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Joel Stakes preview: Charlie Hills holds strong hand

By Harry Allwood@harry_allwood
Fri 23 Sep 2022

Get the inside track from connections ahead of the Al Basti Equiworld, Dubai Joel Stakes at Newmarket on Friday plus find out Harry Allwood's fancy for the Group Two contest.


Mutasaabeq and Pogo give trainer Charlie Hills a strong hand in the Al Basti Equiworld, Dubai Joel Stakes at Newmarket on Friday, while the likely favourite for the £115,000 contest Tempus, has his sights raised after successive Group Three wins at Salisbury and Deauville.

Sir Michael Stoute’s Atalanta Stakes winner Potapova, George Boughey’s remarkably tough filly Oscula, the Roger Varian-trained El Drama and The Wizard Of Eye from Stan Moore’s yard complete the line-up in what is an intriguing contest, live on Racing TV at 3.35pm.


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The view from connections:

Cosmo Charlton, Hambleton Racing's head racing manager, on Tempus: “We’ve had a great time with him. We bought him for 25,000 guineas 12 months ago and he’s just another example of how Archie can improve these older horses.

“He got him back in good form and just when it looked like he might be levelling out, he’s shot up and improved again.

“He produced some good figures to win at Deauville under the penalty, he’s in great form at home and justifies a step up to a Group Two. We go there with a good, favourite’s chance I would have thought.”


Charlie Hills on Mutasaabeq: “He’s worked in the blinkers a couple of times and worked very nicely in them, so we thought we might as well leave them on.

“He’s been running well in these sort of races all year and has been unfortunate not to get his head in front in one of them. His worst races have probably been at Goodwood, so I don’t think he’ll go back there again.

“He’s in good form, looks great in himself and has got some good form on the Rowley Mile.”


Charlie Hills on Pogo: “Pogo likes it here as well and we’ve been able to freshen him up since York. He was second to Benbatl in this race last year and is in good form, so we’ll see how we get on.”


Harry Allwood's verdict:

POGO finished second in this race last year when narrowly beaten by Benbatl and holds strong claims of going one better on Friday. Bar one blip at Newbury, the Charlie Hills-trained six-year-old has been a model of consistency this year and has gone close twice at this level after landing back-to-back Group Three wins at the start of the season. The form of his second in the City Of York Stakes last time out has worked out well, and there’s a chance he could get an easy lead here, while the return to a mile won't be an inconvenience, either.

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