Club
Solow wins the 2015 Dubai Turf at Meydan.

Solow, the best horse who had been expected to race March 26 on the Dubai World Cup program, was declared out of the $6 million Dubai Turf on Thursday by trainer Freddy Head because of an injury sustained during training Wednesday.

Solow struck himself with his hoof while galloping, and after saying Wednesday he believed the injury would not keep Solow from trying to score a second straight Dubai Turf win, Head reversed course Thursday. Head continued downplaying the severity of the injury, said at this point to be no more than a hematoma at the contact site, but said given the circumstances, he couldn’t risk putting Solow on his flight from France to Dubai on Friday.

The loss is a bitter one for the World Cup program since outside of the $10 million World Cup itself, Solow was the brightest start expected to contest any of the nine stakes races next Saturday. His win in the 2015 Dubai Turf marked a coming-out party for the late-blooming gelding, who would go on to an undefeated all-Group 1 season that made him the champion miler in Europe last year.

His absence leaves Godolphin’s Tryster as the solid antepost betting favorite, though the 5-year-old had never won a group stakes on turf before this winter at Meydan, where in succession he has captured the Group 3 Dubai Millennium Stakes and the Group 1 Jebel Hatta on the Super Saturday card March 5. Tryster has won nine of 12 career starts but until a couple of months ago appeared to be an all-weather specialist.

Also receiving antepost attention now are the Japanese horse Real Steel and the South African import Forries Waltz, who also is 2 for 2 this winter on the Meydan turf. Euro Charline, the 2014 Beverly D. Stakes winner, is generally close to a 20-1 chance in antepost betting, while the lone American shipper in the race, Flamboyant, is an even longer price.

Heart to Heart, a second American horse who had been expected to run, was a last-second scratch from a Sunday flight from Florida to Dubai and races instead in the Maker’s 46 Mile next month at Keeneland.