Dubai World Cup preview
What’s On has a Dubai World Cup preview. The richest horse race in the world at Meydan Racecourse on March 28 will also feature Kylie.
It’s the biggest, richest race on earth in the biggest grandstand ever built, but we simply know it as one of Dubai’s best days out. Here’s the lowdown on lasting the distance on World Cup Day…
Horses and jockeys coming from across the globe will compete in the seven races, which have a combined purse value of Dhs110 million, including the Dhs 37m for the lead race. Watch the horses in the parade ring before the race and try to pick a winner. Steer clear of those that seem overwhelmed by the occasion. Check the form guides in newspapers and on racecards, and look for horses that have run well at Meydan recently.
The day will be topped off by a live performance by Kylie Minogue. The superstar is due on stage at around 10pm and will entertain the crowd of thousands for an hour and a half, reeling off her iconic tunes. After her breakthrough as an actress in soap opera Neighbours, Kylie was offered a recording contract in 1987. Kylie transformed from wholesome pop princess into a sexy superstar and despite a public battle with breast cancer, she has continued to dominate the charts every decade with massive tunes including ‘Better the Devil You Know’, ‘Can’t Get You Out of My Head’ and ‘Spinning Around’.
PICK YOUR OUTFIT
Don’t leave it too late to go shopping for your outfit. Like the horses, the crowd at the Dubai World Cup must be well groomed too. Word has it that Dubai Outlet Mall is the place to head for serious bargains as stores restock after DSF. Race day is a great excuse to dress up and most ladies wear a feathered fascinator, fancy hat or borrowed fedora. Added motivation for dressing up comes from the big prize – the best-dressed competition in the Apron Views area.
The big race may not be until the evening of March 28, but tickets sell out fast, even with a 60,000 capacity arena. Admission to the grandstand is only Dhs25, but to be able to enjoy the party atmosphere, you’ll want to go for the Apron Views access, at a price of Dhs450. There will be a wide selection of bars, food stalls, entertainment and, of course, the always-competitive best-dressed awards. If you’re feeling flash, head for the first class lounge. For Dhs3,750 you get amazing views of the final bend, an international buffet and drinks.
WORLD CUP TIMELINE
1996 The Dubai World Cup bursts onto the scene carrying a prize purse of Dhs14 million.
1997 Torrential rain and a waterlogged track force organisers to postpone race day. The UAE Air Force is ordered to hover over the track to dry it out and five days later the race resumes.
1999 The prize money is increased to Dhs18 million.
2000 To mark the fifth anniversary of the race, prize money grows to Dhs22 million. Frankie Detorri wins aboard Dubai Millennium.
2010 The Dubai World Cup moves from the Nad Al Sheba track to the new Meydan Racecourse – the largest in the world. The prize pot is raised to Dhs36million.
2011 A poignant win for Victoire Pisa and the team from Japan. Months earlier, a devastating earthquake shakes northeastern Japan, causing catastrophic damage. The team wears black jerseys as a mark of respect.
2014 British thoroughbred and Godolphin horse, African Story, ridden by Silvestre De Sousa, sets a new track record with a time of 2.01.61mins.
Meydan Grandstand, Al Meydan Road, Dubai, noon, Dhs25 to Dhs3,750. Tel: (04) 3270077. Taxi: Meydan Racecourse. dubaiworldcup.com