Switzerland earns Grade 1 glory in Dubai Golden Shaheen

Switzerland stormed to the lead at the top of the Meydan Racecourse on his way to victory in Saturday’s $2 million Dubai Golden Shaheen (G1), giving the Eaton Sales grad his first Grade 1 win.

Eaton Sales consigned and sold 8-year-old Switzerland at the 2015 Keeneland September Yearling sale, where he brought a winning bid of $175,000 from the McKathan Brothers.

Switzerland, who is owned by RRR Racing, won the Maryland Sprint S. (G3) and De Francis Dash (G3) before moving to Dubai approximately three years ago. He won the 2021 Dubawi S. (G3) and the listed Al Garhoud Sprint on New Year’s Day prior to his career-defining win on Saturday.

Breaking from the middle of the gate in the 13-horse field, Switzerland moved over towards the inside while sitting in mid-pack down the backstretch. Jockey Tadgh began to urge his mount on around the bend and was just three lengths from the front coming into the stretch. Switzerland found his best stride and surged to the lead, going on to win by 1 ¾-lengths in 1:11.13 for the six furlongs.

“It’s such a fantastic result. We’ve always really liked the horse,” said trainer Bhupat Seemar. “Tadgh and I spoke this morning and made a plan. I knew there would be plenty of pace in the race, so we wanted to pick up the pieces. Turning for home, Tadgh said, ‘We’d just go with one kick.’”

The victory made Switzerland racing’s newest millionaire, with $1,869,052 in earnings. The dark bay was bred by the Branch Family Trust in Kentucky.