The Classics 2023 - Guineas, Derby, Oaks, St Leger

“The thoroughbred exists because its selection has depended, not on experts, technicians or zoologists, but on a piece of wood: the winning post of the Epsom Derby.”  Frederico Tesio

Classics 2023 ante-post portfolio

Derby: Naval Power 27-1 each-way

Classics Bets 2023 

2,000 Guineas: Silver Knott 10-1 e/w 11th

1,000 Guineas: Tahiyra 5-2 2nd

Dream Of Love 8-1 e/w 12th

The Oaks: Soul Sister 3-1 1st

The Derby: Military Order 9-2 14th

St Leger:  Tower Of London 8-1 4th

Betfred St Leger

Gregory, Continuous and Desert Hero head the market and there will be plenty of people cheering on Desert Hero no doubt in the hope of a Royal Classic winner. It would be the first since 1977 when Willie Carson rode Dunfermline to victory in this race, famously getting the better of Lester Piggott and Alleged in a real old school battle through the last two-furlongs, the pair clear of the field.

I had Tower Of London on my mind for the race a while back but didn’t back him. He is certainly bred for the job, being by the great Ballydoyle sire Galileo out of the Aga Khan owned mare Dialafara. It's a tried and tested mating as all nine of Dialafara’s foals have been sired by Galileo; in the world of Thoroughbred breeding for a mare to visit the same stallion that many times is the equivalent to a great romance. Seven of the offspring have been winners with Capri the best of the lot; thus far. Capri won the Irish Derby and the St Leger in back in 2017 and all of the siblings have had stamina; Cypress Creek won a G.3 over two-miles. Tower Of London caught the eye winning at Leopardstown of 1m4f and Down Royal over 1m5f before getting beaten a neck in the G.3 Bahrain Trophy Stakes at Newmarket last time a little unlucky in running and just failing to reel in Castle Way. I am on at the ?-1 this morning. Ryan Moore has stuck with Continuous, winner of the G.2 Great Voltigeur Stakes last time (Castle Way second), but I think he may have got it wrong. Continuous needs to prove he will stay the trip and there has to be doubts on breeding being by a Japanese middle-distance performer (who has produced some with stamina) out of a miler in Fluff who in turn was out of a sprinter! I think they went too fast in the Great Voltigeur Stakes and Continuous basically picked up the pieces as the leaders wilted; he was several lengths off the space out the back turning in before passing them all up the long run-in. It’s good-soft and no rain forecast so the drying conditions aren’t helping Arrest who shortened earlier in the week when the ground was soft and it was confirmed a certain Mr Dettori would ride the colt in his last Classic. He won the G.3 1m5½f Geoffrey Freer Stakes As his warm-up well enough but was getting the 3b from a bunch of older stayers who are all that sort of grade - Kemari, Jack Darcy and alike and I wouldn’t be backing any of them in a Group One. Dettori has opted for Arrest over Gregory and again I think the jockey may have chosen poorly. As mentioned before they went too fast too early in the Great Voltigeur Stakes and I think Gregory will be in the shake-up here if ridden less aggressively and of course they are all off of level weights whereas he had a penalty to shoulder at York. The way he won the G.2 Queen's Vase remains fresh in the memory for me and he is perhaps the one I fear the most. Many people will be cheering on Desert Hero in the colours of the King; and it would be a great story if Charlie could get a Classic winner. The colt has been progressing with every run and you suspect the trip will be within his compass but he does need to improve again on what he has achieved so far. His 1m4f G.3 Gordon Stakes victory at Glorious Goodwood is fair form but I would suggest not enough to win at St Leger. Chesspiece was second to Desert Hero at Goodwood and third to Gregory at Ascot, won a Listed heat out in Germany between, and looks to be running for place money at best. Middle Earth is improving, and stays, but needs to find around 10lb on official ratings to be in the mix and though he might as a lightly raced three-year-old he is more likely to come up short; he’ll find this a very different challenge to the handicap he won at York last time out. Alexandroupolis and Denmark, with respect, appear to be on pacemaking duties for team Ballydoyle.

