Khaloosy has an opportunity to prove to his high-profile connections that he is the real deal at Group-race level in the Bonhams Thoroughbred Stakes at Goodwood on Friday.
Roger Varian’s grey was a revelation as he scooted to an emphatic victory in the Britannia Stakes at Royal Ascot, putting almost five lengths of daylight between himself and the rest in what is always one of the most competitive handicaps of the season.
Even those closest to Khaloosy were witnessing his evident Pattern potential for the first time.
Although he was also a very impressive winner of his previous and only second career start, in a Wolverhampton novice last November, he appears to save his best for the track rather than galloping stablemates into the ground at home in between.
Angus Gold, racing manager for owner Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum, therefore reports this step up to Group Three company will be something of a voyage into the unknown.
He said: “He certainly looked good (at Ascot), the way he won, the way he quickened inside the last furlong.
“He’s a hard horse to gauge at home – he never does anything in a flashy manner.
“It was very nice to see him do that, and we have particularly kept him for this race – which is going to tell us a lot more.
“You’re jumping up from a handicap a grade or two. We’re all learning about him, so we’ll find out – he’s not an extravagant mover, he’s not an extravagant worker.”
Further compelling racecourse evidence is required, before more big plans are made.
Gold added: “We always hoped from the way he won his maiden that he was going to make a nice horse.
“But having not been able to get a run into him before Ascot, it was particularly nice to see him do that.
“The acceleration was what we didn’t know he had, so we’ve got to see if he can produce it going up in grade.”
Khaloosy is set to face four opponents in Charlie Hills’ wide-margin Newcastle all-weather winner Tilsit, Richard Hannon’s Mystery Power, Kevin Ryan’s Repartee and the William Haggas-trained My Oberon.
Mystery Power finished down the field on his first start of 2020 in the Jersey Stakes at Royal Ascot, but raised his game to take second in a Listed event on the July Course three weeks ago.
Hannon said: “He ran a much better race last time out at Newmarket. He is immensely talented and has now lost his Group Two penalty, which will make things easier.
“The race looks like it has cut up quite a bit, although Khaloosy looks like he will be very hard to beat as he was impressive last time at Royal Ascot.
“The drying ground won’t bother him and he is a horse that is very capable of being competitive.”
My Oberon was an impressive six-length length winner on his second career start in a York maiden recently.
Newmarket trainer Haggas said: “He is interesting.
“It’s obviously a big jump in class for him, but he is quite smart and I thought he was impressive at York.
“It’s quite a strong contest, but I’m hopeful he’ll run a nice race.”