Friday’s Lucky 15 – Our Best Bets For Racing On February 18

With UK racing in doubt, Meydan's Dubai Carnival takes centre stage on Friday.With UK racing in doubt, Meydan's Dubai Carnival takes centre stage on Friday.

Horse Racing Tips on Thursday, February 17

With the UK action all under serious doubt due to oncoming storms, our editor has shifted their focus to Dubai. Four selections from Meydan contribute to our 3,187/1 Lucky 15 top tips.


Positivity (2.00 Meydan)

The three at the head of the handicap look set to dominate this opener at Meydan and POSITIVITY is the one among that trio who stands out.

Doug O’Neill possesses one of the most powerful yards in the United States and has already recorded multiple winners at this year’s Dubai Carnival. This four-year-old was disappointing on his first run after a gelding operation (also his first start in Dubai), but can be expected to come on for that.

Equally, that was a 6f Group 3 and his best form in his home country came over 7f, the trip he’ll face on Friday. He should settle far better and find this company much less taxing.


He’s A Balter (3.45 Meydan)

Lazuli is an odds-on favourite here, but he does not appeal as a particularly convincing one after making his return three weeks ago.

He was still a solid enough second in Listed company when tried over 6f, but Will Clarken’s HE’S A BALTER ran in almost as competitive a contest over course and distance on the same card and recorded the same finishing position.

It is true he would have to step up on that form, but the return to 5f is definitely a plus based on his form from Australia, his home country. He certainly looks a backable each-way price to go from the front.


Manobo (4.20 Meydan)

There are four odds-on favourites in the six live races at Meydan tomorrow. Only Lazuli looked distinctly opposable, with MANOBO the best-priced of the trio who remain.

Though a clear favourite, he would be the best in a combination play such as a Lucky 15. His form stacks up as a near certain winner here too: he is unbeaten, including back-to-back victories in Listed and Group 2 company the last twice.

He also beat Derby runner-up Mojo Star on his debut and Charlie Appleby’s success rate with horses in Dubai is always outstanding. This big, imposing type should have so much more to offer now as a four-year-old and he can be expected to have progressed even further.


Ascot Brass (4.55 Meydan)

The fact that this filly is trained in Norway by Niels Petersen has surely contributed to her price being bigger than it should be in this concluding handicap.

ASCOT BRASS ran a storming race at 40/1 on her return to Dubai in mid-January, being beaten only ¾ length in Group 2 company. She was beating some very useful horses that day and surely ran beyond her mark of 98 there.

She will be racing against some smart types here too in handicap company, but the race could pan out well for her to sneak closer from the rear, as she did so successfully last time.