Friday Meydan top horse racing tip: Spirit Of Light looking to shine in Dubai

Another high-quality card at Meydan has led Tipstrr horse racing pundit Steve Jones to venture abroad to look for his best value bet in the final race of the day.

Unusually for a large 16-strong handicap featuring older horses (none of the field are younger than four), only two of them have ever won on this turf track before.

One of them is Spirit Of Light, whose trainer Ian Williams won a valuable handicap here exactly a week ago with another of his six-year-olds, Enemy.

The shrewd trainer can strike again with Spirit Of Light, and this could be exactly the right time to catch the grey gelding as he returns to action following a break of 195 days, after last winning a handicap at Abu Dhabi on return from his previous break (of 213 days).

17:30 (Meydan) Spirit Of Light

That win, which also came in a competitive 16-runner affair on good ground, came over the shorter seven-furlong trip, but Spirit Of Light stays at least this far, as he has demonstrated on several previous occasions. 

Not least of those impressive outings came when finishing a very close second of 13 (beaten a neck) in a Listed contest over eight furlongs at Abu Dhabi just over a year ago, when he was narrowly edged-out by Moqtarreb, who re-opposes today.

However, Spirit Of Light needs that effort upgrading because on that occasion he came out of a very wide stall (12 of 13), yet still showed the speed to race prominently, hitting the front well over a furlong from home, before being headed in the last stride with the front pair clear.

Spirit Of Light has a much better draw than his lower-priced (and older) rival today, and he is also three pounds better-off than he was in that Listed race.

Always a classy performer around this track, Spirit Of Light ran within two lengths of the winner in a Group 2 seven-furlong contest here (on good) at exactly this time last year. Back then he did all his best work in the closing stages, despite coming wide off the final bend, and his never-nearer finish might have turned into a win over Friday's trip.

Spirit Of Light has only been with Ian Williams since the end of last April and has had only four outings for these connections so far, the second of which came in a strong Class 2 handicap (0-103) on the flat, left-handed track at Chester (on good).

Off a mark of 100 and out of a wide draw, he once again saved his strongest work for down the home straight, eventually ending up a strong-finishing third of 11 in the manner of a high-class handicapper who now looks to need a mile on a flat track with suitable ground like this.

Williams' big handicap winner here last week, Enemy, was returning from a 139-day break, so there is a very good chance that Spirit Of Light will be fully primed for this contest on his return to action, in which case he will have a good chance of being in contention off a mark that is seven pounds lower than at a similar stage last season.

Of the others, the aforementioned Moqtarreb is entitled to go well despite a wide draw in stall 14, and he will be looking to follow up last month's debut run for new connections, when he was given a relatively easy time in finishing midfield in a Listed race over this trip, his first outing since March last year.

  • Next best: Moqtarreb

He can be expected to come on a good deal for that reappearance, his new trainer will now know a lot more about him, and he is five pounds lower than when finishing fourth of 16 in a handicap over this very trip at a similar stage last season.

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