Andre Fabre is looking to add to his solitary victory on Dubai World Cup night at Meydan with four runners on Saturday.
The master French trainer won the 2004 Sheema Classic with Polish Summer, although Loup Sauvage did finish third in the 1998 World Cup behind Silver Charm and Swain.
He will be represented in the World Cup this year by Godolphin’s Talismanic, the Breeders’ Cup Turf winner who narrowly failed to follow up in the Hong Kong Vase behind Highland Reel.
Talismanic faces a switch to dirt but he is at least by a stallion in Medaglia D’Oro, who was second in the 2004 World Cup.
Cloth Of Stars arguably has a better chance in the Sheema Classic, though, having finished second to Enable in last season’s Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe.
Talismanic, trained in France by Fabre, enters the race with a prep run under his belt, beating stable companion Cloth Of Stars on the polytrack at Chantilly on March 6.
Fabre, who is Godolphin’s main trainer in France, has been to Dubai many times, but the striking Talismanic, whose bold face and white stockings attracts attention wherever he runs, might be his best chance yet to win the big race.
“Talismanic has always been a very good horse,” said Fabre. “Remember he was fourth in the Prix du Jockey Club at three and that was the year that the horse was affected by the virus.”
There should be ample pace in this year’s edition of the Dubai World Cup, but it will be Talismanic’s first attempt on the dirt and Fabre said: “I have to be fair, there is still a question mark about the surface.
“I didn’t want to run Talismanic and Cloth of Stars in the same race and Talismanic was in great shape, so I thought I’d line him up in this race.
“My feeling is that to run on dirt you need more strength. It is a surface that favours stamina and resistance more than speed. And Talismanic has the confirmation and the pedigree to act on this surface.
“They have had a good preparation and I’ve been very happy with them since.”
He added: “I don’t know what sort of chance he has, I have no idea. It is a big race with the horses from North America and Japan. It is very exciting, and I respect all the American horses, but there is no Curlin or Arrogate this year.”
Fabre also runs Trais Fluors in the Dubai Turf and Rosa Imperial in the Godolphin Mile.
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