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The Saudi Cup becomes highest World Pool turnover race of 2023
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World Pool’s first meeting in Saudi Arabia on Saturday was greeted by globally commingled turnover of HK$197,800,886 (approx. $25.2m) across the six Group races offered via pari-mutuel organisations from over 20 countries.

The world’s most valuable race, The Saudi Cup (G1), plundered by Japan’s Dubai Turf winner Panthalassa, was the most bet on contest at HK$48,388,160 (approx. $6.2m), higher than any race commingled at either of the first two World Pool racedays of the year in South Africa and Australia.

The fourth World Pool race of the night, the Saudi Derby (G3), was won by the locally-trained King Commissioner and saw $HK34,632,172 (approx. $4.1m) bet, the second highest turnover race of the night, while the Red Sea Turf Handicap was the other race to come in over HK$30million at HK$30,448,420 (approx. $3.9m).

Newly-announced World Pool ambassador Frankie Dettori rode Elite Power to victory in the Riyadh Dirt Sprint (G3), where turnover hit HK$29,332,759 (approx. $3.7m).

Panthalassa’s wire-to-wire victory in the US$20million feature, his first success on dirt, was also chosen as the World Pool Moment of the Day, meaning groom, Yasuhiro Ikeda, will receive a cheque for HK$40,000 (approx. $5,100).

Ikeda will now have the chance to win a VIP trip to Hong Kong next year should Panthalassa’s Saudi Cup triumph be named World Pool Moment of the Year.

Sam Nati, Head of Comminging at the Hong Kong Jockey Club, said: “Hitting almost HK$200million on a six-race card is really positive, particularly with The Saudi Cup itself generating the highest single-race turnover of 2023 so far. The combination of good field sizes, competitive races and a great mix of horses and jockeys from across the globe made the meeting a real spectacle for punters.”

World Pool’s next stop is Meydan Racecourse for the Dubai Super Saturday meeting on Saturday 4th March.