Dubai: Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and Minister of Finance, added another significant Group race victory to his kitty for the season whe Hukum ran out a compelling winner of the Geoffrey Freer Stakes at Newbury on Saturday.
Ridden by former British champion Jim Crowley, the King George V Handicap winner at Royal Ascot last month, scored by four-and-a-half lengths from Max Vega, the mount of Harry Bentley.
The winner is now as short at 10/1 for the St Leger at Doncaster on September 12.
Trainer Owen Burrows, who believes there is more improvement to come from the three-year-old son of Sea The Stars and told Racing UK: “Jim said he didn’t think they went very quick and did mention he thought Hukum might be a bit better going a bit quicker.
“He was impressive. He’d never ran on soft ground, so until they’ve run on it you’re a little worried, but he’s handled it fine.
“He’s strengthening as the year goes on and is very exciting. The St Leger will be spoken about, but this horse has got a bit of speed and I don’t think we’re talking about a Cup horse [long term].”
There was more success for Dubai owned horses at Newbury when Dream of Dreams scored a seven-and-a-half-length victory in the Group 2 Hungerford Stakes in the colours of Derby winning owner Saeed Suhail, who won the English blue riband event in 2003 with Kris Kin.
Meanwhile, Savatiano upstaged some of the best gallopers in Australia to provide the tonic for Team Godolphin’s British operation after stable star Barney Roy Was denied back-to-back Group 1 victory in Germany on a busy Saturday’s racing worldwide.
Trained by James Cummings, Savatiano registered a tenth career success and a significant one at that with a last-stride win in the $200,000 PB Lawrence Stakes over seven furlongs at Caulfield racecourse in Melbourne.
It was also her fifth first-up win as she defeat Sircconi and Kings of Dream in a well-contested renewal of the weight for age contest.
In reprising the success of Godolphin’s Hartnell, who won the race three years ago, Savatiano had Group 1 winners Arcadia Queen (fifth), Streets Of Avalon (seventh), Mystic Journey (eight), Regal Power (ninth), Aristia (10th) and Cape Of Good Hope (11th) well beaten.
The win registered a stakes running double for both Godolphin trainer James Cummings and jockey Mar Zahra who also landed the Regal Roller Stakes with Viridine.
“James and the team did a fantastic job to get them here in great order as usual,” said Godolphin representative Sean Keogh told the stable’s website.
“She came into this preparation similar to the way she began the autumn when she won a G2 race against fillies and mares in Sydney.
“The same recipe worked again today in a much tougher race.”
Meanwhile in Cologne, Germany Britain’s top female rider Hollie Doyle was also denied a dream first career Group 1 victory when Dame Malliot finished third behind Donjah in the 58th Preis von Europa.
Godolphin’s supplementary entry Barney Roy was fourth, unable to quicken in the straight on his first attempt at a mile-and-four-furlongs.
Barney Roy was the winner of the Group 1 Grosser Dallmayr-Preis at Munich last month.
Donjah, a daughter of Teofilo was ridden by Clement Lecoeuvre whose only previous Group 1 success came in the same race two years ago aboard the Grewe-trained Khan.
“She’s a very, very good filly,” he said of the winner. “She relaxed as I wanted her to and when she is like that, she has something left for the finish.
“Today she proved she is a good filly when she has a good pace in front. Then she can kill everybody.”
At Deuville in France Godolphin’s Victory Ludorum finished third behing the John Gosden-trained Mishriff in the Group 2 Haras du Logis Saint-Germain.