1:50am (HK)/9:50pm (Dubai)

Right, we're off to enjoy some Janet Jackson. It's not quite Michael, but it is close. I've got "What Have You Done For Me Lately" in my head now. It's not necessarily soothing music, though, after Hong Kong's very disappointing evening. Thank you for joining us into the early hours of Sunday morning in Hong Kong, stay tuned to the South China Morning Post for all the wash-up and we will be front and centre at Sha Tin for the Easter Monday fixture.

1:48am (HK)/9:48pm (Dubai)

Read Alan Aitken's summary of the night - it makes for pretty sad reading:

Dreams dissolve: Hong Kong sprinters in double disappointing desert effort

Gun Pit follows form of the night finishing meekly in US$10 million Dubai World Cup

1:45am (HK)/9:45pm (Dubai)

And as fireworks go off in the background, it's time for a recap:

  • Peniaphobia finished third in the Al Quoz Sprint behind Buffering, with Not Listenin'tome weakening into eighth
  • The Golden Shaheen was a disaster for Hong Kong, with Super Jockey the best of our competitors in fifth behind Muarrab. Rich Tapestry (seventh), Domineer (eighth), Master Kochanwong (ninth) were the last three across the line, with Kifaah pulled up.
  • Gun Pit finished a long last, 36 lengths behind California Chrome.

All in all, a pretty deflating night - although it was exciting to see California Chrome and Buffering win, even if I opposed them both!

1:43am (HK)/9:43pm (Dubai)

1:40am (HK)/9:40pm (Dubai)

The Star-Spangled Banner rings out for California Chrome. The American anthem is pretty rousing, a few patriots here with tears in their eyes. Better than the last time a Kentucky Derby winner took out the Dubai World Cup - they played the Australian anthem for Animal Kingdom after John Messara's Arrowfield Stud bought a controlling share before his Dubai campaign.

1:35am (HK)/9:35pm (Dubai)

The internet is starting to fall apart with the world's media filing in to report on California Chrome's success. Hopefully it doesn't conk out...we still have Janet Jackson to come!

1:30am (HK)/9:30pm (Dubai)

Racing editor Alan Aitken gives it to Buffering - but in a points decision.

1:28am (HK)/9:28pm (Dubai)

Not sure who receives the award for the biggest reception tonight - Buffering or California Chrome.

1:23am (HK)/9:23pm (Dubai)

We're hearing there was a bit of drama before the Dubai World Cup. Apparently, Mike De Kock, trainer of Mubtaahij, was not allowed into the paddock before the feature. Instead, he gave his instructions to Christophe Soumillon across the gate. Didn't hinder the horse, ran a fine second, but still...not good!

DUBAI WORLD CUP (Group One, 2,000m)
1 - CALIFORNIA CHROME (Victor Espinoza)
2 - MUBTAAHIJ (Christophe Soumillon)
3 - HOPPERTUNITY (Flavien Prat)
4 - SPECIAL FIGHTER (Fernando Jara)

What a win!!! Was willing to take him on beforehand, but maybe I can become a Chromie yet. He had that race a long way out, he has toyed with them. It's been a long path back for California Chrome after finishing second to Prince Bishop last year, but the 2014 Kentucky Derby winner - one of the most popular horses in the world - proved he still had that deft touch. And how big has the year been for Victor Espinoza? An American Triple Crown, a Breeders' Cup Classic and a Dubai World Cup. Sensational times.

1:10am (HK)/9:10pm (Dubai)

Racing in the Dubai World Cup! Gun Pit is up in fourth, but he looks to be overracing a touch.

1:08am (HK)/9:08pm (Dubai)

Starting to load up. Almost ready for the world's richest race. Promises to be a cracker.

1:05am (HK)/9:05pm (Dubai)

They are getting ready behind the gates for the Dubai World Cup. Happy to stick with Frosted to win the Dubai World Cup from Mshawish, did like Keen Ice in there but the way the track is playing is going to make it tough for him. The one that could be interesting is Vadamos. Have to take on California Chrome in what is looking a stiff 2,000m race.

