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Newmarket

  • 14:05 Dubai Challenge Stakes 7f

  • (Group 2) £90,000 added 3yo+ 9 ran
  • Winner £51,039 2nd £19,350 3rd £9,684 4th £4,824
  • Going: Good to Soft, Good in places
  • Surface: Turf
    Weighed In
  • Winning time: 1m 24.24s
  • Off time: 14:05:39

Highland Colori takes a big step up in class for the Dubai Challenge Stakes.

Last Updated: 11/10/13 3:35pm

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Andrew Balding: Hopeful for Highland Colori

Andrew Balding: Hopeful for Highland Colori

Andrew Balding's Ayr Gold Cup winner Highland Colori takes a big step up in class for tomorrow's Dubai Challenge Stakes.

The five-year-old was partnered by Oisin Murphy in Scotland but with the rider unable to use his claim at Group Two level, Highland Colori will be reunited with David Probert, who won four races on the gelding last year.

Highland Colori will not only be stepping up a level from handicap company, he will also be switching back up to seven furlongs.

"It's a big step up in class for him but he likes Newmarket and won the Ayr Gold Cup in such good style," said Balding.

"He always seems to come to himself in the autumn, I think it's because he likes a bit of dig in the ground so the rain has been very helpful.

"He's very versatile with regards the trip, he's as good over six and seven furlongs.

"David has won lots of races on him so it would have been very unfair not to have given him the ride back."

Irish trainer Willie McCreery is hoping for a big run from his filly, Fiesolana.

She has enjoyed a great summer at home and races in Britain for the first time after failing to make her mark in Group One company last time.

McCreery said: "The race didn't work out for us in the Matron. She got there too soon, through no fault of the jockey as she likes to get on with it, but I thought she ran well enough.

"She's versatile in terms of the ground and is a very uncomplicated horse. Hopefully there won't be too many traffic problems as she's usually up with the pace anyway."

Sabrina Harty will also cross the Irish Sea with Ansgar, a good second to Brendan Bracken in a Group Three last time out.

"Ansgar is a big horse who has just kept growing over the years and eats like a monster. We have been delighted with him since his last run, he is in great form, very, very fresh, and the drop back to seven furlongs should suit him," said Harty.

Harty warned, however, he does not want "dead ground" and added: "He is a genuine, gutsy horse with plenty of pace - he has a huge stride and likes to be able to use it."

Godolphin's Lockwood was beaten by a good one last time in Viztoria, but Saeed bin Suroor's charge would prefer more give in the ground.

Racing manager Simon Crisford said: "Lockwood is progressing along the right lines and has had a good campaign - he stepped up to a different level with his second place in the Park Stakes last time, it was a very good run.

"The softer the better for him."

Peter Schiergen comes over from Germany again with Amarillo, a winner at Haydock already this season and a close second to Moonlight Cloud in July before meeting with defeat at home the last twice.

Schiergen said: "Amarillo has suffered from bad luck in each of his last two races and prior to that chased home Moonlight Cloud in Paris.

"Last time at Munich there was no pace and he was trapped on the inside before having to switch to get a run."

Richard Hannon runs both Trumpet Major and Libranno.

Libranno is back from a jaunt overseas while Trumpet Major has been off since having a breathing operation.

"Libranno ran well in the big mile race at Turkey last time, but this seven furlongs is his trip, and his last win came in this grade and over this trip in the Park Stakes at Doncaster 13 months ago," Hannon told www.richardhannonracing.co.uk.

"Trumpet Major has had a wind operation since he last ran in the Summer Mile at Ascot in July, but he has looked a different horse since he resumed fast work, and going back to seven furlongs is not a problem as he won the Champagne Stakes over this trip as a two-year-old."

Aidan O'Brien runs the highly-regarded Darwin. He had his bubble burst when behind Ansgar last time out, but wears cheekpieces here.

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