TRAINER HUGHIE Morrison has reported that Al Basti Equiworld Dubai Dante Stakes entry Telecaster is in fine fettle ahead of a potential tilt at the £165,000 York feature on Thursday 16 May.
The son of New Approach, who inflicted a nine-length defeat on some fancied rivals in a Windsor novice last week, was one of 61 entries to stand their ground for the extended mile and a quarter Group 2 contest at the latest entries stage.
Having finished runner-up on his debut at Doncaster in March, Telecaster duly built on that promise when powering clear under Oisin Murphy last Monday, recording an eye-catching time and stamping himself as a colt with significant potential.
Morrison outlined on Wednesday that the Al Basti Equiworld Dubai Dante Stakes is under serious consideration for his charge but added: “It’s not cast in stone. That is the race we are aiming at, but we’ve still got three weeks between now and then and there’s the possibility we change our minds.
“He has been fine after Windsor and he’s always full of himself. He’s only had two races, but I’ll know if he hasn’t taken a race well when he’s not full of himself afterwards.
“He’s a horse who has grown up a lot over the winter and we are learning about him all the time. He has a high cruising speed, he gallops and he has obviously got a lot of ability.
“Should we head to the Dante we would go there with hope and I am sure he would run a nice race, but you have got to be realistic – we had the trials last week and we’ve got the Guineas to come – and I’m sure the Dante will be a very strong race.”
Telecaster is from a family Morrison knows well given he trained his dam, Shirocco Star, to finish second in the Investec Oaks and the Summerdown-based handler drew favourable comparisons between the two.
“He is quite similar to his mother,” Morrison continued. “She was naturally talented and they are both your classic, staying-looking horse with a bit of scope and a bit of leg. She had a high cruising speed and so does he – they both can gallop.”
Also included among the remaining entries for the Al Basti Equiworld Dubai Dante Stakes is last year’s champion two-year-old, Too Darn Hot, who was this week ruled out of the 2,000 Guineas by trainer John Gosden.
Emerging Newmarket-based talent, Charlie Fellowes, could saddle King Ottokar, who posted a noteworthy seasonal reappearance when claiming some well-regarded scalps in a conditions race at Newbury earlier in the month. While Aidan O’Brien – who has won the Al Basti Equiworld Dubai Dante Stakes four times in the last seven years – remains with a plethora of entries.
They include Broome, who romped home by eight lengths on his return in the Ballysax Stakes at Leopardstown and Cape Of Good Hope, who narrowly prevailed in Listed company at Epsom on Wednesday.
The Dante Festival runs from Wednesday 15 May to Friday 17 May inclusively.
For tickets please call 01904 620911 x 225 or visit www.yorkracecourse.co.uk<http://www.yorkracecourse.co.uk/>