Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 23 July 2014

Barzelona dazzles to leave Dettori in shade

Mickael Barzalona confirmed himself the most flamboyant newcomer among the European riding elite since Frankie Dettori with victory on Monterosso in the Dubai World Cup.

Barzalona's success on Saturday night means that he has now added the richest prize on the Turf to its most famous one, the Derby — and he is still only 20-years-old.

Barzalona was not even born when Dettori — the man to whom, unmistakably, he has become heir apparent — made his own breakthrough.

As such, the senior rider will perhaps feel that his current stature at Godolphin can be sustained — for the time being, at least — by a significant wealth of experience.

In his new role alongside Dettori at Godolphin, Barzalona will be testing his raw, instinctive brilliance against a variety of tracks in Britain.

But this insouciant youth dealt with the most bewildering of them all, last June, by breaking every Epsom convention.

Still last on the descent to Tattenham Corner, Pour Moi was produced so unerringly to lead on the post that Barzalona was already swaying upright in the irons and saluting the stands.

The censure of some that day did not prevent him reprising the same celebrations through the final 100 yards on Saturday.

Godolphin supremo Sheikh Mohammed explained: “Frankie Dettori (rode Prince Bishop, seventh) is a great jockey but we have horses running right and left so we need more than one jockey.”

There were lucrative wins for France, Australia and Britain respectively, through Cirrus Des Aigles, Ortensia and the dazzling Cityscape.

Clare native and former champion jockey Kieren Fallon was able to steer home Krypton Factor for Bahrain.

The defining image, however, was perhaps the warm congratulation extended by the Sheikh to Aidan O'Brien, who saddled Daddy Long Legs to an impressive success in the UAE Derby.

Ulster-owned Hitchens was fourth in the Dubai Golden Shaheen.

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