(MENAFN -Khaleej Times) appleby took over as a frontline trainer alongside saeed bin suroor from mahmood al zarooni who was banned for eight years in april 2013 for administering banned anabolic steroids to 22 racehorses at moulton paddocks in newmarket
African story is one of the favourites to bring glory to godolphin. — kt file
Charlie appleby believes godolphin can begin their upcoming european season with a clean slate as the al quoz-based stable approaches the one-year anniversary since a doping scandal engulfed its entire operation.
Appleby took over as a frontline trainer alongside saeed bin suroor from mahmood al zarooni who was banned for eight years in april 2013 for administering banned anabolic steroids to 22 racehorses at moulton paddocks in newmarket.
His highness shaikh mohammed bin rashid al maktoum vice-president and prime minister of the uae and the ruler of dubai has since vowed that al zarooni will never work with horses again.
It’s against that bleak backdrop that appleby started his work at godolphin but -- 11 months on—it appears those dark shadows have now been lifted as everyone involved in royal blue looks to move on from a highly publicised controversy.
”there was a cloud as we all know” appleby conceded. “but we’ve got a good strong team within godolphin and everybody pulled together and got on with the job in hand which was to get those horses back on the track as quickly as we could and in the best form possible. i felt that the results proved that that’s what the team were doing.
”we finished the (european) season off in great form with farrh winning the champion stakes at ascot and a personal high for me was obviously outstrip in the breeders’ cup juvenile turf.
”numerically godolphin posted their best season to date so—by the end of it—i felt we’d certainly travelled a long way up the road from where we were at the start.
”going into next season we’ll start from zero points again and we’re looking forward to it. we’ll go back to europe with it all behind us. my vision is to go forward and that’s what i’ve been asked to do not to dwell on the past. that’s the past and that’s been put to bed from our point of view.
”what’s happened has happened it’s behind us and—from my point of view—i’ve been given one challenge and that’s to produce winners.
”i feel my doing that to the best of my ability and the team’s ability. that’s where i am now and i’m looking forward to the challenges ahead.” there would be no better way to kick off that campaign either than with a dubai world cup victory on saturday night with african story cat o mountain prince bishop and vancouverite all gunning for glory this weekend. “each horse will be ridden to its best ability” appleby added. “the main object of the exercise for us is for godolphin to potentially have the winner so we’ll let the horses be ridden as to what suits them. they’ll be ridden to their own individualities. the main object of the exercise is that one of us can get our head in front for godolphin. if saeed wins i’ll be the first person to congratulate him and vice versa. that’s what it’s all about.”