With the turf season just kicking off in Ireland, champion jockey Declan McDonogh has nominated Haatef as one horse he is particularly looking forward to this season.
The Danzig colt scored on his debut at the Curragh last season before running a mighty race for one so inexperienced when fourth behind Teofilo in the Dewhurst.
Kevin Prendergast’s charge has entries in both the Stan James 2000 Guineas and the Boylesports-sponsored Irish version, and McDonogh is looking forward to getting back aboard.
“I’ve sat on him a couple of times and we’re very happy with him – he’s done very well over the winter,” he said.
“It was only the second run of his life (in the Dewhurst) and I think he should have been third as he got hampered a bit by Holy Roman Emperor.
“He just came out under my nose and mine got taken back a little bit and I wasn’t expecting it. That probably cost him as he was only beaten a short-head for third. But he will have done well for the experience and he’s a nice prospect to have.”
Also high on McDonogh’s list are Prendergast’s fillies Evening Time and Miss Beatrix.
The former proved far too classy for her rivals in two races last season, while the latter endured a most profitable campaign and won both the Moyglare Stud Stakes and Goffs Million.
Of Evening Time, McDonogh told At The Races: “She again has done well over the winter. Physically she did well and I’ve sat on her a couple of times and she’s in good form.
“I’m not sure what the plan is with her. She might run in one of the trials and she’s in the Irish Guineas, but we’ll take it day by day with her and she’s one to look forward to.”
Miss Beatrix looks set to cross the Irish Sea in search of better ground for the Stan James 1000 Guineas at Newmarket on May 6.
“She’s done really well and it’s all systems go I think,” McDonogh said. "I think she goes to Newmarket for the (1000) Guineas and she might be one who wants the ground to be fast to be effective.
“It was nice ground the day she won the Million so we’d be hoping the ground at Newmarket might just suit her better.”