Hugo Palmer has sent Crimean Tatar on a mission to Veliefendi racecourse in Istanbul for a crack at the Bosphorus Cup. Get his verdict on the four-year-old colt's chances here...
"If he could win such a prestigious contest on his owner's home turf, it would be very special."
Crimean Tatar tackles the Bosphorus Cup on Sunday, and while there aren't many opportunities to race against five others for a Group 2 prize worth €180,000 to the winner, there is more to his running here than simple opportunity. His owner/breeder, Mr Araci, is Turkish, although himself descended from the Crimean Tatars, and that is the origin of the horse's name. If he could win such a prestigious contest on his owner's home turf, it would be very special.
He's travelled over well, which is always the first concern when taking horses to compete internationally. I was a bit concerned that he might find this coming too soon after a promising run in the Geoffrey Freer at Newbury prior to which he'd had a break after coming back all wrong from York's May meeting, but the reports are that he's very fresh in himself, which is encouraging. The going will be plenty fast enough, but arguably more suitable than at Newbury last time, and I'm hopeful of a big run.