Charlie Appleby hopes King’s Stand Stakes hero Blue Point can right the record by making amends in next year’s Al Quoz Sprint at Meydan.
The four-year-old was withdrawn from the Group One prize back in March – won in his absence by then stablemate Jungle Cat – because blood was found in his nostrils before he was loaded into the stalls.
After finishing third in the Nunthorpe on his final start in Britain this year, the son of Shamardal will spearhead the team set to represent the Newmarket trainer in Dubai.
Appleby said: “He has been out there and done it before, but unfortunately it didn’t happen for him in this year’s Al Quoz because the horse had the problem at the starting stalls.
“It was disappointing at the time. But that is racing, and two minutes later we were applauding Jungle Cat back into the winner’s enclosure.
“He did well after that incident, winning at Royal Ascot, and we know that five and six-furlong races are his gig. He will be aimed at sprint races out there, and we will work back from the Al Quoz again.”
King Edward VII Stakes and Great Voltigeur winner Old Persian will be among those joining Blue Point as well as dual French Group Two scorer Brundtland and Loxley, who triumphed at the same level when claiming the Grand Prix de Deauville in August.
Appleby added: “Loxley will be going out there to have a look at the Jebel Hatta, then possibly a tilt at something like the Dubai Turf, while Old Persian is a potential candidate for the City Of Gold.
“Brundtland is out there as well, and we will work back from the Dubai Gold Cup with him. We’ve still got to finalise all the handicappers, but it will be a nice team going there that should be competitive.”
Godolphin trainer Charlie Appleby has been handed a major boost ahead of the 2019 season after confirming triple Group One winner Wild Illusion will stay in training.
Landing the Marcel Boussac on her final start at two, the daughter of Dubawi finished fourth in the 1000 Guineas on her return ahead of filling the runner-up spot in both the Oaks at Epsom and Ribblesdale Stakes at Royal Ascot.
The decision to drop Wild Illusion back to a mile and a quarter proved a turning point following top-level victories the Nassau Stakes and Prix de l’Opera, before she signed off the year with second in the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf at Churchill Downs earlier this month.
Appleby said: “Wild Illusion is staying in training next season and for sure it is nice to have these good older horses.
“She lost nothing in defeat in the Breeders’ Cup and ever since her third run she has only raced at Group One level, except when running in the Ribblesdale (Group Two) at Royal Ascot.”
“We will see how she is in the spring and what progress she is making, and then look at what races we will take in.
“She is good at a mile and a quarter and I don’t see any reason why we should take her out of that sphere, as she has proven herself at the highest level over that trip.
“I don’t see anything much to gain by stretching her out for that extra two furlongs.”
Tally capped off a remarkable season for Godolphin with a superb win in 1800m Eclipse Stakes at Sandown on Saturday.
The talented son of Street Cry turned around a lapse in his form to clinch victory in Melbourne with a typically courageous performance.
The win was Tally’s eighth in a career that includes G1 placings in the ATC Derby at Randwick and the Turnbull Stakes at Flemington. He also won the G2 Alister Clark Stakes at Moonee Valley as a three-year-old in the autumn of 2016.
“These horses that have had a number of seasons with us, the team develops a great affinity with them,” said Godolphin racing and bloodstock manager Jason Walsh.
“It’s great to see him win another feature Stakes race.”
Tally also became the 17th individual winner of 19 Stakes races for Godolphin in a spring season that began in September and was highlighted by Cross Counter’s scintillating victory in the G1 Melbourne Cup.
The Cup was one of six G1 races won in Australia by the Dubai-based operation over the same period with the Cummings stable collecting two wins (Hartnell and Best Of Days), Saeed bin Suroor recording two victories (Benbatl and Best Solution) and Charlie Appleby clinching wins with Cross Counter and Jungle Cat.
Jockey Craig Williams said: “It seemed to make the difference for him, along with this lovely big track, he really enjoyed himself.
“He’s got nothing more to prove to us.
“He’s a million-dollar Stakes earner, a fantastic horse and one we’re very proud of.”