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Days of the globetrotter return

"Scottish is in great nick, he's doing really well," Appleby reported.
J A McGrath

Memories of previous international stars to have carried Godolphin colours are revived this week as Scottish sets out on the first leg of an ambitious campaign that takes in G1 races on two continents.

Horses such as Fantastic Light and Grandera, both trained by Saeed bin Suroor, each raced successfully in seven different countries during their respective careers.

It was a mark of their durability and high class that they took the travel in their stride and consistently produced a high level of performance in a variety of racing environments.

Scottish, who is in Chicago for Saturday's G1 Arlington Million, will attempt to emulate those Godolphin greats as his busy program also includes a visit to Melbourne for rich weight-for-age races over 2,000m (a mile and a quarter) in October and November.

Trainer Charlie Appleby reports Scottish to have progressed since his fifth to Highland Reel in Royal Ascot's G1 Prince of Wales's in June.

"He's in great nick, he's done really well," Appleby reported. "And I hear he travelled well to the States, and has settled in brilliantly since arriving at Arlington.

"Chris Connett has travelled over with him, together with Mikey Ennis, who rides him on the track each day," he added.

Scottish finished a gutsy second to Jameka in the G1 Caulfield Cup, over 2,400m in Melbourne last October, but Appleby is considering G1 races over 2,000m in Australia this time, namely the G1 Caulfield Stakes on October 14, the G1 Cox Plate on October 28, and the G1 Emirates Stakes (formerly G1 Mackinnon) on November 11.

"Nothing is set in stone, we'll leave all the options open as long as possible. But Scottish will lead a strong Godolphin team into Melbourne, all going well, and will be very competitive.

"He has one of the eight invitations issued for the Cox Plate, and we nominated him for the race this week. 

"The Winx factor is a major one, but there are many weeks between now and the Cox Plate, and we will weigh up the situation closer the race," he added.

Winx, a champion daughter of the late Darley stallion Street Cry, will attempt to win a record-equaling third consecutive Cox Plate at Moonee Valley.