Haggas hoping for rain for Dubai Honour

William Haggas is willing to wait for rain for some of his Somerville Lodge string, including Dubai Honour, who is yet to be seen on home soil in 2022.

The Pride Of Dubai gelding followed up a victory in a 10-furlong handicap during Newmarket’s July Festival with a pair of Group Two triumphs in France last season – firstly landing the Prix Guillaume d’Ornano and then scooping the Prix Dollar at ParisLongchamp on Arc weekend.

He then returned to the UK to finish second to Sealiway in the Champion Stakes at Ascot, before overseas ventures came calling once again and he finished his three-year-old season by staying on for fourth in the Hong Kong Cup, beaten just a length and a half.

However, despite his name cropping up amongst the entries for a whole host of contests so far this season, including the Coral-Eclipse, he hasn’t been sighted since finishing down the field in the Dubai Sheema Classic in the spring and his trainer puts that down to conditions not being ideal for his charge.

“If you follow him, you will see he needs it soft,” explained Haggas. “I ran him on firm ground in Dubai and it took him a while to get over it. He could go to the Sky Bet (York Stakes) with My Prospero and he’s in the King George. He’s got options, but we just need to be patient for the ground to be right.”

The lack of rain is hindering Haggas’ plans during the busy middle-segment of the season, but one of his string who does not mind the fast summer conditions is Sacred, who finished a commendable fifth in the Platinum Jubilee Stakes at Royal Ascot, a performance which was franked to some extent in the July Cup this weekend.

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Newbury Races – Saturday August 14th
Sacred, here ridden by jockey Tom Marquand (left) winning the BetVictor Hungerford Stakes at Newbury, could line up in the Lennox Stakes at Glorious Goodwood (John Walton/PA)

Sacred holds an entry in both the World Pool Lennox Stakes and the Qatar Sussex Stakes for Glorious Goodwood, but if she is to appear on the Sussex Downs it is likely to be over seven furlongs rather than the mile.

Stablemate Aldaary also features in the entries for both races and Haggas said: “One likes it soft, the other prefers firm, so hopefully we’ve got the races well covered. Sacred is likely to go for the Lennox Stakes or Prix Maurice de Gheest at Deauville.”

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