Haggas opts for Craven prep with Racing Post Trophy winner
Racing Post Trophy winner Rivet will not run at Newcastle on Good Friday and instead wait for the bet365 Craven Stakes at Newmarket Thursday week, trainer William Haggas has revealed.
The son of Fastnet Rock, part-owned by Haggas's father-in-law Lester Piggott and Coolmore, was a best-priced 3-1 for his potential clash with Syphax and South Seas in Newcastle's £100,000 32Red Burradon Conditions Stakes - but Haggas has instead opted for a fact-finding mission over the Guineas course and distance.
"I was very tempted by Newcastle but I need to find something out about Newmarket," said Haggas. "The jockey said he didn't like the track last year and I have a niggling doubt that wasn't the reason that he didn't run to form so I would like to find out before the Guineas."
Rivet is a best-priced 20-1 shot with Coral and Stan James for the Qipco 2,000 Guineas.
Andrew Balding's Qatar-owned South Seas and Kevin Ryan's Godolphin-owned Syphax are set to clash in the mile event.
On South Seas, who was second to Thunder Snow in the Group 1 Criterium International, Balding said: "The intention is to run. It's a competitive race - as it should be for the prize-money.
"We're very happy with his fitness levels and he had a good spin this morning. It will be his first time racing on an artificial surface, which is the one question mark, but he regularly works on something similar. He's entered in four different Guineas so we'll see how he gets on in his trial and then make a decision."
Ryan's unbeaten Group 3 Acomb winner was bought by Godolphin this winter and the trainer added: "The plan is to run. He's wintered well and we want to get a run into him.
"He's in the Dante and the Derby and this is a nice starting point and hopefully he'll run very well. We'll see what happens on Friday before firming up plans but at the moment we'd be leaning towards the Dante and Derby rather than the Guineas."
Haggas will have runners on Good Friday with Muffri’Ha, beaten half a length by Decorated Knight in the Group 1 Jebel Hatta, and Second Thought in action at Lingfield on all-weather championships finals day.
Haggas added: "Muffri'Ha has been running with great credit over in Meydan but the danger is that she's dropping back in trip. She's against her own sex so should have a chance.
"Second Thought may want a bit further as he stayed on well over seven furlongs last time but he's got a turn of foot and seems in good form so I'm hoping he'll run very well. He's the highest rated horse but it'll be very competitive and the draw will be important."