Alenquer is on course for the Dubai Sheema Classic after breaking the mile-and-a-quarter track record at Lingfield on Saturday.
William Haggas has always thought the world of the four-year-old who outgunned the classy Lord North in the Group Three Betway Winter Derby.
Haggas said he had been pleased with the German-bred colt’s preparation and the M M Stables-owned two-and-a-half-length winner will now go back up in trip at Meydan for the $6million Sheema Classic on March 26.
“I was very pleased with him,” said Haggas. “He had been training nicely and he won very nicely.
“He is obviously a talented horse who has run in a couple of Group Ones but he hasn’t won one yet. We are hoping this will be his year.
“I was very much worried by the drop back in trip in Saturday and the nature of the track, but it fell right for him – he got a nice lead and he didn’t make his own running, which we would have done if we’d had to.
“He picked up really well at the right time and possibly caught a really good horse (Lord North) on a rusty day. Maybe.
“He has run now three of his better races over this trip, but he is very capable over a mile and a half.
“The plan has always been to go to Dubai for the mile-and-a-half Sheema Classic, so I don’t see why that would have changed.”