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A pre-booked holiday to Europe will also give David Hayes the chance to check on the progress of Criterion as the horse builds up to another English start.

The Hayes-trained Criterion finished fifth in the Group One Prince Of Wales’s Stakes at Royal Ascot and has stayed in the UK to run in the Juddmonte International at York in August before returning to Australia in the spring for the Cox Plate.

Hayes returned to Australia after Royal Ascot but said he would see Criterion in England next week and again at the end of his holiday.

“By coincidence we booked a holiday a long time ago in Europe, so I’m book-ending my little holiday where I’ll see him before I go on holidays and on the way home,” Hayes said.

“I’m doing a bit of a working holiday over there.”

Criterion has been given a short freshen-up after Royal Ascot and Hayes says the reports are good.

“I’ve given him a couple of easy weeks in the paddock and he’s loving the warm weather over there,” Hayes said.

“He’s just doing light canters. He goes back into John Gosden’s stable after the weekend.”

Hayes’s son Ben is working as a pupil assistant to Gosden and has been looking after Criterion along with Roy McCormick.

“I’ll give him (Criterion) a bit of striding work to see where he’s at next week, and I’ll give him a strong gallop before I come home which should let me know where I’m at with him,” Hayes said.

“And then he’ll have a couple of weeks building up to the Juddmonte.”

Earlier this year, the Juddmonte Stakes was ranked the best race in the world by the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities, beating races the calibre of the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe and the Breeders’ cup.

 
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