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Master Of The Seas returns to Newmarket in style

Master Of The Seas made a winning return in the bet365 Earl Of Sefton Stakes at Newmarket, hunting down the pace-setting Megallan with ease when asked by big-race rider William Buick.

Frankie Dettori set a moderate tempo aboard the eventual second in the early stages, but the Dante second proved no match for Charlie Appleby’s now-gelded son of Dubawi, who cruised into contention when the pace increased inside the final three furlongs.

It was only a matter of time before the 5-4 favourite put the race to bed, with last year’s 2000 Guineas runner-up looking to have plenty in hand at the line, winning by a length and a quarter.

Although holding a Lockinge entry, Moulton Paddocks handler Appleby is more tempted to target the Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot and work back from there for the destination of Master Of The Seas’ next assignment.

He said: “We were all wondering what could happen when we took the hood off. We’ve taken it off for his work on the Limekilns in the last 10 days and been happy with what we’ve seen, but he’s that sort of character that you just never know.

“The plan was to put the hood on down to post and take it off as we just felt at home that it was blunting that turn of foot that we saw there today.

“He was the class horse in the race, he always runs well here and I felt the nine furlongs was well within his compass.

“We saw what this horse nearly achieved last year (in the Guineas) and he’s been a touch frustrating to say the least.

“I’m just pleased the horse has got his head back in front. I’m a big believer in getting confidence into people and horses, and he’ll have gained a lot of confidence from that.”

He added: “Where we’ll pitch him next is something we can discuss over the next week or so, but William is very happy to bring him back to a mile. He said he travelled for fun there and picked up and did everything that needed to be done today against that company.

“Personally, I would be thinking miss the Lockinge and work back from the Queen Anne with him. We could potentially find a stepping-stone, but if not I would be quite happy to go straight to Ascot.

“We fully respect William’s horse (Haggas, Baaeed) will be tough to beat in the Lockinge and the way this horse is, we want to be going into Ascot with confidence behind him.

“Everyone knows what an important meeting that is and hopefully we can bring him into the team as a big player.”

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