03/30/2013 11:25AM

UAE Derby: Kentucky Derby likely next for victorious Lines of Battle


DUBAI, United Arab Emirates – The jockey Ryan Moore does not suffer wandering questions gladly. A querying reporter was trying to get to the bottom of the tactics that might have led to Lines of Battle’s win Saturday night in the UAE Derby. Moore put it in simple terms.

“I think he was just by far the best horse in this race,” he said.

The UAE Derby is a qualifying race for starting spots in the Kentucky Derby, and Lines of Battle’s connections plan to put to use the 100 points the colt earned for his win here.

“We’ll have a look at the Derby,” said Aidan O’Brien, who won this race last year with Daddy Long Legs, and took second in 2011 with Master of Hounds.

By “look at,” O’Brien, who trains Lines of Battle for breeder Joe Allen and the Coolmore operation, means Lines of Battle will show up in Louisville barring a setback. O’Brien’s last two UAE Derby runners both ran in the Derby, Daddy Long Legs finishing 20th, Master of Hounds 5th.

[DUBAI WORLD CUP: Watch replays and read race recaps]

Lines of Battle came out of the Meydan saddling ring looking like a powerhouse, light on his toes, well developed in his back end for an early-season 3-year-old. He broke on top, was coaxed back to press the pace while two wide: A head-on shot of the running showed Lines of Battle nearly pulling Moore out of the saddle. Moore let Snowboarder take the lead about 500 meters from the finish, but when he turned for home, Lines of Battle was ready to go again. He easily collared Snowboarder and, despite drifting out – “idling,” Moore said – won the Group 1, $1 million UAE Derby by 1 1/2 lengths over Elleval. Secret Number, whose tough trip was partly his own doing, rallied creditably to finish third. Lines of Battle paid $9.40 in the United States.

Lines of Battle finished a close seventh in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf after breaking from post 14 and enduring a wide trip, and now has won both his starts on synthetic surfaces. Saturday, he raced second as Law Enforcement set slow fractions on a very dull racing surface, submitting to Moore’s request to wait for the stretch run after Snowboarder swept past. Winning time for the mile and three-sixteenths on Tapeta was a glacial 2:02.05, but fit in with previous times on the card.

Elleval, a locally based horse, rallied from midpack to get second, with Secret Number finishing third while losing for the first time in three starts. Secret Number got rank on the backstretch while racing in traffic and finished decently, and might be pointed to the Dante Stakes and the Epsom Derby in England.

The two America horses made no impact, Dice Flavor finishing 8th and He’s Had Enough, the 2012 Breeder’ Cup Juvenile runner-up, 11th.

“He’s got to stop acting like a playboy if we’re going to get anywhere with him,” said Leandro Mora, assistant to He’s Had Enough’s trainer, Doug O’Neill.

Glenn Canady More than 1 year ago
I am liking this horse more and more. I will have him on my Pick 4 and Pick 3
Rogelio Drenning More than 1 year ago
Looks to me like the KD winner. He sure doesnt have much to beat this year. Pathetic numbers all around. Shoot this horse might take the Triple Crown if he takes to the dirt. Watch the work outs!
Lourdes Franco More than 1 year ago
Lines of Battle will come in 15th at best in the KD.
Matt Bernier More than 1 year ago
I don't think people are putting enough stock into this colt...this is a colt that has the breeding of an American dirt horse, not a European turf horse. Regardless of the time, the fact that he won on the Tapeta should be viewed as a huge plus. Being out of War Front and an Arch mare, he's got a wonderful blend of speed and stamina in his pedigree. I still like Orb, but I think many people are sorely mistaken if they think they can dismiss Lines of Battle.
Eddie Cruz More than 1 year ago
El Labelle the #2 WAS THE BEST HORSE IN THAT RACE. Trapped on the rail through the whole race he was unable to settle. Finally had to pull and take a shot to the outside... Man he looked SUPER, I thought, after the trouble trip, he was going to get the job done. Anyway, he's not on the Derby list. Probably not nominated....
thedingo8 More than 1 year ago
Revolutionary, not only was wide, but was headed and ran on and galloped out nicely...
thedingo8 More than 1 year ago
Never run on dirt and this time 202.5 is for 1900 meters the kd is 2036 meters... Nice pay for ,as Ryan Moore says , not even a gallop, but a canter.
Brandon Layer More than 1 year ago
Was this Lines of Battle's first start of the year?
Brandon Layer More than 1 year ago
Elleval is in too. Maybe the UAE Derby should be a 50 pointer so the second place horse isn't automatically in too.
John Stevelberg More than 1 year ago
Our first official - DERBY THROW OUT. If he runs in the super I will apologize to all DRF readers - until then THROW OUT.
Bruce Baudoux More than 1 year ago
Never throw anything out from the yard of Aidan O'Brien, big mistake my friend, big mistake. This horseman will go down as one of the all time greatest to ever bridle a racehorse and although his son Joseph will probably grow out of the saddle in the immediate future it is a thrill to watch them win races on the world's biggest stages. Back of the net boys, well done.
Steve Wilson More than 1 year ago
My personal rules for Derby selection: 1. Never play a horse that didn't run at 2 (Yes, Bodemeister ran well, but he still didn't win). 2. Completely forget any horse who prepped in Dubai, as they are nothing but $$$ burners. Good luck, all!