Soft ground should not unduly knock Estidhkaar off his stride when he takes aim at the Dubai Dewhurst Stakes at Newmarket.
This does not appear to be the strongest renewal of the coveted Group One on Future Champions Day, so a perfectly feasible argument can be made to suggest the young colt could be a cut above.
The Richard Hannon-trained juvenile has made breathless progress since his maiden was broken at Newbury in June, with a four-and-a-half-length rout of Aktabantay in the Superlative Stakes a clear sighter of his worth.
That run is especially significant as the runner-up has since shown up very well at the top table, while the ground was also pretty demanding at Newmarket that day - a factor which emboldens his chances for this.
Estidhkaar was then sent to Doncaster for the Champagne Stakes where he landed record a length-and-a-quarter defeat of War Envoy, who was only a length away in a Group One at Longchamp.
Despite his tender years, the Hamdan Al Maktoum-owned colt already looks a bit of a street-fighter, so should be man enough to handle the exacting conditions at Newmarket.
Allied to his guts, his class should see him home under Paul Hanagan.
Stablemate Ivawood has looked one of the best young guns on the block this year and really ought to be winning the vision.ae Middle Park Stakes.
Hannon has opted to stay over six furlongs with the Zebedee colt, who has the pedigree to stay further but has already shown a most destructive shift of gear.
Unbeaten in three starts, one of which was a near-three-length thrashing of Jungle Cat in the July Stakes, Ivawood’s best performance to date was at Glorious Goodwood.
Although the strength of the Richmond Stakes was questionable, what was not open for debate was the manner in which he zoomed four and a half lengths clear at the line.
* Selections -
CHELTENHAM: 2.05 Frampton, 2.40 Court Minstrel, 3.15 Junction Fourteen, 3.50 The Romford Pele, 4.25 Commissioned, 5.00 Five Star Wilsham, 5.35 Mountain King.
DOWNPATRICK: 2.15 Crown Theatre, 2.50 Moores Road, 3.25 Mississippilanding, 3.55 Kashline, 4.30 Formal Bid, 5.05 Baily Dusk, 5.40 Ange D’Or Javilex.
DUNDALK: 6.10 Sacrificial, 6.40 Moving On Up, 7.10 Teeline, 7.40 Crafted Mastery, 8.10 Shukhov, 8.40 Parish Hall, 9.10 Notnowsam.
HAYDOCK: 2.00 Mister Rockandroll, 2.35 Juncart, 3.10 Portamento, 3.40 Jamaican Bolt, 4.15 My Dream Boat, 4.50 Stopped Out, 5.25 Marcret.
NEWMARKET: 1.50 Majestic Manner, 2.25 Squats, 2.55 Ivawood, 3.25 Agnes Stewart, 4.00 ESTIDHKAAR (NAP), 4.35 Thawaany, 5.10 Grandeur.
REDCAR: 1.55 Puissant, 2.30 Summer Stroll, 3.00 George Bailey, 3.30 Choisan, 4.05 Kerbaaj, 4.40 Broctune Papa Gio, 5.15 Another Royal, 5.45 Hydrant.
WOLVERHAMPTON: 5.50 Red Cape, 6.20 Bondi Beach Babe, 6.50 Clergyman, 7.20 Field Game, 7.50 Dream And Hope, 8.20 Siren’s Cove, 8.50 Little, 9.20 Random.
DOUBLE: Estidhkaar and Ivawood.