1:00am (HK)/9:00pm (Dubai)

Sometimes, you can't match the passion of racing fans worldwide...

12:57am (HK)/8:57pm (Dubai)

The big talk here is how Super Saturday form is holding up, despite looking questionable across the board beforehand. With that in mind, could Special Fighter cause the upset? Could Gun Pit find his way into the placings? It looked very iffy at the start of the night, but perhaps it's not so far-fetched now.

12:55am (HK)/8:55pm (Dubai)

They're in the paddock for the world's richest race, the US$10m Dubai World Cup. Hong Kong has the sole runner, Caspar Fownes-trained Gun Pit, but he's at long odds in most markets (save for the Hong Kong tote) and justifiably so. However, he's not without some sort of place hope.

12:48am (HK)/8:48am (Dubai)

Great view of the Sheema Classic from our vantage point. Just a shame we couldn't get the desired result.

12:47am (HK)/8:47pm (Dubai)

Also very happy for Roger Varian, only met him a couple of times but one of racing's good guys. Very measured, quite analytical, but a very nice guy.

12:42am (HK)/8:42pm (Dubai)

Watching the replay again, very strong staying performance by Postponed, can't take anything away from him. Still think the effort of Duramente was terrific and he'll be winning a big race on the world stage in no time at all. Last Impact also very good. The major players all turned up.

SHEEMA CLASSIC (Group One, 2,400m)
1. POSTPONED (Andrea Atzeni)
2. DURAMENTE (Mirco Demuro)
3. LAST IMPACT (Joao Moreira)
4. HIGHLAND REEL (Ryan Moore)

The pre-race issues obviously no help for Duramente, he runs a bold race but simply can't match Postponed. Don't be surprised if there is a rematch between the two at Chantilly in October, in the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe.

12:31am (HK)/8:31pm (Dubai)

Racing in the Sheema Classic. Highland Reel leads at a steady tempo, gets it pretty easy though.

12:30am (HK)/8:30pm (Dubai)

Duramente will race barefoot on his off-side fore foot. Loading up now.

12:27am (HK)/8:27pm (Dubai)

Uh oh. Duramente has come back to the paddock. Shoe adjustment.

12:24am (HK)/8:24pm (Dubai)

OUCH! That's got to hurt.

12:19am (HK)/8:19pm (Dubai)

Want to know why The Blue Eye is named as such? Because he has blue eyes, rare in a thoroughbred. True.

12:13am (HK)/8:13pm (Dubai)

Entering the paddock for the Sheema Classic, and what is arguably the race of the night. Expect a battle royale between three big guns - Japan's Duramente, winner of their Derby, Ireland's Highland Reel, the Hong Kong Vase winner, and England's Postponed, who took out the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes last year.

It seems most are in one of these three camps - and we are firmly, FIRMLY, in the Duramente camp. 

12:05am (HK)/8:05pm (Dubai)

Unfortunately, my phone has stopped being able to post photos...so very thankful for girlfriends currently!

12:00am (HK)/8:00pm (Dubai)

Wasn't quite on the same level as Just A Way's romp, but still, Real Steel joins Just A Way and Admire Moon as Japanese horses to win the Dubai Turf.

11:58pm (HK)/7:58pm (Dubai)

DUBAI TURF (1,800m, Group One)
1 - REAL STEEL (Ryan Moore)
2 - EURO CHARLINE (Frankie Dettori)
3 - TRYSTER (William Buick)
4 - ERTIJAAL (Douglas Whyte)

It's Japan again. The turn of foot Real Steel shows to win? Outstanding. Japanese middle distance form is top notch. And what about Duramente coming up? He's a superior horse to Real Steel, hope to see him crush his rivals. Slashing run Euro Charline, solid Tryster, but that was your race. The clear disappointment was Intilaaq, who was all over the place.

11:51pm (HK)/7:51pm (Dubai)

Racing in the Dubai Turf.

11:50pm (HK)/7:50pm (Dubai)

Loading for the Dubai Turf. 

