Lord North and Frankie Dettori romp to victory and record famous Dubai Turf hat-trick
The John and Thady Gosden-trained seven-year-old had dead-heated with subsequent Saudi Cup hero Panthalassa in this nine-furlong contest last year, having first won it in 2021.
He had shown his well-being with an easy victory in the Winter Derby at Lingfield last month under Robert Havlin. Reunited with his regular partner, the Italian was always in the ideal stalking position as the Roger Varian-trained El Drama set sensible fractions under David Egan. Nations Pride and William Buick tracked the leader, but Dettori always had him in his sights. Having sat in his slipstream, the seven-year-old loomed large approaching the final furlong. As the long-time leader faded down the stretch, Lord North wore down Charlie Appleby's runner and just had enough to fend off the late thrust from the Joao Moreira-ridden Danon Beluga to score by a three-quarters of a length. For Dettori, who is set to retire at the end of the year, it was a moment to savour. He said: "It's my farewell season and to win this on a horse that has done three years in a row is fantastic. "He can get sick easily and he's a seven-year-old gelding, but I was that confident I lost my whip 300 (yards) out! "I think his comeback run was better than last year and he was in better shape. I rode him the other morning, he didn't give me much of a feel but that's him. "He had a good draw in three and jumped good. I could have sat second but took him back and then filled him up in the straight. "Nine furlongs is his best distance. It's a remarkable job by the team to come back and win this for the third time. "I'm super chuffed, and really enjoying the night." Thady Gosden said: "The first time he won the race he showed a nice turn of foot and then last year his preparation wasn't quite as straightforward as this year. "The lad who rides him out every day thought he was in much better form than coming into last year. Obviously you can't say that beforehand in case it all goes wrong. "It was a little bit messy in the mid-part of the race and coming into the bend, but he missed any trouble and showed a great turn of foot to get to the front. He broke well from three and the strong pace up front definitely helped him. "He got a nice tow into it and he picked up as we know he can." He added: "It's fantastic and thanks to everyone at home in the yard, to the horse and to Frankie as well. He's a homebred gelding and it's fantastic for him to come here and win a race of this quality three times on the trot."
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