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14 Feb 2011 | 19:15
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Rain no soft touch in MeydanHeadlines
Paul Hanagan

Soft Falling Rain stretched his 100% record to five with an authoritative victory in the UAE 2000 Guineas at Meydan.

The Mike de Kock-trained runner justified his short price of 8-11 in this Group Three with a smooth success when tackling a mile for the first time.

Paul Hanagan had Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum's colt just behind the Tom Dascombe-trained leader Deauville Prince in the early stages. Hanagan set sail for home at the top of the straight and asserted to win by two and a quarter lengths from Snowboarder with Zahee, also trained by De Kock, third.

"I have to say a great team effort from Mike de Kock and the lads. He was a bit fresh the first two runs. He's totally gone the right way now - lovely and relaxed," Hanagan told At The Races.

"There's always a bit of doubt in your mind (about a longer trip), but the way he relaxed last time and from sitting on him at home I was always pretty confident."

Godolphin enjoyed a four-timer with Mental, Moonwalk In Paris, Kassiano and Anatolian all obliging. Mental (7-2) wore down the De Kock-trained Kavanagh in the last 50 yards to land the spoils in the Al Shindagha Sprint.

Mickael Barzalona found an extra gear out of the Mahmood Al Zarooni-trained five-year-old to grab the six-furlong Group Three by a length with Krypton Factor third. Irish raider Balmont Mast, trained by Eddie Lynam, stuck on well for fourth.

Al Zarooni and Barzalona also struck with Anatolian in the Range Rover Sprint Trophy (Handicap). Brought with a well-timed run, the 13-8 favourite was a length and a quarter too strong for Topclas. Bob Le Beau, trained by Jessica Harrington, faded after being up with the pace until the straight.

Ahmed Ajtebi conjured an incredible run on Moonwalk In Paris (9-2) to snatch the third Group Three on the card, the Firebreak Stakes. He managed to weave his way through to the rail on the five-year-old, also trained Al Zarooni, and win from stablemate Fullbright by two lengths, with Barbecue Eddie third.

Saeed bin Suroor went one better when saddling the first three home for Godolphin in the Range Rover Evoque Trophy (Handicap) headed by the Silvestre de Sousa-ridden Kassiano, while Jamie Spencer brought the David Simcock-trained Trade Storm (9-1) from last to first to take the Jaguar XF Trophy (Handicap) by three and three-quarter lengths.

3 March 2015

Winner strikes JCR sponsorship deal
Fontwell washed away
Cue Card out of Cheltenham
Riches camp 'all over' Lough
Waterlogged Fontwell inspects
Waterlogged Fontwell inspects
Sensation ready for Grand Annual
Waterlogged Fontwell inspects
McCoy shines on Sivola
Weekend plan for Lincoln hope Boy
Arzal seeking change of luck
Bentelimar booked for Supreme rule
Watering possible at Cheltenham
Aintree beckons for Milan
Dundalk unlikely for Byron
Sizing team to make late call
Hobbs unveils Cheltenham hopes

2 March 2015

Wincanton Thursday abandoned
Cops on patrol for Pertemps
Stars on show at Cheltenham
Codd angling for Festival glory
Duke set Carlisle agenda
Prospects bleak at Wincanton
Moon camp wary of Irish threat
Magic McCoy on target with Fredo
Azorian back in winning groove
Berlais lands Auteuil prize
Fred Winter favoured for Berbas
High hopes for Meade Festival team
Cooper seeks Cheltenham riches
Lemaire in hot water in Japan
Reckless camp consider Arkle bid

1 March 2015

Cecil runner second at Huntingdon
High hopes for Meade Festival team
Super set for National Duty
Longsdon retains Joe faith
Nolan hoping Noble makes cut
Camping in line for Cup bid
Bin Suroor tribute for Cavalryman
Vautour excites Mullins in workout
Elliott posse work at Leopardstown
Geraghty confirmed for Master
Wayward back on right track
Investment gains Greatwood gold
Bal win delights connections
Glinger burns off Kelso rivals
Pipe proves he's a Soll man
Geraghty shines on Leave It

28 February 2015

Festival plans fluid for Cyclone
Walter back for another victory
Irish pair do battle in France
Geraghty: Sprinter will be fitter
Wylie lines up Cheltenham team
Twiston-Davies Blak in business
Divine Bishop on Festival trail
Irish duo set Doncaster poser
Night riding high for Grimthorpe
Glingerburn facing another battle
Pipe targets Aintree with veterans
Carlito primed for Kelso return
McCoy not planning Festival goodbye
Bridge camp praying for rain
Cook suspended from riding

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