Former Darley gallopers Long John and Paximadia are both set to make their debuts in the famous blue colours of Godolphin in the UAE 2000 Guineas (1600m) at Meydan on Thursday.
Long John and Paximadia were transferred from the Darley stable of Peter Snowden in Australia to the Godolphin stable of Charlie Appleby in Dubai at the end of their 2013 Spring Racing Carnival campaigns and have both reportedly settled in well to their new environments.
Long John will be returning to the races for the first time since he finished ninth behind Shamus Award in the Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley on October 26.
The Street Cry gelding started his spring preparation with a third place finish behind Cauthen and Shamus Award in the Listed McKenzie Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley on August 24 before stamping himself as a Group 1 contender with an impressive win in the Listed Henry Bucks Best Dressed Stakes (1400m).
He ran home strongly to finish third in the Group 3 Caulfield Guineas Prelude (1400m) on September 29 and recorded his maiden Group 1 victory with an impressive victory in the Caulfield Guineas (1600m) on October 12.
Snowden elected to start Long John in the Cox Plate, after much deliberation, and the three-year-old was well backed in the lead-up to the race, but faded in the final stages and finished seventh and a half lengths behind the winner.
Paximadia did not reach the heights of Long John during his 2013 Spring Racing Carnival campaign, but produced a number of strong performances that indicated he would be ready to step up to Group 1 level in the autumn.
The Commands colt resumed with a comfortable win in the Listed Vintage Stakes (1410m) at Flemington on October 5, but produced an uncharacteristically poor performance in the Listed Gothic Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield a fortnight later.
Paximadia returned to the winners stall with a narrow win over Hucklebuck in the Group 3 Carbine Club Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on Victoria Derby Day and he had his final race start with another strong victory in the Group 2 Sandown Guineas (1600m) at Caulfield on November 16.
Long John and Paximadia will be joined in the UAE 2000 Guineas file by stablemates Emirates Flyer and Safety Check.