Updated on 09/17/2011 10:11AM

Sulamani, Ipi Tombe light up night


DUBAI, United Arab Emirates - Sulamani and Ipi Tombe produced the two most electrifying performances on Dubai World Cup night at Nad Al Sheba Saturday, while the top American performances were second-place finishes by Grey Memo and Avanzado.

Sulamani served notice that he will be difficult to beat this season as he came from nearly 15 lengths out of it at the three-eighths pole to run down French invader Ange Gabriel for a three-quarters of a length victory in the Group 1, $2 million Dubai Sheema Classic. He ran the 1 1/2 miles in 2:27.67 and paid $3.80 to win in the United States.

Sulamani now takes dead aim at his main objectives, the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes and the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe, a race in which he finished second last year in his start prior to Saturday's. Sulamani is a son of Hernando who was purchased by Godolphin last fall from the Niarchos Family.

Ipi Tombe overcomes rough trip

Ipi Tombe was equally exciting in running off with the Group 1, $2 million Dubai Duty Free. The only filly in a field of 12 going 1 1/8 miles on turf, Ipi Tombe was knocked around toward the back of the pack early, and had to be checked twice in the first quarter-mile by rider Kevin Shea. Entering the 2 1/2-furlong stretch, Shea found room and Ipi Tombe took off. She took the lead with 120 yards to go and drew away to defeat Paolini by three lengths in a track record 1:47.61. Ipi Tombe returned $3.60 to win in the U.S.

Trainer Mike de Kock and co-owner Barry Irwin of Team Valor had to endure a 20-minute inquiry initiated by Andreas Suborics, the rider of runner-up Paolini. Ipi Tombe brushed with Paolini as she made her winning move, but the stewards allowed the result to stand.

Ipi Tombe will now join trainer Elliott Walden in Kentucky and, according to Irwin, "she will have a little rest and then we'll prepare her for the Arlington Million."

For the South African de Kock, it was a bittersweet victory, winning the race but losing the Zimbabwe-bred Ipi Tombe.

"This is the greatest day in the history of South African racing," he said. "But I'm sorry to see Ipi Tombe go."

Firebreak holds off Grey Memo

Firebreak denied Grey Memo a second consecutive victory in the Group 2, $1 million Godolphin Mile, with a ground-saving ride from Frankie Dettori proving the key.

A comfortable 3 1/2-length winner of last year's race, Grey Memo was sent seven wide entering the stretch by Kent Desormeaux. Dettori put Firebreak on the lead just inside the quarter pole. Grey Memo made up ground with every step from the eighth pole but couldn't nail Firebreak, who prevailed by three-quarters of a length in 1:36.20. There was no betting on the Mile in the U.S.

As wide as he was, Grey Memo was surely the best horse in the race. "I thought he was going to win on the home turn, but the winner stayed on," Desormeaux said.

Firebreak will probably race next in Europe, but he could run on dirt in the United States later in the year, said Simon Crisford, Godolphin racing manager.

Cayoke, in his first start on dirt, lost a duel with Estimraar for third in the Mile. Trainer Julio Canani was encouraged by the performance.

"He needs a faster pace than he got here tonight," Canani said. "I'll bring him home and give him an eight-week rest, but I'm going to keep him on dirt."

Of the other Americans in the Mile, Mr. John finished sixth, Super Derby winner Essence of Dubai ran seventh, and Easyfromthegitgo was 11th.

State City upsets Golden Shaheen

Avanzado, ridden by Tyler Baze, looked like the winner of the

Group 1, $2 million Dubai Golden Shaheen when he went clear at the three-sixteenths pole, but he couldn't hold off State City, a 25-1 shot with British bookies and more than 60-1 in the U.S., where he paid $127 to win.

State City's winning margin was three-quarters of a length. His time for the straight six furlongs was 1:09.95.

State City, who ran in the colors of one of Sheikh Mohammed's daughters, will now join Godolphin's Belmont-based team of older horses.

American horse Captain Squire was third, beaten 2 1/2 lengths, while My Cousin Matt was beaten a head for fourth by the Australian mare Belle du Jour.