Betfred Derby

The Derby will be run at an unusually early time on Saturday with a post time of 1.30pm, a bit annoying but it does give us time for a few afternoon beers celebrating a victory, hopefully. Auguste Rodin isn’t as short as he once was for Derby glory but remains the favourite. His run in the 2,000 Guineas was far from a great Derby prep but you can’t write off one from Ballydoyle especially as the team seem confident. They only have two others in the line-up in the shape of Adelaide River, couldn’t live with Arrest in the Chester Vase, and Dee Stakes winner San Antonio (I thought he’d be going for the Prix du Jockey Club at Chantilly on Sunday) I assume on pacemaker duties as they both have a fair bit to find on bare form. If there is one from the trio that might be overpriced it is likely Adelaide River who, you would suspect, will at least appreciate the quicker ground with plenty of form in his family on sounder surfaces. It is hardly a shock that the money has been coming for Arrest with Mr Dettori in the saddle for his last Derby ride, rode the winner of the Oaks yesterday, and there is every chance the Chester Vase winner could go off favourite for the race. I remain convinced he is at his best with a little give in the ground, it was soft at Chester and heavy when he was second in the 1m2f G.1 Criterium de Saint-Cloud last back end just losing out to Dubai Mile. Dubai Mile was a respectable fifth in the 2,000 Guineas on his seasonal debut, was going well until outpaced when they turned the taps on, and the son of Roaring Lion would have been an each-way consideration here if we’d had any rain, but the sun is shining. Passenger caught many an eye when an unlucky looking third in the Dante at York and was subsequently supplemented for this; The Foxes won there. Sir Michael Stoute knows what it takes to win this race and he has to be shortlisted but is very inexperienced and his style of running may see him finding trouble again; Richard Kingscote will have to be at his very best in the saddle. Sprewell won the G.3 Derby Trial Stakes at Leopardstown but going this fast is a complete unknown for him, all four runs to date on soft or heavy. That said Sire Churchill won the Guineas on good-firm and his dam Lahaleeb won a G.1 on firm at Woodbine in her racing days so he may go on the surface; if he does he has an each-way shout. Winner of the Dante The Foxes has to prove he gets the trip being a half-brother to Bangkok and Matterhorn he may struggle but he is by Tanaghum and plenty of his other siblings have got 1m4f; he is another with an each-way chance. I tipped Military Order to win the Lingfield Derby Trial which he duly did. If I had a concern on the day it was that he is quite a big horse but he coped with the tight Polytrack track well suggesting the turns and undulations of Epsom shouldn’t be a concern. He was going away from the opposition in the final furlong at Lingfield suggesting to me the 3½f run-in that rises slightly at the finish might suit the son of Frankel very nicely especially if Buick can get him nicely placed turning in to unleash a strong run for the line. The faster going is a bit of an unknown for him but his full-brother Adayar won the G.1 King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Stakes on good-firm and there is form on the going in the family. I think he can emulate his full-brother Adayar and win this. I am on at 9-2 this morning. Trainer Charlie Appleby said “We have been delighted with Military Order’s preparation and everything has gone well to date. I’m happy with stall nine, with Auguste Rodin next to us in 10. William [Buick] knows Military Order very well and can hopefully ride a race that plays to the horse’s strengths. We are very much looking forward to the race.”

It is 123 years since two full brothers, Persimmon (1896) and Diamond Jubilee (1900), were successful in the Derby at Epsom so this afternoon could be truly historic; don't miss it!

Betfred Oaks

The Group One 1m4f Betfred Oaks is due off at 4.30 on Friday afternoon. With the recent decent weather it is set to be run on good to firm ground for the first time in many years as the going at Epsom dried further overnight. The betting would suggest it is almost a one horse race with Savethelastdance at a shade odds-on in places but I am not completely sure she is bomb proof and can’t be having her at the price; I know connections think she might be better for good ground but all her form is on softer going. As I said in the preview earlier this week it can also be argued she didn’t beat much at Chester with the second on an official rating of 91, third rated only 83 and the fourth beaten over ten-lengths in another Listed heat at Goodwood since. She looked very good but looks can be deceiving. Eternal Hope has some hope but it is her first try on Turf and as I said earlier this week it would surely be a first if she was to win a Classic on her Turf debut! Running Lion won the 1m2f Listed Pretty Polly Stakes on soft at Newmarket last time but I have to agree with Oisin Murphy who said at the time that might be her trip and I think she will struggle to see out this trip. For me Soul Sister looked a likely Oaks type winning the G.3 1m2½f Musidora at York and you would expect she will relish the step-up to 1m4f here. Like the jolly her pedigree would suggest this will be her sort of trip and with just three runs under her belt you would expect there is plenty more to come from her as well. Another plus for me is there is plenty of form in her family on faster ground so the drying condition are likely less of a concern for her. I think the Musidora was the toughest of the trials and to win as she did, by four-lengths easing down, I was impressed. If it wasn’t for the fact a certain Mr Dettori is in the saddle she may have been a little bigger in the market but I am on at the 3-1 this morning and expect to see a flying dismount at around 4.40.