11:47pm (HK)/7:47pm (Dubai)

They're behind the gates. This race definitely missing something with the absence of Solow, injured and unable to defend his crown. Still, go Tryster!

11:45pm (HK)/7:45pm (Dubai)

In case you missed it - Master Kochanwong, a long last in the Golden Shaheen, will be heading for Douglas Whyte's farm in Italy after tonight's run. 

End of the line for some but just the beginning for others in the Hong Kong contingent at Meydan

11:43pm (HK)/7:43pm (Dubai)

While we are on random thoughts...the hommus and tabouli being served up by the Dubai Racing Club is terrific. Just saying. Yes, I've become one of those Hong Kong journalists who writes about the food served up by race clubs. Oh dear.

11:42pm (HK)/7:42pm (Dubai)

Perhaps the tweet of the evening. From the Daily Racing Form's Marcus Hersh, an American-based international expert.

11:40pm (HK)/7:40pm (Dubai)

Keep an eye on this race, traditionally throws up a runner or two for either the Audemars Piguet QE II Cup or the Champions Mile.

11:36pm (HK)/7:36pm (Dubai)

Intilaaq is walking around...rather awkwardly, it must be said. He's very excitable.

11:32pm (HK)/7:32pm (Dubai)

It does look a race in three, this year's Dubai Turf. All three are promising types, all three have plenty of upside and it's impossible to predict where they will all be in 12 months time.

Real Steel drew awkwardly, but looks one of Japan's up and comers. Intilaaq looks a Group One winner in waiting. Tryster has flourished this Dubai carnival and has an electric turn of foot.

In the end, we stuck with Tryster, but any of the three could win without surprising.

11:27pm (HK)/7:27pm (Dubai)

The opening ceremony comes to a slightly anticlimactic ending. The crowd begins to applaud after it becomes clear it's finished...30 seconds or so after it actually finished. Now for the Dubai Turf, the first of the US$6 million turf features.

11:20pm (HK)/7:20pm (Dubai)

Just saw a photo of the cut to Super Jockey's left fore foot. Wow. Not one for the squeamish. Blood pouring out. 

11:10pm (HK)/7:10pm (Dubai)

11:05pm (HK)/7:05pm (Dubai)

This opening ceremony has begun. Quite weird, as always, but definitely a spectacle.

11:03pm (HK)/7:03pm (Dubai)

If anyone wants to relive the pain...

11:00pm (HK)/7:00pm (Dubai)

Apparently, Super Jockey lost a shoe in the Golden Shaheen, emerged with a cut to his foot. Admirable effort regardless.

10:57pm (HK)/6:57pm (Dubai)

Well, at least there is a little bit of a break now. A chance to eat and watch this incredible opening ceremony.

10:55pm (HK)/6:55pm (Dubai)

Watching a replay now. Domineer was outpaced early. Master Kochanwong was beaten at the 600m. Rich Tapestry weakened badly from the top of the straight. Super Jockey couldn't cope with the fast early pace. Quite simply, a disappointing race for Hong Kong.

10:52pm (HK)/6:52pm (Dubai)

Well, it's hard not to feel a bit flat after that. X Y Jet was beaten, but only just - pretty courageous effort really. Looks like we were wrong labelling him a greyhound.

GOLDEN SHAHEEN (Group One, 1,200m)
1 - MUARRAB (Paul Hanagan)
2 - X Y JET (Emisael Jaramillo)
3 - MORAWIJ (Chris Hayes)
4 - REYNALDOTHEWIZARD (Richard Mullen)

Nothing short of disappointing from Hong Kong. Rich Tapestry, Master Kochanwong just can't cope with the amount of speed X Y Jet puts on. Super Jockey is off the bit chasing. Who knows where Domineer is? In the end, with four of the 10 runners, they can't even hit the board. The best performance was from Super Jockey in fifth, but looks like Hong Kong might have filled eighth, ninth, 10th. Ignominious. 

