Master Of The Seas made a winning comeback in the bet365 Earl Of Sefton Stakes at Newmarket, easily stalking the Megallan at the behest of high-racing driver William Buick.
Frankie Dettori set a moderate tempo aboard eventual second in the early stages, but Dante’s second was no match for Charlie Appleby’s now castrated son Dubawi, who came into contention when the pace increased in the last three stages.
It was only a matter of time before the 5-4 favorite ended the run, with last year’s 2000 Guineas runner-up looking to have a lot in hand on the line, winning by a length and A quarter.
Although holding a Lockinge entry, Appleby, the manager of Moulton Paddocks, is more tempted to target the Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot and work from there towards the destination of the next Master Of The Seas mission.
He said: “We were all wondering what might happen when we take the hood off. We took it off for his work on the lime kilns for the last 10 days and were pleased with what we saw, but he’s that kind of character you never know.
“The plan was to put the hood on the post and take it off because we felt at home, it dulled that toe turn that we saw there today.
“He was the class horse in the race, he always runs well here and I felt the nine furlongs were right in his compass.
“We saw what this horse almost achieved last year (in the Guineas) and it was frustrating to say the least.
“I’m just glad the horse got his head back. I’m a big believer in trusting people and horses, and he will have gained a lot of confidence from that.”
He added: “Where we present it next is something we can discuss over the next week, but William is very happy to bring it back a mile. He said he traveled there for fun and had picked up and done everything that needed to be done today against this society.
“I would personally think about missing the Lockinge and coming back from the Queen Anne with it. We could potentially find a stepping stone, but if not I would be very happy to go straight to Ascot.
“We fully respect William’s horse (Haggas, Baaeed) who will be tough to beat in the Lockinge and the way that horse is, we want to go to Ascot with confidence behind him.
“Everyone knows what an important meeting this is and hopefully we can bring him into the team as a great player.”