Saudi Cup Contenders
The Saudi Cup contenders of 2020 included American Champion Three Year Old Colt Maximum Security, Pegasus World Cup winner Mucho Gusto, star European runner Benbatl, globe-trotting standout mare Magic Wand, and Japanese runners Chrysoberyl and Gold Dream, as well as American mare Midnight Bisou, winner of five Grade 1 races.
In a game performance, Maximum Security won by three-quarters of a length over Midnight Bisou after running down Mucho Gusto in the lane. Benbatl closed for third, with the superfecta paying $1,247.70. Maximum Security paid $4.40 to win and Midnight Bisou paid $8 to place. Luis Saez was aboard Maximum Security for the win. Jason Servis was the trainer.
The racing took place in the evening, with temperatures cooling off to be in the high 70s by post time. The entire card mimicked both the Breeders’ Cup and the Dubai World Cup card with its pageantry and star quality.
Saudi Cup History and Payouts
The other winners on the first Saudi Cup day included popular gray Arabian Tallab Al Khalediah in the Obaiya Arabian Classic.
The first $1 million race of the day was the Mohamed Yousuf Naghi Motors Cup, which saw 40 – 1 Port Lions defeat Japanese star Deirdre and 16 – 1 For the Top for the win.
The 2020 Saudi Derby went to Full Flat, who defeated Mishriff and paid $31.00. Full Flat is based in Japan but was thought highly of to the point that he ran in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile in 2019. Mishriff went on to win the Group 1 French Derby in July, 2020.
The Saudia Sprint went to New York Central, a gray who defeated Japan’s Matera Sky and former American runner Gladiator King to pay $23.40. New York Central was ridden by Irad Ortiz, but is trained by Sami Al Harabi.
The $1 million 1351 Cup, a turf sprint, went to Dark Power under Frankie Dettori. The gray paid $57.40 to win and topped a $2,178.70 trifecta and a $16,494.30 superfecta.
The final big race was the Longines Turf Handicap, which went to Call the Wind. The chestnut paid $17.40 under international star rider Olivier Peslier.
The 2021 Saudi Cup will be held the last Saturday in February at King Abdulaziz Racetrack in Riyadh.