Burrows happy to head to Paris with fresh Hukum

Arc contender will have just his third run of the year in Sunday’s Group one highlight.

Owen Burrows considers Hukum’s light campaign to be a help and not a hindrance ahead of his bid for the Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe.

The Shadwell-owned colt has been seen just twice this year, winning the Brigadier Gerard Stakes after almost a year off the track when making his seasonal debut in May.

He defeated Derby hero Desert Crown on that occasion and subsequently side-stepped Royal Ascot as the ground was unsuitably quick.

That left the horse off the track for 65 days when he lined up for a hugely-competitive renewal of the King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Stakes, but the absence did nothing to stop him edging out Ralph Beckett’s Westover by a head in thrilling finish.

There will be gap of a similar length between that performance and Sunday’s race and with the bay proven to go well fresh, Burrows has few concerns about his sparse season.

Hukum winning the Coronation Cup in 2022
Hukum winning the Coronation Cup in 2022 (Tim Goode/PA)

He said: “I’m more than happy to bring him in off the back of his King George win, he’s proven as he won first time in Dubai last year on Super Saturday.

“He won the Brigadier Gerard and then we weren’t able to run at Royal Ascot as the ground was a bit quick, so he went to the King George after a bit of a break.

“He’s obviously a horse who runs well fresh and we’re confident we can get him there in a good spot.”

Burrows has been satisfied with Hukum’s work since he was last seen on track, and is especially pleased with how he seems to be thriving at six after a serious injury robbed him of a year of racing following his 2022 Coronation Cup victory.

“We’ve been very pleased with him, obviously that (the King George) was at the end of July so he’s had a nice easy couple of weeks after that,” the trainer said.

Hukum defeating Desert Crown in the Brigadier Gerard Stakes
Hukum defeating Desert Crown in the Brigadier Gerard Stakes (Adam Davy/PA)

“We’ve had a nice amount of time to slowly bring him up for this very important race now.

“I think it’s pretty obvious to see with his form this year that he is better than ever, it looked last season like he was on the up when he won the Coronation Cup at Epsom.

“Unfortunately he picked up his injury there, which stopped his season, but from an early stage this year when we started working him again, he showed all his old enthusiasm and his work was better than ever.

“For whatever reason he looks as though he’s found a bit from somewhere this year, he was able to win the Brigadier Gerard over a mile and a quarter. He certainly is as as good as ever.”

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