Lines of Battle scores UAE Derby win

March 30, 2013 at 11:06 AM
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DUBAI, United Arab Emirates, March 30 (UPI) -- Lines of Battle hit the lead at midstretch in Saturday's $2 million, Group 2 UAE Derby, turned back a challenge, and won by 1 1/2 lengths.

The victory was worth 100 points toward earning a start in the May 4 Kentucky Derby, should his connections decide to take that path rather than contest the English and Irish spring classics. Lines of Battle finished seventh in last fall's Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf at Santa Anita in his last previous start.

The race was a disappointment for the American runners hoping to use the Meydan Racecourse fixture as a stepping stone to the Kentucky Derby. Neither of the California-based colts, He's Had Enough nor Dice Flavor, was a factor in the race.

Lines of Battle, with Ryan Moore up for trainer Aidan O'Brien, hit the lead with about 300 meters to run in the 1,900-meters race over the all-weather track. He began to drift out and Irish runner Elleval ranged up along his inside. With a final burst, Lines of Battle resumed a straight course and drew clear again.

Secret Number, previously unbeaten in two starts for Godolphin Racing, finished third.

The race was clocked in a slow 2:02.05.

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