10:45pm (HK)/6:45pm (Dubai)

Racing in the Golden Shaheen! And Hong Kong is figuring in the speed early with Rich Tapestry, Master Kochanwong pressuring X Y Jet.

10:42pm (HK)/6:42pm (Dubai)

Just need to get X Y Jet beaten. Looks a greyhound, reckon the long Meydan straight will find him out.

10:40pm (HK)/6:40pm (Dubai)

These races come around very quickly. We're already five minutes out from the Golden Shaheen, when four Hong Kong horses take on the might of America...and the locals.

Thought Domineer was a silly price earlier, but the way the track is playing...let's see.

10:35pm (HK)/6:35pm (Dubai)

The Australian reaction to Buffering's Al Quoz Sprint win on Twitter has been quite something.

10:32pm (HK)/6:32pm (Dubai)

Just heard Terry Spargo's call of the Al Quoz. "Life is great in the Sunshine State." What a line, what a call. He's definitely one of the world's premier racing broadcasters.

10:30pm (HK)/6:30pm (Dubai)

10:28pm (HK)/6:28pm (Dubai)

The silence is deafening on the video...at least from the person taking the video. Guilty as charged.

10:25pm (HK)/6:25pm (Dubai)

Plenty of Australians here. Doubt you could have more people in the winning photo! And the cheers for Buffering's trainer Robert Heathcote and jockey Damien Browne are deafening. Putting my parochial Australian hat on (the one I clearly tossed aside when potting Buffering), Australians really do know how to add life to a party.

10:22pm (HK)/6:22pm (Dubai)

Buffering joins Ortensia as an Australian winner of the Al Quoz Sprint. He is now heading for Hong Kong and the Chairman's Sprint Prize on May 1, then Royal Ascot may follow. 

10:20pm (HK)/6:20pm (Dubai)

Looks like Not Listenin'tome's finished about eighth, expected him to be trailing the speed but instead he's up there vying for it.

AL QUOZ SPRINT (Group One, 1,000m)
1 - BUFFERING (Damien Browne)
2 - ERTIJAAL (Paul Hanagan)
3 - PENIAPHOBIA (Joao Moreira)
4 - JUNGLE CAT (William Buick)

Not Listenin'tome drops off, we're out of luck, but Peniaphobia looks a great show! But no, he's outgunned by the Australian veteran Buffering, who holds off the charge of Ertijaal to win. He's arguably Australia's most popular horse, and the chant of "Aussie, Aussie, Aussie, Oi, Oi, Oi" rings out. Quite torn - happy for connections, disappointed for doubting. 

10:10pm (HK)/6:10pm (Dubai)

Racing in the Al Quoz Sprint! Peniaphobia, Not Listenin'tome both up there early.

10:09pm (HK)/6:09pm (Dubai)

Loading up. C'mon Not Listenin'tome, c'mon Hong Kong!

10:06pm (HK)/6:06pm (Dubai)

This is Sole Power's sixth Dubai World Cup night. Talk about warhorses - he's definitely one of them. Can he go back-to-back?

10:05pm (HK)/6:05pm (Dubai)

Great to see old Australian warhorse Buffering here. He's still racing in terrific form, albeit probably at a level below his best. He'll be heading to Hong Kong for the Chairman's Sprint after this.

10:02pm (HK)/6:02pm (Dubai)

Looks like the favourite in most markets will be Ertijaal - one of two Ertijaals racing this evening. This is the Irish-bred Ertijaal, who has won two races over this course and distance very impressively. The other runs, the Australian-bred Ertijaal, runs in the Dubai Turf later in the evening.

9:59pm (HK)/5:59pm (Dubai)

Getting a bit nervous now, because although I've been Peniaphobia's biggest fan all season, I've really become a believer that the Al Quoz is Not Listenin'tome's race to lose. As much as 10-1 was bet earlier this week. Now shorter. Give him strength!