30th May 2023

Derby and Oaks Preview

A little unusually for me I don’t have an ante-post bet in either the Derby or the Oaks in the run-up to the race - Naval Power aint going to be making the trip to Epsom on Saturday. My thoughts, as they are at the start of the week, for the big races this weekend follow. The weather forecast looks set fair for the next few days and we will almost certainly have ground on the firm side of good come the weekend, something to consider when you remember a number of the ‘trials’ were run on softer going or of course in the case of Lingfield on the Polytrack.

Aidan O’Brien still has six fillies entered at the time of writing for the Oaks including the short-priced favourite. Savethelastdance has been at the head of the market since her Chester victory. The filly won a Leopardstown maiden on her three-year-old debut and then destroyed the field in the Listed Cheshire Oaks at Chester pulling clear to score by 22-lengths in one of the most impressive performances, visually at least, of the Turf season thus far. That said it can be argued she didn’t beat much at Chester with the second on an official rating of 91, third rated only 83 and the fourth beaten over ten-lengths in another Listed heat at Goodwood since. She looked very good but looks can be deceiving. Soul Sister looked a decent type winning the G3 1m2½f Musidora at York and you would expect she will relish the step-up to 1m4f at Epsom. She went left in the closing stages at York still looking a little green perhaps on what was only her third start and you would expect she learnt a lot from the experience; at least if she hangs left again at Epsom she’ll have the running rail to help her, they won’t be coming up the middle of the straight there. Her lacklustre performance prior to York in the 7f Newbury G.3 Dubai Duty Free Stakes on her seasonal debut can be put down to the soft going and a trip far too short for her I would suggest. Running Lion is one of the more experienced fillies lining-up and has won four of her five starts. Three of those victories have been over a mile on the all-weather before she won the 1m2f Listed Pretty Polly Stakes on soft at Newmarket last time. Interestingly Oision Murphy suggested that 1m2f was her trip after that victory and her sire Roaring Lion never saw out 1m4f, neither did the dam Bella Nouf, so on pedigree you would be doubtful that twelve-furlongs will suit. Eternal Hope is another on the shortlist at the moment having been supplemented for this at a cost of £30,000. She won the Listed Oaks Trial (on the Polytrack) at Lingfield, Be Happy second, nicely making a challenge two out and looking to love every yard of the 1m4f there. This will be her first run on Turf, I am not sure but it would surely be a first if she was to win a Classic on her Turf debut, and that has to be seen as a chink in her armour and her pedigree doesn’t scream middle-distance so even though she stayed at Lingfield there is a niggling doubt about her at the very top level over the trip in my mind.

