Prince Khaled Abdullah’s Cityscape, a tremendously impressive winner on World Cup night in Dubai, last month, when slamming smart opposition to land the Group 1 Dubai Duty Free by four-and-a-half-lengths from Mutahadee, has been put on standby to take his chance in the Group 1 Lockinge Stakes. Cityscape will serve as cover for the red-hot horse racing bet, Frankel, writes Elliot Slater.
Frankel had been expected to make his four-year-old bow in the high profile Newbury contest, but Abdullah’s superstar remains under a cloud, with rumours circulating daily about his lack of progress following a recent training injury. If the unbeaten Sir Henry Cecil-trained superstar proves unable to run at Newbury, then Roger Charlton’s Cityscape will run in his place, giving his owner a serious chance of landing the coveted prize with a horse who seems to be getting significantly better as he gets older.
Cityscape has reportedly returned in great shape from Dubai, and is a horse who appears to find international travel very much to his liking. Should Frankel recover in time for Newbury, then Cityscape may well be re-routed to Hong Kong for the extremely valuable BMW Champions Mile, on May 6, where a reproduction of his stunning effort in the Middle East at the end of March could well prove good enough to land the more than $800,000 first prize.
A winner of six of his 17 career starts, the son of Selkirk showed significantly improved form during his five-year-old campaign, last term, finishing a fine third to Canford Cliffs in the Group 1 Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot, before winning in Group 3 company at the Curragh. He then failed by only a short-head to catch the smart Dick Turpin in Group 1 company, in Italy, before winning at Saint Cloud. He then put in a great effort to fail by only a neck to win the Hong Kong Mile at Sha Tin, in December.