9:57pm (HK)/5:57pm (Dubai)

Read Alan Aitken's pieces about some of the Hong Kong runners from throughout the week:

Hong Kong sprinters poised for more glory in Dubai

Trainer John Moore hopes Al Quoz Sprint can open doors for Not Listenin’tome

Caspar Fownes plays it safe as Gun Pit draws three for Dubai World Cup

9:55pm (HK)/5:55pm (Dubai)

Pic of the crowds watching the Dubai Gold Cup from our resident photographer, Kenneth Chan.

9:53pm (HK)/5:53pm (Dubai)

Sheikh Mohammed always stands out in a crowd...even here.

9:52pm (HK)/5:52pm (Dubai)

Next up is the Al Quoz Sprint over the straight 1,000m. Hong Kong's first two runners for the night are up - Not Listenin'tome for the Moores (trainer John and rider Ryan) and Peniaphobia for Tony Cruz and Joao Moreira.

9:50pm (HK)/5:50pm (Dubai)

9:48pm (HK)/5:48pm (Dubai)

Watch Lani win the UAE Derby. 

9:45pm (HK)/5:45pm (Dubai)

And the trainer Mikio Matsunaga confirms Lani will head for the Kentucky Derby. Expect the mad Japanese fans to be up at the crack of dawn.

9:42pm (HK)/5:42pm (Dubai)

Thought Joao might have been home for us with Yu Change! So close.

UAE DERBY (Group Two, 1,900m)
1 - LANI (Yutaka Take)
2 - POLAR RIVER (Patrick Dobbs)
3 - YU CHANGE (Joao Moreira)
4 - VALE DORI (Christophe Soumillon)

Ugly, ugly race but the grey Lani gives Japan a first UAE Derby win under Yutaka Take. They had said before the race they wanted to head for the American Triple Crown - the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes, Belmont Stakes. Now, he has qualifying points so expect him to head to Churchill Downs in early May.

9:35pm (HK)/5:35pm (Dubai)

Racing in the UAE Derby! And all chasing that lead too...

9:32pm (HK)/5:32pm (Dubai)

First issue of the night. The internet has crashed! But we are back on board now. Just in time for the UAE Derby. Polar River should be winning...but if she doesn't win, look for a big run from Japan's Yu Change with Joao Moreira aboard.

9:20pm (HK)/5:20pm (Dubai)

No words...

9:12pm (HK)/5:12pm (Dubai)

The welcome to the ruler of the United Arab Emirates and the founder of Godolphin, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum, begins. The flag of the UAE has been raised, the anthem rings out, and now the races can begin....errrrr, sorry, they are already three races down. Of course, the bigger ceremony is before race seven, the Dubai Turf. That's something not to be missed.

9:09pm (HK)/5:09pm (Dubai)

The relief on Alain de Royer-Dupre's face is quite something. A slight show of emotion from the French master.

9:05pm (HK)/5:05pm (Dubai)

Quite some effort to win the Gold Cup despite hitting his head badly on his way to Dubai. A few hoping to see Vazirabad in Melbourne come the end of the European season.

9:02pm (HK)/5:02pm (Dubai)

Apologies for the commentary over the top...at least there is no excitable screaming.

DUBAI GOLD CUP (Group Two, 3,200m)
1 - VAZIRABAD (Christophe Soumillon)
2 - BIG ORANGE (Jamie Spencer)
3 - HAAFAGUINEA (James Doyle)
4 - SUEGIOO (Paul Hanagan)

He's done it! Forget the travel, forget the bad start, he's made up a stack of ground to nail Big Orange, last year's Melbourne Cup fifth, who fought on gamely. Who knows, the winner could find himself at Flemington in November - and maybe even Sha Tin in December?

8:55pm (HK)/4:55pm (Dubai)

Gates fly in the Dubai Gold Cup. And oh no, Vazirabad's bombed it from the inside at the 3,200m start. Certerach, Big Orange open up by a big margin by the post the first time.

8:54pm (HK)/4:54pm (Dubai)

Loading for the Dubai Gold Cup. Come on Vazirabad!

