x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 16 January 2018

Cavalryman ready for Epsom

He makes his European return under Dettori in the Group One Coronation Cup at Epsom Downs aiming for a third win after the 1999 and 2001 glory.

Cavalryman, centre, was in good form in 2009.
Cavalryman, centre, was in good form in 2009.

Cavalryman makes his European return in the Group One Coronation Cup at Epsom Downs, England today. Frankie Dettori, who partnered Godolphin's Daylami (1999) and Mutafaweq (2001) to victory in the Coronation Cup, takes the ride on Cavalryman. The four-year-old colt showed some fantastic form when trained by Andre Fabre in 2009, winning three times and rounding off the campaign with an excellent third behind Sea The Stars in the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe.

He failed to rediscover his best on his first couple of starts for Saeed bin Suroor in Dubai but the Godolphin trainer hopes a return to turf will see him in a better light today. "Cavalryman was a little disappointing in Dubai but I have been pleased with his preparation," said bin Suroor. "A mile and a half on turf is ideal for him and he will have no problem with the forecast good ground. "It's always hard to win a Group One race but Cavalryman goes to Epsom in good heart and he has the class to run well."

Cavalryman's opponents includes Fame And Glory, the dual Irish Group One victor, Sariska, last year's Oaks heroine, and Youmzain, a two-time European Group One winner. Youmzain, owned by Jaber Abdullah, a Dubai businessman, bids to make it third time lucky after finishing second in the last two runnings. Meanwhile, Alexandros makes his second appearance in the Group Three Diomed Stakes at Epsom today.

The five-year-old son of Kingmambo, the mount of Dettori, lines up against eight rivals including Penitent, the Lincoln Heritage Handicap scorer, Mabait, a progressive handicapper, Group Three runner-up The Cheka, and Bushman, a Listed scorer. "Alexandros has been working well and he looks in good form at the moment," said bin Suroor. "He has been second in the race before and posted some good efforts in Dubai earlier this season. It looks like it is going to be a strong renewal of the race but Alexandros has the class to run a big race."

In the Oaks today, Rumoush is much fancied. Sheikh Hamdan's horse ran a race full of promise to finish seventh in the 1000 Guineas and delighted connections in a racecourse spin at Lingfield, England, last week. "She's got to get the trip, but she has a reasonably relaxed attitude which will help her." Elsewhere, Fabre, who is in charge of Godolphin's France-based operation, added another winner yesterday.

In the Listed Prix Melisande in Fontainebleau, Peacot was slightly awkward leaving stalls and raced a bit keenly initially. The three-year old colt settled in third on inside after first quarter-mile and then switched off the rail with a furlong-and-a-half left. He then ran on to lead inside the final half-furlong, winning by a neck. * With agencies