Enemy hunting Henry II honours at Sandown

Horse Racing

Ian Williams’ runner gunning for Group Three gold.

Ian Williams’ Enemy returns to Sandown for another crack at the Racehorse Lotto Henry II Stakes on Thursday.

The six-year-old spent his winter in the Middle East and returned significantly richer having won the Dubai Racing Club Classic at Meydan before a second-placed finish in the highly valuable Red Sea Turf Handicap in Saudi Arabia.

He then came home eighth in the Dubai Gold Cup back at Meydan in late March, after which he began his domestic campaign in the Group Three Ormonde Stakes at Chester’s May meeting.

Enemy was fifth behind by William Haggas’ Hamish in the Roodee feature, though Williams feels he fared well considering the testing conditions and will be more at home on better ground in Esher, where Frankie Dettori takes the ride.

“The ground probably got a little bit too soft for him at Chester last time, but he acquitted himself well and remains in good form,” the trainer said.

“Conditions should be more to suit on Thursday.”

Enemy was fifth in the Group Three race last season as Quickthorn prevailed for Hughie Morrison, but the run was luckless and Williams feels the gelding was not shown to best effect.

He said: “I don’t know that it’s not a deeper race but the way that race was won last year, he got a long way out and had a lot of ground to make up, so I think you can put a line through that.”

Elsewhere is Andrew Balding’s Nate The Great, second last season and fifth behind Silver Sonic and Enemy in the Red Sea at Riyadh.

Haggas’ Roberto Escobarr joins the line-up, as do Harry and Roger Charlton’s Sleeping Lion and Hiroo Shimizu’s French-trained Princess Anne.

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