In the days leading up to the $20 million Saudi Cup at King Abdulaziz Racetrack in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on Feb. 20, usracing.com will profile the contenders in the world’s richest horse race. The profiles will be updated with odds, post positions and jockeys following the post-position draw on Wednesday [Feb. 17].
By Lynne Snierson
The paternal grandson of Giant’s Causeway was purchased privately from Ed Dunlop’s yard in 2019 by HH Isa bin Salman Al Khalifa of Bahrain and transferred to the formidable John Gosden. At the time, the target for Global Giant was the second running of the Bahrain International Trophy race in November 2020. His Highness, the eldest son of the Bahrain crown prince and second in the line of succession to the throne, is one of the organizers of that race.
Since joining Gosden, the horse has won two of four starts. In his last start in the Bahraini race, he was up against an accomplished international field that included five Group 1 winners and gave a fine account of himself under Frankie Dettori. Global Giant closed willingly to just miss and was the runner-up to the locally trained Simsir.
Nonetheless, that race was contested over the turf, and at 1 ¼ miles. Global Giant has been successful on the grass and the all-weather tracks in England. If Gosden, who will saddle Mishriff in the Saudi Cup, decides to also run Global Giant here instead of the Middle Distance Turf Cup on the undercard, the horse must handle the surface switch and shorten up in distance in the 1 1/8 miles Saudi Cup, which is a one-turn race.
2021 Saudi Cup Profile: Global Giant
Post position: TBD
Trainer: John Gosden
Jockey: Frankie Dettori
Owner: Al Adiyat Racing (Isa bin Salman Al Khalifa)
Age: 6 (horse)
Career record: 17-4-3-3
Career earnings: $142,051 (US)
Top Equibase speed figure: N/A
Pedigree: Shamardal- Aniseed, by Dalakhani
Running style: Off the pace
Notes: Three starts back, on July 19, 2020 Global Giant beat 2021 Saudi Cup entrant Extra Exclusive in the Steventon Stakes in England. Next time out on Aug. 8 he was third behind winner Extra Exclusive in the Rose of Lancaster Stakes (G3) … Gosden’s son and assistant, Thady, often travels with Global Giant and is directly involved in his race preparations … John Gosden is considered one of the finest and most accomplished international trainers of his generation with more than 100 G1 winners and 3,000 overall victories in Europe, the United States, the Middle East, and Asia. He is based at Clarehaven Stables in Newmarket, England. His prestigious wins include the Breeders’ Cup Classic, the Epsom Derby, the Epsom Oaks, the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes and the King George VI Stakes.