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Makin Seeks Starcraft-Dubawi Match Race
Sheikh Mohammed "has refused to be side-tracked from Dubawi's tilt at the US Gr1 Breeders' Cup, despite repeated efforts from Starcraft's owner Paul Makin to arrange a match race," reported racingpost.co.uk. Makin (who owns Australia's multiple Gr1-winning 5YO entire Starcraft) "wants an immediate resumption of rivalries" following Starcraft's defeat of Godolphin's boom 3YO colt Dubawi in last weekend's Gr1 Queen Elizabeth II Stakes (8 furlongs) at Newmarket in England. After the race, Starcraft's triumphant performance "was almost overshadowed" by wide-spread criticism of "a tactical 'cock-up' by jockey Frankie Dettori on the runner-up". Makin has grabbed UK headlines with the declaration: "Let's do it again over the Rowley Mile. Tomorrow, next Thursday, Friday or whenever, I'm ready. I thought he'd (Sheikh Mohammed) be up for a sporting wager. What's he afraid of, that his cat's not good enough? All he has to do is give me a call, I'm waiting." Makin was scheduled to fly home to Australia from Britain overnight, but added: "I'll stay on if he's interested. A match race would create far more interest than the Breeders' Cup & it would be great for racing here. All these good horses over here are pussycats; they have only got to sneeze & they're off to stud." However Makin's "bravado cut no ice at Godolphin", whose racing manager Simon Crisford replied: "We're running in the Breeders' Cup Mile & hopefully Starcraft will be there too. It's our priority; a championship event is far more important than any match race. Even if we could have a match race, the timing is all wrong. The Breeders' Cup is in 4 weeks & the schedule just wouldn't allow it."