The 2016 Eskimo Prince Stakes field has been released and Pride Of Dubai is set to take on ten rivals in the Group 3 event at Royal Randwick on Saturday.
Pride Of Dubai has not been seen at the races since he took out the Group 1 Sires Produce Stakes (1400m) at Royal Randwick on April 6 last year and he missed the 2015 Spring Racing Carnival due to injury, but he showed that he was ready for a return to racing when he performed strongly in two barrier trials at Royal Randwick on January 12 and Warwick Farm on January 25.
Co-trainer Peter Snowden is happy with the physical condition of Pride Of Dubai, but he admits that the Street Cry colt will take a great deal of improvement out of his first-up run.
Pride Of Dubai is joined in the 2016 Eskimo Prince Stakes field by stablemate Wolf Cry, who returned to the races with a very comfortable win in the Magic Millions Maiden (1200m) at the Gold Coast on January 9.
Another trainer with multiple runners in the 2016 Eskimo Prince Stakes is Chris Waller, who has included both Counterattack and Torgersen in the acceptances.
Counterattack started his spring campaign with a win in the Listed Heritage Stakes (1100m) at Royal Randwick on September 19 and he added another win in the Listed Brian Crowley Stakes (1200m) at Royal Randwick on October 17 before he finished a more than credible third behind stablemate Japonisme in the Group 1 Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) at Flemington on October 31.
Waller has a big opinion of Counterattack and the son of Redoute’s Choice is set to make the trip down to Melbourne for the Group 1 Newmarket Handicap (1200m) at Flemington on March 12.
Torgersen is yet to make his debut at black-type level, but he finished his summer campaign with impressive wins at Rosehill Gardens on November 21 and Royal Randwick on December 5.
Godolphin will also have two runners in the Eskimo Prince Stakes in the form of Tarquin and Shards, who are both set to return to the races for the first time this preparation.
One of the most interesting horses in the Eskimo Prince Stakes field is Zoutenant, who is set to make his first race start since joining the stable of Gai Waterhouse.
Zoutenant has not been seen at the races since he finished second behind Exosphere in the Group 2 Roman Consul Stakes (1200m) at Royal Randwick on October 3 and he produced an impressive barrier trial at the same venue on January 12.
The consistent Voilier, Gerald Ryan-trained Spill The Beans, last start winner Le Romain and promising colt Cannyescent round out the 2016 Eskimo Prince Stakes field.