Victory Bond and Dubai Warrior are set to clash again in a fascinating renewal of the Listed Betway Quebec Stakes at Lingfield.
The pair met at Chelmsford in November, with Dubai Warrior lifting the prize and Victory Bond third.
The latter has since hit winning form over this course and distance, but his trainer William Haggas feels it will be tough on Saturday because Dubai Warrior has a pull in the weights.
He said: “Victory Bond is doing very well. He’s got a bit to find with John Gosden’s horse (Dubai Warrior) – he’s better off with us.
“Our horse loves Lingfield, and James (Doyle) rides him particularly well. He’s got a sporting each-way chance.”
Victory Bond was crowned All-Weather Horse of the Year in 2018, thanks mainly to his gutsy success in the Easter Classic on Finals Day.
Dubai Warrior was a fancy for this year’s Investec Derby, after making a winning debut at Chelmsford last November.
Gosden’s charge was then forced to miss the first half of 2019 with a hoof injury, but has come back in good form.
He will be ridden by Robert Havlin, who is expecting a bold show from the three-year-old.
“He’s in good form, and I think a small field on Saturday will suit him,” Havlin told Sky Sports Racing.
“He lost his way a bit, but has shown a preference for the all-weather. Hopefully everything is back on track, and we expect a big run.”
Gosden’s other runner Court House was second to stablemate Wissahickon in the Winter Derby over the course and distance in February.
But the four-year-old has not raced since finishing sixth in the Easter Classic in April.
Kasbaan, trained by Mick Appleby, finished second behind Dubai Warrior at Chelmsford, but was then only third to Victory Bond at Lingfield.
Jockey Alistair Rawlinson believes that was not a true reflection of his ability, though.
He said: “He ran very well in those races at Kempton (back-to-back wins in September). We think he’s a really nice horse.
“He got beat by Dubai Warrior at Chelmsford when we met the first time. Then he ran at Lingfield just to get him used to the track, and we got the tactics wrong that day.
“On Saturday, I believe you’ll see him a better light.”
Dalgarno has already qualified for this season’s Betway Easter Classic after flashing home to take a fast-track qualifier at Deauville last month.
That was only his fourth start for Jane Chapple-Hyam, having previously been trained in France by Nicolas Clement.
Chapple-Hyam said: “Dalgarno is in good order. We were delighted with his performance at Deauville, and it is great that he has already qualified for finals day.
“Saturday is a good opportunity to test him around Lingfield, because I am keen to see if he will handle the track, and we will run here before deciding whether he runs again before finals day.”