Ed Bethell’s Fearby looks to make a successful step up to Group Two level in the six-furlong Al Basti Equiworld Dubai Gimcrack Stakes at York on Friday.
The two-year-old took a maiden race at Wetherby and then progressed to win the Listed Dragon Stakes at Sandown by five lengths in early July.
A first Pattern-race contest followed at Goodwood, where the son of Havana Gold was second behind Richard Hannon’s Armor in the Group Three five-furlong Molecomb Stakes.
“He goes there in really good form,” said North Yorkshire-based Bethell.
“I think the step up to six will hopefully be in his favour and we’re going there hopeful.”
Although rain is expected to fall at some stage during the Ebor meeting, Fearby has form on varying types of ground and will take his chance regardless.
“He’s won on good to firm and he’s won on good to soft so we’ll run whatever happens,” said Bethell.
“He’s not ground dependent, he’ll run whatever the ground and I think a fast ground six (furlongs) will be better than a soft-ground six.”
The Hannon-trained Lusail heads the market after taking the Group Two July takes at Newmarket by a head from subsequent Richmond Stakes winner Asymmetric.
“The form of his win in the July Stakes couldn’t have worked out any better with the second, Asymmetric, winning the Richmond,” Hannon said on his Unibet blog.
“That obviously gives us plenty of confidence and we decided to pull him out of Goodwood because of the ground.
“The good thing about Lusail is that he’s incredibly easy to train, he isn’t flashy in his work, but neither is Snow Lantern, yet he seems to come alive on the race track and he already has experience at York having won on debut.
“This is no ‘gimme’ but there’s no doubt he has the best form coming into it and we’ll obviously be disappointed if he doesn’t go close to winning.”
Roger Fell runs Cotai Glory colt Eldrickjones, who was last seen finishing fifth in Goodwood’s Vintage Stakes after getting loose beforehand and then being badly hampered with a furlong left to travel.
“We worked him the other day and he worked really well,” Fell said.
“He’s in really good form and we’re really pleased with him at home.
“He’s well after Goodwood and he’ll have two people leading him up this time.”
Richard Fahey’s Vintage Clarets will return to a six-furlong trip after taking on the five-furlong Weatherbys Super Sprint Stakes last time out and coming home sixth of a field of 22.
Prior to that the colt was third in the Coventry Stakes at Royal Ascot, where he was beaten a length and a half by Andrew Balding’s Berkshire Shadow.
“He was third in the Coventry behind Oisin’s horse (Berkshire Shadow) and I just think six furlongs at York will really suit him,” said Fahey
“He’s a quick horse and he didn’t have much luck in the Weatherbys Super Sprint, I think he’s a good price.”
Berkshire Shadow will cross paths with Vintage Clarets, while Charlie Hills is represented by Rose Bowl Stakes third Orazio and Kevin Ryan has both Gis A Sub and Spitting Feathers.
Karl Burke’s Last Crusader, Michael O’Callaghan’s Twilight Jet and the Ed Walker-trained American Star round up the field of 11.