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Crowley anticipating Hukum progress ahead of Sheema test

Jim Crowley is expecting “considerable improvement” from Hukum in Saturday’s Longines Sheema Classic at Meydan.

The first jockey to the late Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum’s Shadwell Stable partnered the giant Hukum to a head victory over Without A Fight in his prep in the City Of Gold at the start of the month, which was the five-year-old entire’s fifth win from his last seven starts.

It also marked a first Group Two triumph for Hukum, who strictly on the book will need to raise his game at the weekend.

Jim Crowley will be aboard Hukum
Jim Crowley will be aboard Hukum (Steven Paston/PA)

Crowley said: “Hukum has been an absolutely fantastic horse to ride, and I think the Sheema is quite possibly stronger than the World Cup.

“It’s a very deep race and in one of that magnitude, you can’t leave any stone unturned.”

Reflecting on his Hukum’s first run at Meydan, the jockey added: “It was a very nice prep in the City Of Gold and I expect him to improve considerably from that.

“He’s only run once in a Group One when fifth in the St Leger and while I would have preferred an inside draw, I’m hoping to get a nice pitch early on (from stall 11).”

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