The Derby will be run at an unusually early time on Saturday with a post time of 1.30pm to fit in around the late F.A. Cup Final this year. Obviously, the Cup Final would normally have been played by now but it is late this year due to the World Cup; to add to the headache the Cup Final has reverted to its more traditional 3.00pm kick-off time due to potential travel problems, getting back to Manchester, and at the request of the Police who didn’t want a load of City and United fans sloshing around in London until 5.30. Anyway, on to the horses. Aidan O’Brien trained the jolly here as well as for the Oaks in the shape of Auguste Rodin. A disappointing twelfth in the 2,000 Guineas I personally wasn’t that surprised he didn’t win at HQ as I thought the mile would be too short now anyway. Connections put it down to the colt never traveling after suffering interference early on in the race. Little Big Bear (was never going to stay the mile in my opinion) proved Guineas disappointment needn’t be a disaster coming out and winning the much more suitable 6f Sandy Lane Stakes last weekend and though the run at HQ for Auguste Rodin was far from a great Derby prep you can’t write off one from Ballydoyle, especially as the team seem confident likely having Adelaide River, couldn’t live with Arrestt in the Chester Vase, and Covent Garden, third in a Listed heat at Navan last time, I assume on pacemaker duties; Dee Stakes winner San Antonio is apparently going for the Prix du Jockey Club at Chantilly on Sunday. Charlie Appleby may not be sending Naval Power to Epsom but he will have Military Order to saddle. A full-brother to 2021 Derby winner Adayar he will be trying to emulate his older sibling having won the Lingfield Derby trial on his last outing (something his brother failed to do finishing second there (I backed Adayar that day and left him alone for the Derby!) “From the team’s point of view, we’re very happy with him. He came out of his Lingfield Derby Trial win very well and we’ve been very pleased with him since,” Charlie Appleby told the Godolphin website “He’s improving week on week physically, and we can’t fault him to date on what he has been doing in his work and on the racecourse. He goes out and gets the job done in the mornings without being flash. He’s a mile-and-a-half horse, so you don’t expect flashy work. That hasn’t changed from his two-year-old days and I wouldn’t expect it to change. Military Order, like his brother Adayar, goes out and gets the job done.” Passenger has been well supported after his slightly unlucky third in the Dante. He does of course represent the winning trainer and jockey combination from last year and connections have stumped up the £85,000 supplementary fee to get him in. Arrest was pretty impressive taking the G.3 1m4½f Chester Vase on his three-year-old debut last month but would appear to be at his best with a little give in the ground. If it had rained he would have been very high on the shortlist but I wonder if the ground will prove too fast for him. The Foxes was second in the G.3 mile Craven Stakes on debut and then won the G.2 1m2½f Dante last month. I have seen people mention that being a half-brother to Bangkok and Matterhorn he may struggle to get the trip but he is by Tanaghum and plenty of his other siblings have got 1m4f; Tactic for example stayed further! Andrew Balding said recently “The Foxes meandered across the course a little bit [at York] but he was the best horse in the race. We're thrilled, it's just what we wanted to see, to win the race and hopefully go on to better things. We always had a doubt whether he would stay a mile and a half but I think on that evidence an extra couple of furlongs won't go amiss. He looks a likely candidate.”

QIPCO 2,000 Guineas

Fourteen are due to line-up for the Group One Qipco 2000 Guineas Stakes at 4.40. Auguste Rodin remains at the head of the market and you can see why but I still have a doubt about him over this trip as a three-year-old and think he might be all about middle-distances; I’d rather take the price about the Derby than for him here. Little Big Bear has to prove he stays this trip but his win in the  6f G.1 Phoenix Stakes at the Curragh in August was arguably the most impressive two-year-old performance of the season; if he stays he’ll go close. It all went wrong for Dirty Dozen member Chaldean in his prep but has gone well here in the past and has always been considered a Guineas horse by connections. Royal Scotsman has to prove he gets eight furlongs but looks to me like a mile will suit. As I have said before being by dual Guineas winner Gleneagles there is plenty of Ballydoyle blood in the pedigree and enough stamina on the dam side to suggest he should get the trip. Charlie Appleby, responsible for last year’s first and second, has two in again this year . Dirty Dozen member Silver Knott Is one I have talked of, and backed a fair bit and I do like the colt. He had Epictetus and Holloway Boy behind in the G.3 Autumn Stakes over C&D last year, course form is no bad thing, and he looks sure to pick up a few big prizes this season. Stable Mate Noble Style is actually the only runner in the 2,000 Guineas field to boast an unbeaten record but there is a doubt as to whether he will see out the mile with a lot of speed on the dam side of his pedigree. Dubai Mile, drawn in six, and Chaldean drawn in thee both like to go forward so it looks likely the early pace will be that side of the field; Dubai Mile won the 1m2f G.1 Criterium de Saint-Cloud and his best hope is surely to make this a proper test. That will, in theory, help the jolly and Auguste Rodin is very much feared but drawn in 12 he is on the other side. I wonder if the two front-runners being drawn low might give Silver Knott the perfect tow into the race. I am on record as saying I think he will want 1m2f this season so a strongly run mile here should suit the concern is how much the forecast rain will get into the ground. I have taken a chance at 10-1 each-way (4-places) on the Godolphin owned colt. Charlie Appleby said: “Silver Knott’s preparation has gone well. He is proven on the track and we feel that he has a nice profile going into the race. He will see the mile out well, but we wouldn’t want too much rain. I genuinely feel that he could run a big race.”

