Appleby Honing Classic Team as Arabian Crown has Racecourse Gallop

Arabian Crown on the Rowley Mile with William Buick | Emma Berry

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NEWMARKET, UK — Charlie Appleby, who takes aim at a fourth victory in the Bet365 Craven S. on Thursday with Native Approach (GB) (Too Darn Hot {GB}), took advantage of the Rowley Mile early on Wednesday morning to give one of his Derby prospects, Arabian Crown (Fr) (Dubawi {Ire}), a racecourse gallop. The winner of the G3 Zetland S. at the course last October, Arabian Crown, ridden by William Buick, worked over seven furlongs alongside his older stable-mate King Of Conquest (GB) (Lope De Vega {Ire}) and James Doyle.

“He was always going to pick up as soon as he met the rising ground. I was pleased with that,” said the trainer, who is aiming to start Arabian Crown in the Classic Trial at Sandown on April 26.

“Those mile-and-a-quarter, mile-and-a-half horses can be sleepers during the winter. We only really work them at home over five furlongs and a horse like this is only just getting warmed up over that distance.”

As for the colt's potential route to Epsom, he added, “It will depend what we see at Sandown. If he goes and wins by three or four lengths we'd probably say that was enough to go straight to the Derby. If he just wins or is placed you might feel you'd have to go again. As an example, Adayar went from there to Lingfield and then on the Derby. There are options.”

Appleby had been intending to gallop G1 Kameko Futurity Trophy winner Ancient Wisdom (Fr) (Dubawi {Ire}) at the track on Wednesday but changed his plans owing to the drying ground, which may also mean the colt misses the Qipco 2,000 Guineas. 

He said, “He's going to want cut in the ground so therefore I don't want to start his season off on quick ground in the Guineas. We might have to wait for the French or the Irish Guineas. He's in great order and I'm not under pressure to get a racecourse gallop into him because he's generous at home anyway. 

“On pedigree I would say he'd get further than a mile. His stamina came into play in the Futurity and I would say he'd get a mile and a quarter, probably a mile and a half as well.”

Looking ahead to the season, Appleby said of his juvenile team, “We've got a sharper bunch this year. We didn't have any two-year-old runners this early last season. We're intending to bring a few more out in the coming weeks and have a few runners at the Guineas meeting.”

He continued, “We're coming into this season with better momentum. We managed to have a winner on Dubai World Cup night which we hadn't had for a couple of years. We've campaigned a bit more on the all-weather than we would have done in previous years as well so there's more momentum in the stable first and foremost, but secondly we are starting the season off with some proven two-year-olds [from last year]. I feel like we have a better division: some sharper two-year-olds and some nice three-year-olds.”

Appleby, who has enjoyed notable success with his runners in America over the last decade, currently has a team of 12 horses stabled at Keeneland, where he won last weekend's Maker's Mark Mile with Master Of The Seas (Ire) (Dubawi {Ire}), who won the Craven S. back in 2021 before being beaten a short-head in the 2,000 Guineas by Poetic Flare (Ire) (Dawn Approach {Ire}).

“'Master' winning last weekend was great,” he said. “He'll carry on campaigning through the summer, and Rebel's Romance winning in Qatar and Derby has been great. They're two six-year-olds and this is going to be potentially their last season in training. 'Rebel' might go to Hong Kong yet, we're not sure, but if he doesn't go there then the target will be the Sword Dancer at Saratoga in the hope of then going back to the Breeders' Cup Turf. It would be nice to have Rebel's Romance and Master Of The Seas, both past winners, at the Breeders' Cup again at the end of the season.”

 

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