Estidhkaar ready for Salisbury
Views from connection ahead of the EBF Stallions Bathwick Tyres Conditions Stakes at Salisbury on Monday.
Estidhkaar returns at Salibury
Estidhkaar makes his eagerly-awaited comeback after 14 months off the track when he lines up for the EBF Stallions Bathwick Tyres Conditions Stakes at Salisbury on Monday.
The four-year-old, trained by Richard Hannon, takes a considerable step down in class after having been campaigned at Group level for the last six of his eight career starts.
Estidhkaar was a highly-talented two-year-old, winning a pair of Group Two races – the Superlative Stakes at Newmarket and Doncaster's Champagne Stakes.
Connections want to see if the Dark Angel colt still retains plenty of his ability after being sidelined with a series of minor issues since he was well beaten in the Prix Jacques le Marois at Deauville in August 2015.
"It's nice to get him back on the track. It's been a long time," said Angus Gold, racing manager to owner Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum.
"He's had a succession of niggly little problems that have held him up. The important thing is to get back on the track and see if he can still do it.
"Richard and his team have been happy with him recently.
"We had him flying in the spring for the Lockinge but then he got a hold-up that kept him off.
"He's now back in good form and we're hoping for a bit of decent ground for him, so we'll see how we get on."
Despite his smart juvenile form, Estidhkaar is only just the top-rated horse in the field on a mark of 110, being 1lb higher than Andrew Balding's Absolutely So.
John Gosden's Crazy Horse, absent since the French 2000 Guineas in May, is also in contention.
The other horse in the line-up with a rating of over 100 is Kool Kompany, who won the Craven Stakes at Newmarket in April 2015 for the Hannon stable and is now back with them after a spell in Australia, where he was trained by Chris Waller.