Dubai World Cup

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Dubai World Cup
Group 1 race
The world's richest horse race
LocationMeydan Racecourse
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Race typeThoroughbred - Flat racing
WebsiteOfficial website
Race information
Distance2,000 metres (about 10 furlongs)
QualificationNorthern Hemisphere 4yo+ & Southern Hemisphere 3yo+
WeightSH 3yo: 54.5kg.
NH & SH 4yo+: 57kg
PurseUS$12 million (2019 race)
Dubai World Cup
Royal blue White, orange stars on sleeves, white cap, orange star Blue, red hoop, blue, red hoop sleeves, red cap
Thunder Snow Gronkowski Gunnevera
The Meydan grandstand
The parade ring during the Dubai World Cup meeting
A UAE supporter at the Dubai World Cup

The Dubai World Cup (Arabic:كأس دبي العالمي) is a Thoroughbred horse race held annually since 1996 and contested at the Meydan Racecourse (Arabic:ميدان) which in Arabic suggests a place where people congregate and compete, a sort of meeting point[1] in the Emirate of Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The race is operated through the Emirates Racing Authority (ERA) whose Chairman is Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Presidential Affairs of the United Arab Emirates. It offers nine races, consisting of eight Thoroughbred contests and one Purebred Arabian contest.

The Dubai World Cup, the final race of Dubai World Cup night, was created in 1996[2] by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai who owns Darley Stud & Godolphin Racing, one of the world's leading Thoroughbred breeding and racing operations.

Annually held on the last Saturday in March, the Dubai World Cup is part of the Dubai World Cup Night of races. Since its 2019 running, the race has carried a purse of $12 million, regaining its place as the world's richest horse race, a record held by the Pegasus World Cup in 2017 and 2018. It is a Group 1 flat race on dirt for Northern Hemisphere Thoroughbred four-year-olds & up and for Southern Hemisphere Thoroughbred three-year-olds & up run over a distance of 2,000 metres (about 10 furlongs) in late March. It was held at Nad Al Sheba Racecourse before 2009. In 2010, the Dubai World Cup was first held at the new Meydan Racecourse on March 27, on all-weather surface known as Tapeta. However, it was held as dirt race again in 2015 due to the high maintenance cost and being an unpopular condition among American participants.

The race's first winner was the future United States Hall of Fame Thoroughbred Cigar, owned by Allen E. Paulson. A plaque honoring that horse hangs outside the barn of Bill Mott at Belmont Park.

In 2006 the Dubai World Cup was broadcast live on TVG Network and HRTV and taped later for showing on ABC. It was the first time that the race was shown on national TV in the United States.[citation needed] The 2020 event was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[3]


Speed record:

Most wins:

  • 2 - Thunder Snow (2018, 2019)

Most wins by an owner:

Most wins by a jockey:

Most wins by a trainer:


Year Winner Foaled Trained Owned Age Jockey Trainer Owner Time
1996 Cigar US US US 6 Jerry Bailey William I. Mott Allen E. Paulson 2:03.84
1997 Singspiel IRE GB UAE 5 Jerry Bailey Michael Stoute Sheikh Mohammed 2:01.91
1998 Silver Charm US US US 4 Gary Stevens Bob Baffert Bob & Beverly Lewis 2:04.29
1999 Almutawakel GB UAE UAE 4 Richard Hills Saeed bin Suroor Hamdan Al Maktoum 2:00.65
2000 Dubai Millennium GB UAE UAE 4 Frankie Dettori Saeed bin Suroor Godolphin Racing 1:59.50
2001 Captain Steve US US US 4 Jerry Bailey Bob Baffert Michael E. Pegram 2:00.47
2002 Street Cry IRE UAE UAE 4 Jerry Bailey Saeed bin Suroor Godolphin Racing 2:01.18
2003 Moon Ballad IRE UAE UAE 4 Frankie Dettori Saeed bin Suroor Godolphin Racing 2:00.48
2004 Pleasantly Perfect US US US 6 Alex Solis Richard Mandella Diamond A Racing Corp. 2:00.24
2005 Roses in May US US US 5 John Velazquez Dale L. Romans Ken & Sarah Ramsey 2:02.17
2006 Electrocutionist US UAE UAE 5 Frankie Dettori Saeed bin Suroor Godolphin Racing 2:01.32
2007 Invasor ARG US UAE 5 Fernando Jara Kiaran McLaughlin Hamdan Al Maktoum 1:59:97
2008 Curlin US US US 4 Robby Albarado Steve Asmussen Stonestreet Stables/Midnight Cry Stbl 2:00.15
2009 Well Armed US US US 6 Aaron Gryder Eoin G. Harty WinStar Farm LLC 2:01.01
2010 Glória de Campeão BRA FRA BRA 7 T. J. Pereira Pascal Bary Stud Estrela Energia 2:03.83
2011 Victoire Pisa JPN JPN JPN 4 Mirco Demuro Katsuhiko Sumii Yoshimi Ichikawa 2:05.94
2012 Monterosso GB UAE UAE 5 Mickael Barzalona Mahmood al Zarooni Godolphin Racing 2:02.67
2013 Animal Kingdom US US AUS/US 5 Joel Rosario Graham Motion Arrowfield Stud & Team Valor 2:03.21
2014 African Story GB[4] UAE UAE 7 Silvestre de Sousa Saeed bin Suroor Godolphin Racing 2:01.61
2015 Prince Bishop IRE UAE UAE 8 William Buick Saeed bin Suroor Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Maktoum 2:03.24
2016 California Chrome US US US 5 Victor Espinoza Art Sherman California Chrome LLC 2:01.83
2017 Arrogate US US KSA 4 Mike E. Smith Bob Baffert Juddmonte Farms 2:02.53
2018 Thunder Snow IRE UAE UAE 4 Christophe Soumillon Saeed bin Suroor Godolphin 2:01.38
2019 Thunder Snow IRE UAE UAE 5 Christophe Soumillon Saeed bin Suroor Godolphin 2:03.58
2020 Cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[3]

2020 running[edit]

The 25th edition of the race was scheduled to take place on 28 March 2020. On 12 March, it was announced that the race would go ahead as planned, but with no spectators in attendance, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, on 22 March, a further statement was released, announcing that the race had been cancelled, and that the 25th anniversary celebrations would be postponed until the 2021 running.[5][6]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Meaning of “meydan” ميدان,, 1 April 2012, accessed 1 April 2012.
  2. ^ Appena terminata la Dubai World Cup 2012,, 1 April 2012, accessed 1 April 2012.
  3. ^ a b "Dubai World Cup: One of the world's richest horse races is postponed over the coronavirus pandemic". BBC Sport. 22 March 2020. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
  4. ^ "African Story pedigree". 2014-03-07. Retrieved 2014-03-29.
  5. ^ "Dubai World Cup to be held without spectators". Gulf News. Retrieved 27 March 2020.
  6. ^ "2020 Dubai World Cup night is called off at Meydan". Gulf News. Retrieved 27 March 2020.
  7. ^ Hamad, Marwa. "Sia dons her wig during theatrical Dubai gig", Gulf News, March 26, 2017

External links[edit]