Harp Star: 4-1 for the Sheema Classic at Meydan next monthPICTURE: Masakazu Takahashi
Harp Star set for
Sheema Classic prep
Japan: Harp Star, who will bid to give Ryan Moore successive victories in the Dubai Sheema Classic next month, warms up for the Meydan Group 1 at Kyoto on Sunday.
Moore won the Sheema Classic last year on Gentildonna, who also prepped in the Kyoto Kinen, a Grade 2 over 1m3f. She could manage only sixth, but bounced back to score on a famous night for the Japanese at Meydan.
Trained by Hiroyoshi Matsuda, Harp Star - Paddy Power's 4-1 favourite for the Sheema Classic and the mount of Yuga Kawada on Sunday - won the Japanese 1,000 Guineas last term before being edged out in their Oaks. She fared best of her country's three challengers when sixth in the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe and has been earmarked for a return to Paris this season.
Moore is in line to partner her on Dubai World Cup night on March 28 so connections of The Grey Gatsby, whom Moore steered to victory in the Prix du Jockey Club and Irish Champion Stakes last year, may have to look for another rider unless they opt to run the talented four-year-old in the Dubai Turf instead.
Harp Star's rivals in Sunday's race - worth about £680,000 - include Kizuna, the 2013 Japanese Derby winner who has been off since May last year.
The Arc, which he was fourth in in 2013, is also a long-term option for him.