Martyn Meade found it tough to contain his excitement after watching Eminent establish himself as a Qipco 2,000 Guineas candidate at last week’s Craven Meeting.
Meade, who picked up the Frankel colt for just 150,000 guineas after it had gone unsold at Tattersalls, recently insisted that the three-year-old had the potential to become the star of his Bury Road yard.
And Eminent provided a big indication that his trainer’s judgement would prove to be correct by winning Thursday’s Group Three bet365 Craven Stakes on the Rowley Mile.
After being held up on the near side by jockey Jim Crowley early on, Eminent started to draw clear of William Haggas’ Rivet and Benbatl on the rising ground.
It was a one-and-three-quarter length victory, dispelling any doubt over the horse’s mile-long credentials and doing so in the quickest Craven Stakes time for over 50 years.
“He just stays, that’s the thing,” said Meade.
“He doesn’t quicken too much, but the way that he hit the dip there, he (Crowley) held him together nicely.
“I knew in that position that they were not going to stop him.
“He is a magnificent striding horse and at home he does not look as if he’s doing anything, but today he’s proved that he can do it with those Group horses.”
That performance saw Eminent’s odds tumble from 33/1 to 8/1 with the bookmakers for next weekend’s 2,000 Guineas, making him the field’s shortest-priced British-trained colt.
Meanwhile, Newmarket trainer John Gosden confirmed that both Daban and Dabyah are entered in the Qipco 1,000 Guineas.
However, in a bid to avoid a clash between the stable-mates, Dabyah is more likely to instead run at the Poule d’Essai des Pouliches in France.
“Daban physically came to hand very quickly, but her win in the Nell Gwyn will have brought her along mentally and she now goes for the 1,000 Guineas,” said Gosden.
“Dabyah ran well in France last year and the plan is for her to return there to run in the Poule d’Essai des Pouliches at Deauville.
“I’m going to leave her in the Qipco 1000 Guineas and if anything happened to Daban I’d switch her to Newmarket.”