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Secret Advisor leads home sea of blue in G3 Nad Al Sheba Trophy


Secret Advisorinfo-icon confirmed his status as the leading stayer at this year’s Dubai World Cup Carnival when leading home a Godolphin 1-2-3-4 in the G3 Nad Al Sheba Trophy at Meydan, UAE, on Thursday, 27 February.

All five Godolphin contenders in the 14-furlong turf feature were prominent throughout, as Gifts Of Gold set steady fractions in front ahead of Secret Advisor, with Dubhe, Dubai Horizon and Dubai Future racing in third, fourth and fifth.

Secret Advisor, successful in the Listed Meydan Cup over the same course and distance on week five of the Carnival, was switched out passing the two-furlong marker by William Buick and the Charlie Appleby-trained six-year-old took up the running soon after.

Dubai Future ran on to go second with a furlong to race and briefly threatened for the lead but could not get on terms with Secret Advisor, who galloped out well to score by a length and a quarter. Dubai Horizon took third ahead of Dubhe, with Gifts Of Gold fading to seventh.

Charlie Appleby said: “Secret Advisor is a class horse. He has travelled round well and William felt that the leader was always going to fold. He quickened when William asked him to and stayed at it when the second horse came to him. Secret Advisor has ticked three boxes tonight – he has travelled, quickened and stayed at it.

“Secret Advisor has been hard to train, so a lot of the credit must go to the team, who have done a great job. He has thrived out here and is getting better with age, but he is off a mark that could see us look at some nice staying handicaps like the Ebor and in Australia.

“I think he is on the fringes of making the G2 Dubai Gold Cup now. Cross Counter runs this weekend in Saudi Arabia and the plan is for him to run there and then return here for the Dubai Gold Cup. We have Ispolini as well, who is due to run on Dubai World Cup night too.

“If Secret Advisor doesn’t get the opportunity to run on Dubai World Cup night, then I am sure we will look down the staying route back in Europe and regroup here next winter.”

William Buick said: “It was a very pleasing performance. We went a good pace and got a breather down the back, but I knew that Gifts Of Gold was going to eventually fall away and we would be left in front early enough.

“Secret Advisor travels really well, has a good turn of foot and stays very well. It’s nice to get him back and the team have done a great job with him. A lot of care has gone into the horse and it’s very rewarding when it pays off.”