Sloane Avenue back in time for another crack at Godolphin Mile
The Jeremy Noseda-trained Sloane Avenue just missed in the 2015 Godolphin Mile (G2) after breaking from post 15.
Unfortunately, the well-bred son of Candy Ride has had more bad luck, being sidelined by injury. Sloane Avenue just made it back in time to get in a prep run at Kempton, where he finished second, but Noseda admits that the preparation has been rushed.
“It was a tight time frame to get him to his first race and he needed it badly,” the trainer said. “He has moved on since -- Frankie (Dettori) certainly thinks so. He looks in great nick and I think he is in great form but he’s done his build-up in 60 percent of the time you would normally, due to his injury.”
Other than that, Sloane Avenue is in good heart.
“We were delighted with what he did this morning, he just cantered once around the track,” Noseda said. “He’s done everything and just needs to keep ticking over until Saturday. He seems to have taken the travelling and everything well. Frankie has ridden him in work recently and we are happy with him.”
As usual, there were a few interesting tidbits in the Wednesday notes.
Likely Golden Shaheen (G1) favorite X Y Jet was on his best behavior during a gate schooling session.
"It all went perfect," trainer Jorge Navarro said. “Like I've been saying since we've been here, he's ready.
“When we come back from Dubai, he'll go straight to the farm. The Breeders' Cup Sprint (G1) is the late season goal. He should love it at Santa Anita."
Duramente, one of the top choices in the Sheema Classic (G1), is adapting to his first trip outside of Japan.
“I asked the rider to drive him a bit strongly at the end and wanted to see his response,” trainer Noriyuki Hori said of his Wednesday exercise. “I think he responded well. His condition is improving as he had a preparation race last month and he will be at his best for the race.
“Duramente showed more maturity and worked more relaxed. It is his first trip overseas, and with the different temperature and surroundings, he showed some increased nervousness. However he has settled into the new surroundings faster than we expected.”
Sheema rival Gailo Chop, on the other hand, isn’t loving the weather.
“He doesn’t much care for the humidity,” rider Steve Haes said of the French invader. “So this morning, when I took him out, I knew he was going to be a bit more on edge. However, he had a nice action and cantered just like always, but as I said, he wasn’t that keen in this hot weather.”
Trainer Richard Fahey offered a positive update on Dubai Gold Cup (G2) contender Suegioo, who reportedly didn’t ship well but looks good now.
“I was told he didn’t travel over as well as he might have done, but seeing him for the first time, I’m a lot happier than I thought I would be,” Fahey said.
Trainer Eddie Lynam observed that defending Al Quoz Sprint (G1) champion Sole Power is a happy warrior.
“He knows what he is doing at this stage and is happy in himself,” Lynam said. “In fact, I have not known a happier horse in the 30 years I have been training.”
Speaking of old sprint warriors, Buffering’s trainer Robert Heathcote understands why his charge is a fan favorite in Australia.
“What endears him to the Australian public so much was that it took him 18 goes to win a Group 1, and then he’s won six of his last 12,” Heathcote told Howard Wright in a Dubai Racing Club feature. “During those first 18 attempts, the quality of horses he raced against was so strong.
“He ran against Black Caviar; when she left the scene we had another top-notcher in Hay List, and they were clearly the best sprinters in the world. Then along came Sepoy, and right through to today, with the likes of Lankan Rupee and Chautauqua around, Buffering has still been there.
“It’s an extraordinary story that he’s done all this at the latter stages of his career. If I knew what the secret was, I’d do it to a few other horses.”
Sloane Avenue photo courtesy Dubai Racing Club/Neville Hopwood.