Naval Power leads home Jumeirah Classic clean sweep
Naval Power bounced back from a lacklustre end to his juvenile campaign as he showed an impressive turn of foot to beat One Nation and Highbank in the Listed Jumeirah Classic at Meydan, UAE, on Friday, 27 January.
The Teofilo colt won his first four starts, including Listed success at Ascot and Haydock Park, and produced an unsatisfactory scope after finishing sixth in the G1 Darley Dewhurst Stakes.
One Nation established a clear lead over his eight rivals, with Naval Power racing exuberantly from his wide draw before William Buick found cover towards the rear after the first quarter-mile.
Naval Power was switched wide entering the straight, in contrast to the rail-hugging Highbank, and the duo attempted to close on One Nation approaching the final furlong.
Highbank was unable to challenge for the lead but Naval Power quickened powerfully to reel in One Nation in the closing strides before asserting for a length and a quarter verdict.
Third home Highbank finished a further three and a quarter lengths in arrears as the Charlie Appleby-trained runners dominated the finish to the nine-furlong turf feature.
Charlie Appleby said: “We were pleased with the performances of all three horses. We were hopeful that Naval Power could get the job done tonight and hopefully go back to the UK for a trial, probably something like the Craven Stakes. He will definitely come forward for the run tonight.
“It was a very good effort from One Nation on his first start of the year and I think the step up to nine furlongs suited him. We will look at stepping him up again for the mile and a quarter of the Jumeirah Derby. We will probably head to the same race with Highbank, who produced a solid run but struggled slightly on the soft ground towards the end.”
William Buick said: “The conditions are quite testing tonight and you are never quite sure, especially with these three-year-olds, but that was a lovely performance from Naval Power.
“It was a competitive race, and the second and third set a good standard. I was really pleased and think Naval Power will be better on slightly better ground as well.”