Dubai Duty Free Mill Reef Stakes (Group 2) | 6f | 2yo | ITV4/RUK
Can True Mason give Burke another big win?
Karl Burke is chasing a third victory in the juvenile feature in the past decade with True Mason, who brings Group 1 form to the table after two recent placed efforts in France.
The son of Mayson was the first colt home when finishing third behind classy female pair Pretty Pollyanna and Signora Cabello in the Prix Morny at Deauville last month, in which the reopposing Marie's Diamond finished last.
Before that he had filled the same placing behind Signora Cabello in the Group 2 Prix Robert Papin at Maisons-Laffitte.
True Mason is expected to appreciate the likely ease in the ground and Burke, on the mark in this with Lord Shanakill (2008) and Toocoolforschool (2014), is hoping for another big weekend after hitting the target with Laurens and Havana Grey last Saturday and Sunday.
He said: "I don't think we've seen the best of True Mason yet and he's improving physically with every race. He ran a great race when third behind two classy fillies in France last time and goes there in great shape. The rain they've had would be a bonus."
Are in-form team the winning combination?
Shine So Bright represents the in-form team of Andrew Balding and Oisin Murphy and is taking on a few old rivals in The Irish Rover and Marie's Diamond.
Shine So Bright was sent off favourite for the Group 2 Gimcrack Stakes at York last time but had to settle for third behind Emaraaty Ana, just ahead of The Irish Rover.
Before that he filled the same berth behind Land Force at this level in the Richmond Stakes at Goodwood, with Marie's Diamond second.
As his youngster is by Oasis Dream, Balding is a little concerned about the ground if further rain hits Berkshire.
He said: "Shine So Bright has done nothing wrong in defeat the last twice and has an obvious chance. We're hopeful rather than confident that he'll handle this slower ground."
The Irish Rover's trainer Aidan O'Brien said: "He's been in good form since his run at Doncaster and we're happy with him. He has won over the course and distance."
Grounds to oppose Diamond?
Marie's Diamond is on a recovery mission after trailing in last of nine runners in the Prix Morny last time and his chances would be inhibited by any further rain.
The Footstepsinthesand colt had previously looked on an upward curve, landing the Group 3 Anglesey Stakes at the Curragh in July and then running second in the Richmond.
Trainer Mark Johnston is chasing a third win in this juvenile contest and his son Charlie said: "Marie's Diamond is in very good order. The horse has disappointed only twice in his life, at Epsom and Deauville, and both of those races were run on unsuitable ground.
"It looks an open renewal and, if he gets his ground, his performance in the Richmond Stakes should put him bang there."
Can Frankie follow up?
Frankie Dettori won this a year ago with a fine ride on James Garfield and is back with recent Kempton winner Kessaar, who is one of two runners for John Gosden.
The son of Kodiac bounced back from a below-par effort at Ripon when coming from off the pace on the all-weather to bag the Group 3 Sirenia Stakes, in which Konchek, who reopposes, finished fourth.
Gosden, who also fields dual winner Marhaba Milliar, said: "It's a better race but Kessaar is in good form and shouldn't mind any ease in the ground."
As for Konchek, his trainer Clive Cox said: "He's wearing a tongue-tie for the first time and hopefully that will help his chances. He didn't really agree with the all-weather at Kempton last time, but if he can bring the form of his second in the July Stakes to the table he'd have a chance."