Horses To Follow » Khaadem


Khaadem could only finish fifth in the Listed Hopeful Stakes at Newmarket on Saturday, but he ran much better than that. Drawn on the wing, effectively nine of nine, he was sharply away and keen early on, with the result that Andrea Atzeni couldn’t get him back and covered up behind runners in his first-time blinkers. He showed lots of pace though, he travelled really well on the far side, and he moved easily into the lead on the run to the two-furlong marker. He was the last horse in the race to come off the bridle and, when his rider went for him, he picked up nicely, he led by daylight as they raced inside the final furlong, which is probably the point at which he traded at 2.12 in-running. He couldn’t sustain his effort, however. He weakened on the run up the hill, as his early exertions took their toll, fading to finish fifth.

There was still plenty to take out of this run by Charlie Hills’ horse. He was beaten three lengths by the winner Summerghand, but he was only beaten a neck and a nose for third. More than that, he expended energy unnecessarily in trying to go faster than his rider wanted him to go through the first furlong and a half. The first-time blinkers obviously lit him up, and that was exacerbated by the fact that he was sharply away from his draw on the wing. He did show lots of pace, and he would be interesting now dropped to five furlongs. He would also be interesting over six furlongs again, as long as he could settle better than he did on Saturday, perhaps drawn in among horses and racing just behind the pace. He is a talented horse, he finished fourth in the July Cup and in the Diamond Jubilee last year, and he won the Stewards’ Cup in 2019 by almost three lengths off a mark of 107, reaching a high of 116. He retains lots of speed, and it is interesting that connections have entered him in the Listed Scarborough Stakes over five furlongs next Wednesday at Doncaster, a track at which he won a conditions race as a juvenile on his only visit.
Newmarket, 28th August 2021