‘Soldiering’ On

‘Victorious’ in the 2021 G1 Al Maktoum Challenge R3 ahead of a fifth-place effort behind Mystic Guide (Ghostzapper) in the G1 Dubai World Cup, 8-year-old Salute the Soldier (Ger) (Sepoy {Aus}) sat a four-wide trip while punching the breeze and showed his superiour late stamina to best a game Bendoog (Gun Runner) Saturday evening at Meydan Racecourse to earn a return ticket to the $12-million feature in three weeks’ time.

The veteran galloper, a disappointing fifth behind World Cup market leader Algiers (Ire) (Shamardal) and Bendoog in Round 2 of the challenge Feb. 3, was a half-step slow from a wide barrier but mustered some speed and was in fifth position as First Constitution (Chi) (Constitution) showed the way into the first corner. The latter appea Steered out into about the four path with about 1300 metres to traverse, Salute the Soldier always traveled sweetly for Adrie de Vries just off the flank of Bendoog. red to be going well as the field neared the straight, claimed First Constitution with three-sixteenths of a mile and went for home. But Salute the Soldier, who always figured the better stayer between the two, struck to the lead 150 metres out and went on to score by a comfortable margin. First Constitution held for third ahead of Law of Peace (GB) (Shamardal), who ran on for fourth while no menace to the winner. Salute the Soldier was completing a race-to-race double for his owner and trainer, who took out the Listed Al Bastakiya S. for the 3-year-olds one race previously.

“He lost form last year for some reason, but there was some optimism this year. We know he’s got the ability,” said winning trainer Fawzi Nass, who would not fully commit to a start in the World Cup.

Pedigree Notes:

Salute the Soldier is the product of a G1 Golden Slipper S.-winning sire raced by Godolphin, who finished well down the field behind the Fawzi Nass-trained Krypton Factor (GB) (Kyllachy {GB}) in the 2012 G1 Dubai Golden Shaheen. Dam sire Street Cry needs little introduction, as he won this race–when contested at Group 2 level in 2002–and doubled up with a towering 4 1/4-length tally in the big race.

Street Fire is also the dam of the 3-year-old filly Fox Flame (GB) (Iffraaj {GB}), the 2-year-old filly Smouldering (Ire) (Profitable {GB}) and a yearling filly by Profitable.

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