William Haggas on Mutakayyef: “I think he is a very good horse who is at his peak at the moment.”
PICTURE: Getty Images
By Jon Lees 8:22PM 13 SEP 2016
MUTAKAYYEF, unlucky in running behind Postponed in the Juddmonte International, is set to tangle with another turf star by taking on the mighty mare Tepin this weekend.
The five-year-old will race in Toronto, Canada, for the Can$ 1 million (£575,527.56) Woodbine Mile, the Grade 1 race won a year ago by the David O’Meara-trained Mondialiste, in which Tepin will have her first start since her memorable win in the Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot.
Mutakayyef finished third at York where his efforts to get closer under Paul Hanagan were hindered by being carried right in the closing stages by Postponed. Dane O’Neill, who has ridden the gelding to two of his three wins, will take over on Saturday with Hanagan riding for owner Hamdan Al Maktoum at Newbury.
Trainer William Haggas said: “We were thinking about the Irish Champion Stakes for Mutakayyef but we would have to supplement and that was a strong race to supplement one for.
‘She will take some beating’
“He likes top of the ground and I hope it is going to be fast. We think he likes a turning mile. We would like to get him to Champions Day either for the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes or the Champion Stakes but he needs to run before then and Arc weekend is getting close. He has to run. He is five years old and run three times this year.”
Mutakayyef is set to be joined by Qatar Racing’s Arod and Mr Owen, who was sixth in the race last year, from Europe in a clash with Tepin who has won her last seven starts.
“Tepin is a champion and a very likely winner but he Mutakayyef is in good shape and I am hoping that this will be Tepin’s prep race for the Breeders’ Cup and she might not be absolutely top hole like she was at Ascot,” Haggas added. “She will take some beating even half fit but Mutakayyef ran a very good race at York. I think he is a very good horse who is at his peak at the moment.”
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