Godolphin: Saeed bin Suroor aims Farhh at Lockinge, Newbury

Godolphin trainer Saeed bin Suroor

JLT Lockinge Stakes

Venue:
Newbury racecourse
Date:
Saturday, 18 May
Time:
15:50 BST
Coverage:
Updates on BBC radio 5 live, report/results on BBC Sport website

Trainer Saeed bin Suroor will seek his first British winner of 2013 this week as he hopes runners at York and Newbury can boost the Godolphin operation.

The team founded by Sheikh Mohammed has seen trainer Mahmood Al Zarooni banned for eight years after a doping scandal.

Bin Suroor, who runs another Newmarket stable for Godolphin, has Farhh in Saturday's Lockinge Stakes at Newbury.

"We try to run our horses in the big races and it would be great to see him run well in the Lockinge," he said.

The trainer also intends to run Epsom Derby entry Secret Number in Thursday's Dante Stakes at York.

"He worked really nicely on Sunday. He won well in Dubai, and ran well [third] also in the UAE Derby when he came from behind," Bin Suroor added.

"Last week and Sunday most of our horses worked really well - 85% of them are fit and ready to run. Soon you will see more runners coming from our stable."

Bin Suroor, who had 47 wins from 305 runners in the UK last year, has only sent out 12 runners in Britain during 2013 so far and is without a victory, although Godolphin as a whole have enjoyed success internationally and own 51% of 2000 Guineas winner and Epsom Derby favourite Dawn Approach, who is trained in Ireland by Jim Bolger.

Bin Suroor had applied to take temporary charge of 200 or so runners formerly trained by Al Zarooni at Moulton Paddocks stable in Newmarket, but the British Horseracing Authority says the licence cannot be changed until the results of further doping tests are known, and a new trainer would have to wait a further 14 days after that to take over.

The four-year-old Farhh represents a decent chance for Bin Suroor and Godolphin to secure a fifth Lockinge winner, although the trainer believes he will be better over a mile and a quarter, with the Prince of Wales's Stakes at Royal Ascot next month a potential target.

He said the horse, who was second four times last season including twice behind the world's top-rated horse Frankel, has been unsound with injuries during his two and three-year-old campaigns.

With Frankie Dettori, who rode Farhh in his last five races, completing the end of a six-month drugs ban and now freelance after splitting from Godolphin, the ride goes to Silvestre de Sousa.

Opposition on Saturday will include seven-year-old Cityscape, trained by Roger Charlton, along with Aidan O'Brien pair Declaration of War and Reply, plus Richard Hannon's 2012 Craven Stakes winner Trumpet Major, German challenger Ameron and supplementary entry Fencing.

"It's an open race but Cityscape is the horse to beat," said Bin Suroor.

Charlton said it was a chance for his horse to establish himself as the champion miler in the absence of the retired Frankel [the 2012 winner] and Excelebration.

"He has come to hand well in the last couple of weeks and I'm very happy with him. He's been remarkably consistent - I think he has run in seven or eight different countries," he said.

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