QIPCO 1,000 Guineas

It is the turn of the star three-year-old fillies on Sunday with the 1,000 Guineas at Newmarket due off at 3.40. The two I have been talking about in the build-up will be here in the shape of Tahiyra and Dream Of Love. Tahiyra is a member of the Dirty Dozen for the season and, as I said earlier this week, a filly I am very much looking forward to seeing as she might just be something a little bit special. Trainer Dermot Weld isn’t one for taking chances and the fact she runs at HQ rather than waiting for the Irish 1,000 Guineas can be seen as a tip in itself. With the forecast rain Saturday and the possibility of more on Sunday there is every chance soft will be in the going description by Sunday afternoon and that would appear to be in her favour. I am on at the 5-2. I have tipped Dream Of Love on all three of her starts to date and have to have an interest in her for this. By French Guineas & Derby winner Shamardal out of G.2 1m2f winner Secret Gesture if this is a bit testing and run at a true pace that could help her chances as I think she will get a little further as the season progresses. I am on each-way at 8-1 (4-places).

3rd May 2023 

1,000 Guineas Preview

I must admit I have lost some sleep thinking about the 1,000 Guineas. Tahiyra is a member of the Dirty Dozen for the season and a filly I am very much looking forward to seeing as she might just be something a little bit special. Having won on debut at Galway she confirmed the promise shown there by taking the 7f G.1 Moyglare Stud Stakes at the Curragh in September on soft going in impressive fashion going away in the final half-furlong. Trainer Dermot Weld isn’t one for taking chances and the fact she runs at HQ rather than waiting for the Irish 1,000 Guineas can be seen as a tip in itself. With the forecast looking damp there is every chance soft will be in the going description by Sunday afternoon and that would appear to be in her favour as well. That said, Dream Of Love is one I have tipped on all three of her career starts to date and she may have an each-way chance at a price. I still think she might want a little further than this as the season progresses but she caught the eye flying home at Meydan in January over seven, just failing to catch Mawj that day on unusually soft going out in Dubai. She is a half-sister to three winners being, as I have mentioned more than once, by French Guineas & Derby winner Shamardal out of G.2 1m2f winner Secret Gesture a good mare in her days who was second in the Oaks back in 2013, and there is plenty of stamina in the pedigree. If it comes up soft and this turns into a testing mile I can see her potentially being in the shake-up here. Third in the 7f Listed Montrose Fillies' Stakes last back end she appeared to get a little unbalanced in the dip that day but a winter on her back should have strengthened her up and that track and trip experience has to be seen as a positive. Meditate is the big hope for Ballydoyle and she danced every dance last year, running seven times, never worse than second, and finished her season winning the mile G.1 Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (I tipped her ante-post). Second to Tahiyra in the 7f Moyglare Stud Stakes it is difficult to imagine her reversing the form, especially as I think she would like it quicker than the likely going come Sunday with rain forecast all weekend; if it stayed dry though………………Stable mate Never Ending Story I assume would be on pacemaker duties if she runs, but did win the 7f G.3 Ballylinch Stud "Priory Belle" 1,000 Guineas Trial Stakes at Leopardstwon last month. Mamas Girl is two from two and clearly likes it here at Newmarket. She won over 7f here on her only start at two and then came out for her three-year-old debut last month to win the 7f G.3 Nell Gwyn Stakes, Fairy Cross second. You can certainly argue you don’t get much better prep than that but I am not sure it was the best Nell Gwyn we’ve ever seen and she was perhaps lucky to get away with such a slow start there; she’ll have to be out the stalls better in this you would expect. Remarquee is another that arrives off the back of two wins and two victories, both over seven-furlongs of softish ground. She won the G.3 7f Fred Darling Stakes at Newbury as her trial, Stenton Glider second, despite things hardly going to plan; jockey Rob Hornby lost his whip inside the final furlong and she was a little green still. Her pedigree is full of mile and mile-and-a-quarter form so the slight step-up in trip should hold no fears. She has to be on any shortlist. Lezoo showed some good form at two, had Meditate in second when winning the 6f G.1 Cheveley Park Stakes back in September, but the mile distance is a complete unknown for her.

