Poet’s Word stayed on strongly up the Sandown Park hill to claim the Matchbook Brigadier Gerard Stakes.
Ryan Moore positioned himself on the heels of leader Laraaib from the start, and as the runners came up the centre of the track, the Group Three event quickly became something of a match, despite Desert Encounter flattering briefly.
Responding well to his rider’s urgings, the Sir Michael Stoute-trained five-year-old took an advantage around a furlong and a half out and the 4-6 favourite extended it through the closing stages, with two and a quarter lengths being the winning margin.
The Saeed Suhail-owned victor had last been seen finishing second in the Sheema Classic on Dubai World Cup night at Meydan and was giving Stoute a 10th win in the race and Moore a fifth.
Stoute’s assistant, James Horton, said: “We are very happy. It was nice to get his head in front, he has run some big races in defeat the last five or six races and every time he has just bumped into one.
“It was lovely to get his head in front and hopefully we can go forward from here.”
He added: “I wouldn’t say this was always the plan. With a horse like him there are lots of options, as he is very versatile and goes on most ground. It was just finding the opportunity with the right track, right ground and right opposition.
“The aim of today was to get his head in front and have a good time, which I think he has.
“I don’t think either trip (10 or 12 furlongs) makes any difference to him. He has got a high cruising speed and a turn of foot and he stays very well.
“He is just a lovely horse to have. You can run him over a mile and a quarter and make use of him, or run him over a mile and a half and use that turn of foot.”