Excitement builds for Arcanada team before Topkapi Trophy test
With more than £800,000 of prize-money on offer, it is perhaps a little surprising that more British-trained horses have not made the trip to Istanbul to take part in one of three Group races at Veliefendi on Sunday.
The feature of the Longines-sponsored card is the Group 2 Topkapi Trophy over a mile, in which the Tom Dascombe-trained Arcanada is among the five-strong British contingent. Among the owning Arcanada Partnership group is Alan Cronshaw, whose excitement at racing for a share of the £392,308 pot is palpable.
"The team at Manor House turn him out superbly and he's just so laid back," said Cronshaw as he visited the four-year-old at the stables on Saturday morning.
"It was Tom's idea to come, it was always in the back of his mind and we were happy to go for it. It's great prize-money and it'd take a lot of winning back home to get this kind of money.
"We always thought he would be a better horse as a four-year-old because he's such a big horse and he's toughened up. He's spot on now and we're very hopeful."
Among the opposition is arguably the biggest star on show at Veliefendi with Dream Castle, the first son of Frankel to step onto the track in Turkey. The Qipco 2,000 Guineas fifth is one of two Saeed Bin Suroor-trained runners, with stablemate Carry On Deryck also taking his chance.
"Dream Castle is a tough horse and always works really nicely," said Bin Suroor. "I was very happy with his latest piece of work on the Limekilns and the mile on turf will suit him.
"Carry On Deryck ran well on his comeback at Salisbury earlier this month. He's been in good form since and is also best suited by a mile. I'm looking forward to a good performance from both horses."
Trainer Simon Dow has also made the trip east with Mr Scaramanga and while he is realistic about the scale of the task the horse faces on ratings, he believes it is worth taking a chance.
"He seems to thrive for going on an aeroplane," said Dow. "The faster they go the better and he should love the sharp track and quick ground."
The experienced Kool Kompany rounds off the British challenge, with Wonnemond and Diplomat also in the race for Germany.