Man Of Promise makes a case for sprinting stardom

Following Blue Point’s retirement, Godolphin trainer Charlie Appleby may have found his ideal successor

Future star: Charlie Appleby’s charge Man Of Promise is taking aim at the G1Al Quoz Sprint at the Dubai World Cup. — Dubai Racing Club
Future star: Charlie Appleby’s charge Man Of Promise is taking aim at the G1Al Quoz Sprint at the Dubai World Cup. — Dubai Racing Club

By Leslie Wilson Jr

Published: Wed 9 Mar 2022, 11:59 PM

Last updated: Thu 10 Mar 2022, 12:00 AM

Charlie Appleby has made history in the UK, USA and America and now the Godolphin handler turns his sights on the UAE, his home-away-from home, as he seeks to rewrite the record books and become the first trainer to win the $1million Al Quoz Sprint (G1) three times.

Appleby’s previous successes in the 1,200 metre turf contest came in 2019 with Jungle Cat and 2000 with Blue Point, one of Godolphin’s all-time sprinting stars and the fastest horse ever over six furlongs at Ascot.

Following Blue Point’s retirement to Darley’s Kildangan Stud in Ireland, the search began for his successor and it did not take long for Appleby to uncover another sprinting talent in Man Of Promise, who announced himself as a future star when landing the G3 Nad Al Sheba Turf Sprint at Super Saturday on March 5.

The manner in which the five-year-old put his rivals to the sword in the trial for the Al Quoz Sprint was clinical, just as it was brutal, William Buick easing his mount close to home after opening up a gap of four and three-quarter lengths.

There is no overstating that Man Of Promise is a very serious printer who looks set to be campaigned in all the big races upon his return to the UK in the summer, a campaign that Blue Point was inducted in a couple of season ago.

“That was one of those comfortable races to watch.,” Appleby said after the Super Saturday performance. “I have never seen him look so well.

“He is a year older and I am a big believer that these sprinters take their time to mature. Even walking through the tunnel, I said to Sophie [Chretien, assistant trainer] that he has never looked so well.

“He has a sprinter’s backend on him now, for a little horse because he is not the most robust horse in the world, but he has done very well of late.’

“It was a good performance and William said that if he can produce the same in three weeks’ time, we could be dealing with a potential Al Quoz Sprint winner.”

However, Appleby is not someone who gets carried away easily and was prepared to put Man Of Promises’ potential into proper perspective.

“The Al Quoz is going to be a great race and some of the other horses are going to come forward. They will come forward and I am sure it will be a different race on Al Quoz night, it always is,” said the reigning British Champion.

William Buick joined Appleby in lavishing praise on the Godolphin sprinter.

“That really was impressive and, however good Man Of Promise looked, he felt every bit as good. He has proved that he is the real deal and, with a performance like that, he has to be taken seriously in the Al Quoz Sprint.”

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