GORDON LORD BYRON should have a nice prep-race before heading for Dubai and the Golden Shaheen. Tom Hogan's charge capped a superb 2012 by landing the Group 1 Prix La Foret at Longchamp before a fine run in the Hong Kong Mile in December and though undoubtedly needing this to put the edge on him he's the proverbial mile clear on official ratings. Clancy Avenue and Burn The Boats both have the advantage of a recent track success and the former looks the one for the forecast as he's improving fast and won easily three weeks ago. Battleroftheboyne is a decent enough handicapper on ground with some give but has never won on an all-weather surface and hasn't been seen since September.
Gordon Lord Byron (IRE) 11-1 (9-0) 4th of 12, 2 1/2l behind Ambitious Dragon (9-0) at Sha Tin(HK) 1m Grp 1 (1) gd in Dec.
Battleroftheboyne (IRE) 10-1 (9-10) Led, headed halfway, weakened over 2f out, tailed off, last of 16, well behind Bubbly Bellini (9-0) at Curragh 6f hcp in Sep.
Burn The Boats (IRE) 5-4fav (9-7) Tracked leaders travelling strongly, in front 1 1/2f out, stayed on strongly to go clear final furlong, very easily, won at Dundalk 1m mdn clm pol in Jan beating Diamond Daze (8-10) by 5l, 10 ran.
Clancy Avenue (USA) 5-4fav (9-5) Tracked leaders in 5th, smooth headway to lead under 2f out, soon asserted and kept on well inside final furlong, won at Dundalk 6f mdn stks pol in Feb beating Connacht Council (9-0) by 3 1/2l, 14 ran.