James Doyle has acclaimed Poet’s Word as one of the “toughest horses he has ridden” ahead of a high-class Juddmonte International at York on Wednesday.
Sir Michael Stoute’s stable star, who has already won the Prince of Wales’s Stakes and the King George this season, is one of eight runners in what looks set to be one of the races of the year.
“He’s a worthy favourite coming off the back of successive Group One wins in tough races and, as you can imagine, I’m excited about riding him in the top race of week,” said Doyle.
“He’s as tough a horse as I’ve ever ridden – he doesn’t shirk the issue. He really put his head and neck down in the King George and stretched all the way to the line. He was very brave.”
Doyle does not see the issue of dropping back down in trip causing a problem, either.
“He’s versatile and showed a good kick in the Prince of Wales’s,” said the jockey ahead of the latest leg of the Qipco British Champions Series.
“He’s got plenty of other good form over a mile and quarter, too, such as when beaten a neck in the Irish Champion Stakes.”