All Eyes On Too Darn Hot


Too Darn Hot returns in the Dante | Racing Post

York’s Knavesmire was bathed in May sunshine on Wednesday and with summer comes the G2 Al Basti Equiworld Dubai Dante S. which this year enjoys the honour of hosting the 3-year-old bow of Too Darn Hot (GB) (Dubawi {Ire}). In the normal run of things, the Lloyd-Webbers’ beau ideal would not be here with the G3 Greenham S. and G1 2000 Guineas always the plan, but fortune played the owner-breeders another sleight of hand and the ‘TDN Rising Star’ travels North for the first of several moments of truth in 2019. The homebred handled fast conditions admirably when capping an unbeaten juvenile campaign in the G1 Dewhurst S. at Newmarket in October and it is unlikely the ground will ride as quick here as he points to the June 1 G1 Epsom Derby.

John Gosden said he is happy he has Too Darn Hot where he wants him given his recent setback. “A few days before the Greenham, he came up with a splint issue and he had two weeks of walking,” he explained. “So, the Dante became the obvious place to go–and although we are happy with the horse, it has been a very tight schedule to get him to this race. He worked very nicely on Friday with Frankie and did two nice canters on Saturday morning. He’s a little fresh in himself and I’ve no doubt in my mind he will improve for it. Certainly, another 10 days to prepare him would have been suitable, but we have no more time to play with now.”

A tilt at the blue riband is the dream for connections, but the trainer is far from convinced he is made for that examination. “Obviously we see the Dante as the best trial and it looks a very good field–and from the race, we will know whether to point towards the Derby or the St James’s Palace,” he added. “My instinct says a mile to a mile and a quarter from what I’ve seen of the horse, but then his full-sister was second in the Leger. We will let the horse and Frankie tell us.”

Another colt making his return is Godolphin’s GI Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf winner Line of Duty (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}) who also captured the nine-furlong G3 Prix de Conde at Chantilly in October. “Line of Duty’s preparation has gone well and we are looking forward to stepping him up in trip,” Charlie Appleby said. “We had the option of starting him off in the 2000 Guineas, but didn’t want to run him over a straight mile, especially as his pedigree suggests that he would be suited by further. He is a horse who is happier running at something rather than hitting the front too soon and we are hoping that racing over middle distances will play to his strengths. It looks a very good renewal of the Dante S., but we are confident that Line of Duty can run a big race.”

Success for the G2 Beresford S. winner Japan (GB) (Galileo {Ire}) would see him vault over his stablemates in the Derby reckoning, while the potentially classy novice winners Almania (Ire) (Australia {GB}), Surfman (GB) (Kingman {GB}) and Telecaster (GB) (New Approach {Ire}) add spice to a renewal that sees ‘TDN Rising Star’ Turgenev (GB) (Dubawi {Ire}) a 50-1 shot. Roger Varian said of the 14-length Apr. 30 Newcastle novice winner Surfman, “We’ve always held him in the highest regard and we’re keeping our fingers crossed that he’s as good as we think he might be. He’s a highly promising colt–we’ve got high hopes for him going forward.”

Hughie Morrison said of the nine-length Apr. 15 Windsor scorer Telecaster, “We might be being a bit brave, but you’ve got to have a go some time and this race fell at the right time. He’s the sort of horse that always goes well at home and finds it very easy.”

Gosden also unleashes Too Darn Hot’s full-sister Lah Ti Dar (GB) in the G2 Al Basti Equiworld Middleton S. over what is possibly an extended 10-furlong trip short of her optimum. After a 10-length success in the 12-furlong Listed Galtres S. here in August, the fellow ‘TDN Rising Star’ ran second in the G1 St Leger at Doncaster in September and third in the G1 Qipco British Champions Fillies & Mares S. at Ascot the following month.

“We’ve been pleased with Lah Ti Dar. This has been planned for some time,” her trainer said. “So, you might say this has been Plan A–with her brother, it has not been Plan A. She’s happy in herself. It is a good starting point for any filly and we’re looking forward to running her. The Middleton is a lovely race, placed well in the calendar.”

Interestingly, Sir Michael Stoute has two engaged in Juddmonte’s ‘TDN Rising Star’ Sun Maiden (GB) (Frankel {GB}) and Abdullah Saeed Al Naboodah’s Rawdaa (GB) (Teofilo {Ire}), with Ryan Moore on the latter who was last seen finishing third in the Listed Snowdrop Fillies’ S. on Kempton’s Polytrack on Apr. 20. The Listed British Stallion Studs EBF Westow S. sees the return of the G2 Flying Childers S. winner and G1 Prix de l’Abbaye third Soldier’s Call (GB) (Showcasing {GB}), while the Stratford Place Stud Breeds Group Winners Maiden S. is the starting point for Ballydoyle’s Hong Kong (American Pharoah), a $1-million Keeneland January graduate who is a half-brother to Caravaggio (Scat Daddy).

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