3rd May 2023: 

2,000 Guineas Preview

Auguste Rodin has been all the rage for the 2,000 Guineas for a while having won the G.1 Futurity Trophy in October. He is by Deep Impact and the first foal out of triple G.1 winner, and firm favorite here at Triple G Towers, Rhododendron. Aidan O'Brien has said "if we have a horse who could do the Triple Crown, he would definitely be the one." but I just wonder if he is going to be all about middle-distances and may find the mile at HQ a little on the short side. If it comes up wet, and it might looking at the forecast, his undoubted stamina will be a big plus, but if it turns into a bit of a sprint he could find one too quick for him over 8-furlongs. I can't be backing him at a short price with the going an unknown, but if it does rain as forecast he has to be taken very seriously though his price will shorten further no doubt. Let's be honest, you would expect his connections will ensure the race is run at a suitable pace and I would assume Cairo will be on pacemaker duties, if he runs, to ensure his stable mates proven stamina comes into play; that of course could make Cairo an each-way punt as it wouldn’t be the first time the Ballydoyle ‘also ran’ collected a big lump of prize-money. Little Big Bear is the other of the trio due to line-up for ‘the lads’ and he is actually officially top-rated, his seven-length demolition of the field in the 6f G.1 Phoenix Stakes at the Curragh in August arguably the most impressive two-year-old performance of the season. Being by No Nay Never the obvious question would be will he stay but his dam Adventure Seeker got middle-distances and his various siblings all got the trip at least though none have been rated over 100. Two of my Dirty Dozen are due to line-up in the shape of Chaldean and Silver Knott. The Juddmonte owned Chaldean had a mare in his prep unshipping Franke Dettori out of the stalls. He took the G.1 Dewhurst at this track in October which is a positive and as one that likes to race prominently has to be considered on a track he has gone well on in the past. Godolphoin owned Silver Knott is a bit of a conundrum as I remain convinced 1m2f is his likely best trip this season. He didn’t appear to enjoy soft going in the G.2 Champagne Stakes when behind Chaldean and the forecast rain has to be a concern for him but if the rain doesn’t come he must have a chance. He was certainly progressing nicely last year and ended his campaign winning the G.3 Autumn Stakes over the mile here at HQ in October before finishing second in the G.1 Breeders Cup Juvenile Turf, also over a mile, beaten the width of a fag paper before being put away for the winter. The least exposed of the main hopes is Sakheer. He won the 6f G.2 Dubai Duty Free Mill Reef Stakes at Newbury back in September like a good horse but he is another that has questions to answer at the trip. His pedigree suggests he may struggle to see out the eight-furlongs though there is some stamina on the dam side if you go back a generation or two. Another concern is the yard of Roger Varian is far from flying at the moment; at the time of writing on Wednesday one winner from twenty-four runs. Royal Scotsman has just the two wins over six-furlongs at Goodwood to show from his six starts last season but was only a head behind Chaldean in the Dewhurst Stakes when last seen and looked as though a mile may suit more than once. Being by dual Guineas winner Gleneagles there is plenty of Ballydoyle blood in the pedigree and enough stamina on the dam side to suggest he should get the trip. Noble Style arrives three from three including the 6f G.2 Dubai Gimcrack Stakes which he won when last seen in August. William Buick has gone for Silver Knott which has to be seen as a negative and despite being by top miler Kingman there is plenty of speed on the dam side of his pedigree suggesting he may find this tough if it turns into a slog. I am a fan of the horse but he might be better at six and seven furlongs rather than the mile. Indestructable was a bit of a surprise winner of the G.3 Craven Stakes over track and trip last month but won well enough it has to be said and his trainer has always rated the colt. if there is one over-priced he might be it. 

26th January 2023 

Before Naval Power makes his seasonal debut in the 1m1f Nad Al Sheba Turf at Meydan on Friday evening I have backed him at 27-1 (random price) each-way with Hills for the Derby. I talked of him every run of his two-year-old campaign, was odds-on and unbackable more than one, and the colt is a three-year-old I will be keeping a close eye on this year. For me it is not out of the question that he becomes a Derby hope for Godolphin. It’s not unknown for the offspring of Teofilo to get middle distances and on the dam side, there is some stamina in the family, Dubawi is his grandsire being the sire of Emirates Rewards which has to be seen as a plus as well. He was fancied by many for the G.1 Dewhurst Stakes last October, myself included and I backed him, but having gone unbeaten on his four starts to that point he finished sixth; was reported to have bled during the race and he produced an unsatisfactory scope afterwards. Charlie Appleby told the Dubai Racing Club website “I have been pleased with his preparation but there will be improvement to come for the run. We are looking at potentially giving him one start in Dubai before looking at some of the Classic trials in the UK.”