herald

Friday 18 August 2017

Hannon's Estidhkaar could face an army of O'Brien raiders

Estidhkaar could face an army of Aidan O'Brien raiders in the Dubai Dewhurst Stakes at Newmarket on October 17.

Since filling the runner-up spot on his Goodwood debut in May, Richard Hannon's inmate has racked up a hat-trick of victories, most recently running out an impressive winner of Doncaster's Champagne Stakes.

He is set to test the water at Group One level for the first time on Dubai Future Champions Day and looks sure to be given a thorough examination, with O'Brien responsible for 13 of the 34 horses in contention.

Gleneagles and Ol' Man River, fresh from victory in the Junddmonte Beresford Stakes, star among the formidable Ballydoyle team.

The likes of Aktabantay, Belardo, The Wow Signal and the French-trained Full Mast are also still in the mix.

Hannon also has Ivawood and Kool Kompany in the Dewhurst, but that pair look likely to line up in the Vision.ae Middle Park Stakes on what will be a crucial afternoon as the fledgling trainer looks to be crowned champion in his first year.

"Estidhkaar is on target for the Dewhurst, he is fine at the moment and we are very pleased with him," said Hannon.

"Ivawood is an intended runner in the Middle Park Stakes.

plan

"The plan is also to run Beacon in the Middle Park along with Kool Kompany."

Estidhkaar joins Beacon, Ivawood and Kool Kompany among 22 Middle Park entries. General Marshall, Smuggler's Cove, The Great War, The Warrior and War Envoy are O'Brien's five possible runners in that race, while the Ger Lyons-trained Cappella Sansevero is another leading contender for Ireland.

The Jim Bolger-trained Lucida, last Friday's Rockfel Stakes heroine, stands out among 12 potential runners for the Dubai Fillies' Mile, in which the Hannon-trained duo of Shagah and Osaila are possible runners.

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