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Roger Varian not discouraged after Postponed defeat

4 Mar 2017

Roger Varian-trained star finds Prize Money too strong in the Dubai City Of Gold at Meydan


Postponed was not helped by a combination of factors when beaten on his return. Picture:

Postponed suffered a shock defeat on his return in the Dubai City Of Gold at Meydan on Saturday.

The Roger Varian-trained six-year-old looked to have a straightforward task on paper – he was officially rated at least 9lb superior to his rivals – and was sent off 2-5 favourite to gain back-to-back victories in the race.

However, he played up before the start, met trouble in running and got going too late under Andrea Atzeni once in the clear and was unable to peg back the Saeed Bin-Suroor-trained Prize Money. Charlie Appleby’s Emotionless finished close up in third.

“It was a messy race and I think he just ran a bit rusty on what was his first run for five months,” Varian said.

“He didn’t look as sharp as he was for this race last year. Having said that, with a clear run I think he’d have won, even if he wouldn’t have been as impressive as a lot of people might have expected.

“We’re disappointed to get beaten, but not discouraged. Tonight wasn’t his big gig, that will come in three weeks’ time. We left a bit to work on and I’m sure he’ll improve.”

Postponed had been an emphatic winner of the Group Two contest 12 months ago.

That victory ignited a stellar campaign for the son of Dubawi as he went on to land the Dubai Sheema Classic, before starring in the QIPCO British Champions Series – landing the Investec Coronation Cup and the Juddmonte International.

Making his first appearance since his defeat in the Arc at Chantilly, Postponed travelled well for much of the mile-and-a-half journey.

However, having been drawn widest of all in stall 10, he was caught in a pocket rounding the home turn and Prize Money’s rider, Adrie de Vries, cleverly prevented Atzeni from switching wide.

While Prize Money set sail for home, Postponed fought for racing room and while he did eventually find top gear after moving through a gap on the rail, it was all too late as Saeed bin Suroor’s 4-1 shot clung on gamely.