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Oxx - ground key to Khan run

Wed, 15 August 2012

John Oxx will leave it late before deciding whether Native Khan will take his chance in the Desmond Stakes at Leopardstown on Thursday.

The four-year-old will be having just his third start for Oxx if he does line up in the Group Three contest over a mile, having been trained by Ed Dunlop previously, finishing third in the Derby at Epsom.

The Azamour colt then reappeared for Oxx and finished third behind Famous Name in a Curragh Group Three before filling the same position behind the same horse at Leopardstown last time.

"He won't run if the ground turns soft but we will have a look in the morning or maybe even the afternoon and make a decision from there," he said.

"It still may be OK to run him, we wouldn't mind slowish side of good or good to soft. We are keen to run him though as he was off for a year and still seems a bit rusty and he needs a bit of racing to shake that off.

"We are dropping back to a mile but he was third to Frankel over that distance so he should be fine. He's very adaptable from a mile to 10 furlongs and I would expect we would step him back up to a mile and a quarter next time."

Oxx is also represented by Takar, a comfortable Group Three winner at the Curragh.

"He likes soft ground but we were hoping for good ground as we wanted to see how he handles it and if he's as good on it," he said.

"But he does like it soft and he should run well and seems in good form. Duntle was a nice winner at Ascot and has a slightly higher rating than us and will be getting 6lb, so she could be the one to beat.

"His (Takar) last race was a bit of a penalty kick really and you wouldn't write too much into that form so we will see how he goes."

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