8:49pm (HK)/4:49pm (Dubai)

Couple of pictures from the yard:

8:45pm (HK)/4:45pm (Dubai)

I really, really, REALLY liked Vazirabad for the Dubai Gold Cup...but talk all week has been that he travelled to Dubai poorly, and trainer Alain de Royer-Dupre has just given an interview where he has potted the horse. Hopefully, the handler is wrong - but he is a master. It should still be a French victory either way - if not Vazirabad, then Manatee.

8:40pm (HK)/4:40pm (Dubai)

Now up is the Dubai Gold Cup, a race that has had quite a bit of controversy in the few short years it has been running. Who can forget the time it was run twice in 2012, or the Cavalryman protest/no protest in 2014? Hopefully have nothing of that sort tonight.

8:35pm (HK)/4:35pm (Dubai)

Interesting to note that the price on American speedster X Y Jet has just crunched in the UK now that it appears it is a speed-biased track. The odds about the Hong Kong horses have definitely drifted.

8:30pm (HK)/4:30pm (Dubai)

Frankie Dettori returns on English visitor Sloane Avenue and says the horse may have put his back out. He has had a number of issues as is, disappointing for Jeremy Noseda and connections after the horse charged into second last year.

8:26pm (HK)/4:26pm (Dubai)

Watch our view of the Godolphin Mile. A bit of a sigh...

GODOLPHIN MILE (Group Two, 1,600m)
1 - ONE MAN BAND (Sam Hitchcott)
2 - FAULKNER (Dane O'Neill)
3 - COOL COWBOY (Patrick Dobbs)
4 - MARKING (James Doyle)

But they can't catch Doug Watson's One Man Band. He wins the Godolphin Mile in a canter, and it is a 1-2-3 for leading local handler Watson! And the Hong Kong contingent let out a groan...it looked like another track that is biased for speed, like Super Saturday. Move up X Y Jet. Relegate some others.

8:21pm (HK)/4:21pm (Dubai)

Marking flopped out of the stalls. 

8:20pm (HK)/4:20pm (Dubai)

Racing in the Godolphin Mile! And for those who are counting, it's our first "gates fly" from caller Terry Spargo. Have a shot.

8:19pm (HK)/4:19pm (Dubai)

Hong Kong punters will be familiar with Marking dumping the rider as a hot favourite when Rich Tapestry won the Al Shindagha Sprint.

He was heading for the Golden Shaheen, but a dour effort in winning a handicap since convinced Godolphin to switch him to the race named for them.

He despised the kickback, so let's see how he goes here.

8:16pm (HK)/4:16pm (Dubai)

Some pics from the yard before the Godolphin Mile.

Heading out for the Godolphin Mile, the first of the thoroughbred races. Of course, Dan Excel was due to run here for Hong Kong, but didn't make the trip and was retired.

8:10pm (HK)/4:10pm (Dubai)

Just heard Oli Bell from Racing UK refer to this as a "baking hot day" - it's a beautiful 29 degrees and sunny. Hot by English standards, but absolutely perfect conditions here.

8:05pm (HK)/4:05pm (Dubai)

Want to know who you should be backing in Dubai tonight? Read my thoughts on who to back in five of the major markets around the world - the international tote (US and South Africa), the Hong Kong tote, the French tote (PMU), the New South Wales tote in Australia and the UK bookies.

Betting on the Dubai World Cup meeting? The Griffin's best bets, by region

8:00pm (HK)/4:00pm (Dubai)

Some interesting prices on the Hong Kong tote at the moment...

The Al Quoz Sprint, with two strong Hong Kong chances, looks a great betting race outside them - even if we are firmly in the Not Listenin'tome camp. But Sole Power 22-1, Goldream 41-1, Buffering 19-1, Muthmir 50-1, Lady Shipman 17-1...wow.

Same with the Golden Shaheen, where Muarrab 11-1 and Confrontation 9-1 are quite big, particularly the latter.

Euro Charline at 30-1 seems rather big in the Dubai Turf.

And with Gun Pit a ridiculous 4-1 in Hong Kong for the World Cup, it has created value primarily around Mshawish at 30-1 and Hoppertunity at 25-1.

