A narrowly beaten second on his racecourse debut at Windsor last summer, the son of Zoffany went one better with a six-length success at Haydock before dominating the Mill Reef Stakes at Newbury.

With Varian deciding against giving his three-year-old a run in any of this week’s Guineas trials, Sakheer instead took to the Rowley Mile for a gallop in company with an older sprinting stablemate.

After initially taking a lead, Sakheer extended clear in the hands of David Egan, leaving Varian suitably satisfied ahead of the season’s first Classic in less than three weeks’ time.

“It was perfect to be honest. It was not meant to be a gut-busting work, but it got him a nice blow and he had a day away from home,” said the trainer.

“He got to experience the undulations, he was very well balanced through the work, he came out of the dip nicely, it was a bridle work but it was a strong work and he’ll come nicely forward from it.

“It was part of his schedule and he’s got a strong two weeks ahead of him. He’d only been here once before, so it was nice to give him experience of it.”

An unsatisfactory scope meant Sakheer missed an intended appearance in the Dewhurst in October, which would have at least answered some questions about his stamina.

As it is he will line up over the straight mile in the Guineas having not yet raced beyond six furlongs and Varian admits only time will tell whether he will stay the longer distance.

He added: “We are as confident as we can be and he’s bred to get the trip, even beyond a a mile. He was strong through the line in all of his starts, but he never ran further than six furlongs, so we won’t truly know until the Guineas because he is a quick horse.

“If he gets home he could be a very good miler, if he doesn’t we know we’ve got options back in trip. We wouldn’t be running him if we didn’t think he had a strong chance of getting a mile, but it won’t be proven until two weeks on Saturday.

“He’s got loads of ability and I thought he looked lovely today. He shows it at home but it’s nice to see it on a racecourse.

“He is a good horse, he looked it last year and looks it again this year. We’re not going to test him over a mile until the Guineas, so that is when we’ll find out.”

Varian was also pleased to see Sakheer apparently handling the rain-softened ground, adding: “I didn’t ask David about the ground but it looked to me as if he was fine on it.

“He’s been trained for the Guineas. If it was soft, combined with the trip, they are the two things he hasn’t encountered, but it’s been his target all year and if he’s fine I’m sure he’ll be here.

“He looks very good, but we’ve got to work out what his best conditions are.”

Another Varian-trained colt who could yet earn himself a tilt at Classic glory is Charyn.

Third behind Sakheer in the Mill Reef, the Dark Angel colt subsequently won a Group Two in France and will test his Guineas credentials in the Greenham Stakes at Newbury on Saturday.

“It is testing his water to see where he stands. He’s a different type, he’s very laid back and he needs a race,” said Varian.

“He’s also in the Newmarket Guineas and also in at the Curragh (Irish 2,000 Guineas). The Greenham will give is a guide. He’s a good horse, I like him.”

Varian also reported his St Leger winner Eldar Eldarov to be “in great form” ahead of a planned reappearance in next month’s Yorkshire Cup, with the Gold Cup at Royal Ascot his primary objective.