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Rab Havlin anticipating further progress from Dubai Warrior

Thu 8 Aug 2019

Robert Havlin expects Dubai Warrior to be seen to greater effect when stepped up in trip after maintaining his unbeaten record on his eagerly-awaited return to action.

Forced to miss the first part of the campaign after suffering a setback in the spring, the John Gosden-trained three-year-old made up for lost time when backing up his debut win over a mile at Chelmsford with a stylish victory over the same trip at Kempton on Wednesday.

With a number of Group One entries next to Dubai Warrior’s name, including the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe and the Qipco Champion Stakes, the 45-year-old jockey is confident the one-time Derby hope should get at least a mile and a quarter.

Robert Havlin believes Dubai Warrior will have no problems getting a mile and a quarter

Havlin said: “He looked very good at Kempton and I would say he would improve a fair bit for that run. He was a bit sweaty beforehand, which is normal, as he is a bit of a free sweater, but he didn’t put foot wrong in the paddock or in the race.

“They didn’t go very fast, but I liked the way he settled into a nice rhythm. I had to go a bit earlier than I wanted, but he kept at it for me. He did everything really professionally.

“I think a step up in trip will see him in a better light, as he feels like a mile-and-a-quarter horse to me and there is no doubt in my mind he will get it. It would be nice if he got a mile and a half, as that really would open his options up.

Though plans remain fluid for Dubai Warrior, Havlin, who is an integral part of the team at Clarehaven, believes he will have no problems racing on turf in the future.

He added: “I’ll leave plans to the boss, but he is a really good moving horse and the grass won’t be a problem as he has worked well on that before.

“It was really pleasing the way he stuck a bit of distance between himself and a field of well-bred horses.

“I think a lot of people were expecting to see something and they got what they wanted.

John Gosden, trainer of Dubai Warrior (Mike Egerton/PA Images)
John Gosden, trainer of Dubai Warrior (Mike Egerton/PA Images)

Despite Dubai Warrior missing a large part of the season, Havlin feels it could turn out to be a blessing in disguise.

He said: “He is a big horse and although a hold up is never ideal, just having that extra time off has allowed him to develop into that frame and develop into the big, strong horse he is.

“His work had been pretty good leading up to it, but it is nice when they go and do it on the track. He has got to be up there with the best I’ve ridden this year.”

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