7:55pm (HK)/3:55pm (Dubai)

Right, might as well throw some selections in for the eight thoroughbred races. Take note, for those in Hong Kong, betting on the card starts with the UAE Derby:

Godolphin Mile: 1. MAFTOOL, 2. Marking, 3. Sloane Avenue, 4. Faulkner
Dubai Gold Cup: 1. VAZIRABAD, 2. Manatee, 3. Suegioo, 4. Big Orange
UAE Derby: 1. POLAR RIVER, 2. Yu Change, 3. Vale Dori, 4. Lani
Al Quoz Sprint: 1. NOT LISTENIN'TOME (Best Bet), 2. Ertijaal, 3. Peniaphobia, 4. Muthmir
Golden Shaheen: 1. DOMINEER, 2. Super Jockey, 3. Confrontation, 4. Rich Tapestry
Dubai Turf: 1. TRYSTER, 2. Intilaaq, 3. Real Steel, 4. Flamboyant
Sheema Classic: 1. DURAMENTE, 2. Highland Reel, 3. Postponed, 4. Last Impact
Dubai World Cup: 1. FROSTED (Next Best), 2. Mshawish, 3. Keen Ice, 4. Gun Pit

7:50pm (HK)/3:50pm (Dubai)

Plenty of surprised media people as Thakif drifts out and gives away certain victory.

DUBAI KAHAYLA CLASSIC (Purebred Arabian Group One, 2,000m)
1 - AF MATHMOON (Dane O'Neill)
2 - TM THUNDER STRUCK (Olivier Peslier) 
3 - THAKIF (Silvestre de Sousa)
4 - HANDASSA (Paul Hanagan)

Wow! Crazy start to the night. Thakif looks home and hosed but he drifts wildly off the track and Af Mathmoon sneaks through to win. Sheikh Hamdan wins, but not with the horse most expect.

7:45pm (HK)/3:45pm (Dubai)

Racing in the Kahayla Classic! They do look like they are crawling. That's Arabians for you though.

7:44pm (HK)/3:44pm (Dubai)

And Handassa is apparently very short - where you can get on, that is. And Hong Kong ain't one of those places!

7:38pm (HK)/3:38pm (Dubai)

We are seven minutes away from the first race, the Dubai Kahayla Classic for the purebred Arabians. Stayed away from this race, but I've long been a fan of Versac Py - he ran the first year I was in Dubai in 2012. However, it seems all the purebred Arabian experts are with Handassa for Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid al-Maktoum. 

7:34pm (HK)/3:34pm (Dubai)

7:28pm (HK)/3:28pm (Dubai)

The times you need to know for tonight:

10:10pm (HK) - the Al Quoz Sprint (featuring Peniaphobia, Not Listenin'tome)
10:45pm (HK) - the Golden Shaheen (featuring Rich Tapestry, Super Jockey, Domineer, Master Kochanwong)
1:00am (HK) - the Dubai World Cup (featuring Gun Pit)

It's also interesting to watch the Dubai Turf at 11:45pm (HK), featuring a number of horses likely to come to Hong Kong next month, as well as the Dubai Sheema Classic at 12:20am (HK), featuring Hong Kong Vase winner Highland Reel against King George winner Postponed and Japanese Derby Duramente. 

7:22pm (HK)/3:22pm (Dubai)

Welcome to Dubai and the world's richest race night, the Dubai World Cup meeting at Meydan. Over the next few hours, horses from Hong Kong will join some of the top thoroughbreds on the planet in racing for a share of US$30m across eight races - with a rich race for Arabian gallopers to boot too. The most interesting thing about tonight is the mix of formlines - and it proves an analyst's dream. The night builds up to the US$10 million feature, the Dubai World Cup over 2,000m on dirt at 1am Hong Kong time, and with a rare Sha Tin-based runner in the race in Caspar Fownes' Gun Pit, it's worth staying up for. Before then, though, there are plenty of races to keep an eye on. Join our live blog as we hope to find a winner or two, and also bring you some of the news, views, analysis and colour from the world's richest meeting.