Haggas may reroute Winter Derby favourite to Dubai

Mutakayyef made huge strides in 2016

PICTURE: Getty Images Haggas may reroute Winter Derby favourite By David Milnes 4:26PM 2 FEB 2017

MUTAKAYYEF, 3-1 favourite with the sponsors for the Group 3 Betway Winter Derby at Lingfield on February 25, could skip Britain's all-weather showpiece in favour of an outing in Dubai a week later.

The six-year-old was most progressive in 2016, winning the Group 2 Summer Mile at Ascot – a victory for which he would have to carry a 5lb penalty at Lingfield – and twice being placed at Group 1 level.

Trainer William Haggas is shortly to discuss plans with owner Hamdan Al Maktoum for Mutakayyef, whose main spring target is the Group 1 Dubai Turf on World Cup night at Meydan on March 26, for which he is 11-2 third favourite with Paddy Power.

Haggas said: "Mutakayyef is fine but he'll need a run before the Dubai Turf and whether it's here in the Winter Derby or in Dubai in the Group 1 Jebel Hatta on Super Saturday has yet to be decided."

Three Lincoln possibles

Haggas also has three entries in the Betway Lincoln Handicap at Doncaster on April 1, a race he has won three times.

Haggas added: "We've entered Afjaan, Victory Bond and Zwayyan in the Lincoln. It's a bit early to tell but Victory Bond looks the likeliest at this stage."

Afjaan is 16-1 with the race sponsors, Victory Bond 20-1 and Zwayyan 25-1.

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