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Criterion Thriving Ahead Of Juddmonte
Co-trainer Tom Dabernig has provided an update on the progress of star galloper Criterion who is in the UK preparing for next month's Gr1 Juddmonte International Stakes at York. Speaking to RSNs Shane Anderson yesterday, Dabernig, who trains in partnership with his uncle David Hayes, said the son of Sebring had thrived since his fifth placing behind Free Eagle in the Gr1 Prince Of Wales's Stakes at Royal Ascot in June. "David is over there with him at the moment. He did a bit of work earlier in the week [on the famous Limekilns gallops at Newmarket] and is in terrific order," Dabernig said. "He's really enjoying the European summer. He has a great coat on him and he's on track to run on the 19th August, and then he'll be on his way home. We will probably look at something like the Caulfield Stakes [Gr1, 10 October] into a Cox Plate [Gr1, 24 October]." He added: "He's actually carrying a little more weight than he was in the autumn here [in Australia]. He's actually put on weight. That's a good sign. It gives us something to work with and he will naturally tighten up now as his work increases leading into his race." Dabernig says he is expecting an improved showing from Criterion in the Juddmonte given that the horse had performed so creditably in the Prince Of Wales's despite suffering from a bout of travel sickness in the lead-up to the race. "His run at Ascot was good," Dabernig said. "He just over-travelled slightly and I think he will be better with that run under his belt. Also, when he arrived in the UK from Hong Kong he was a little off colour for a few days, he just got a little bit of travel sickness. We're lucky that he is such a tough horse and a real athlete as he was able to recover from it surprisingly quickly. So now that he is fully settled in he will be better for the run."