Well, here’s a reminder as to why there is justifiably a bit of expectation and excitement surrounding the Godolphin runner’s pending return to action in the coming months.
In 2018, amongst other successes, the Saeed bin Suroor’s trained son of Dubawi won the $7 million Dubai Turf over 1800m at Meydan in Dubai, the Group 1 Dellmayr Preis over 2000m in Germany and the $1 million, Group 1 Caulfield Stakes over 2000m in Australia … and, for good measure, after the Caulfield Stakes Benbatl finished second, two lengths behind Winx, in that wonderful race in the $5 million Cox Plate (the one in which Winx completed her magnificent fourth successive Cox Plate win).
After being given a long spell, only raced twice in 2019 winning the Group 2 Joel Stakes in September of that year.
Early in 2020, Benbatl added to his honour roll when he won the Singspiel Stakes and the Al Maktoum Challenge Round 2 in Dubai before going on to finish third in the Saudi Cup behind Maximum Security in February. He was then marked up as the ruling favourite to win Dubai World Cup in March, but that meeting was ultimately abandoned due to the Covid-19 crisis.
After a further break of seven months Benbatl resumed in the Joel Stakes, seeking to win that race for the second time, but he had to settle for third place.
He has not been seen in action since but, all things being equal, Saeed bin Suroor has already put the now seven-year-old’s name forward with regard to targeting another Dubal World Cup.
For the trainer, who himself has excelled at the Dubai World Cup meetings and who knows what it takes to win there, to already be thinking of that race indicates just how much Benbatl has pleased Saeed bin Suroor so far in these early stages of his comeback where he is now in full work.