War Command justified strong market support to give Aidan O'Brien a third win in the Dubai Dewhurst Stakes at Newmarket.
- Related Content
The Coventry Stakes winner was sent off the 10/11 favourite and travelled powerfully through the early stages under the trainer's son Joseph. However he had to be asked a serious question to shake off Cable Bay inside the distance.
The son of War Front responded willingly to seize the initiative and score by a length-and-a-quarter from the gallant 20/1 runner-up.
Outstrip raced in the winner's slipstream but could never land a a blow in third while Anjaal was fourth despite never looking happy at any stage of the race.
The winning jockey told Channel 4 Racing: "The ground was plenty slow for him. When he got to the front he was idling like mad.
"He was waiting for a horse to come to him but did enough. I think he's getting more professional with each race.
"He's definitely a Guineas type. I think he will have no trouble getting a mile and I think the faster the ground, the better he will be."
O'Brien senior said: "I'm delighted with the horse as I was very worried about the ground. He's a good-actioned horse and when it was very quick at Ascot, that was what he wanted.
"There is only one Dewhurst and we had to get him out. I'd say he's done for the year now and I think he'll get a mile next season."
Cable Bay's trainer Charlie Hills said: "He ran another great race and he's been very consistent. How he hasn't won a Group race, I don't know.
- Photo Galleries/
- Future Champions Day
"We've been beaten just over a length by a good horse and hopefully he can keep progressing next year."
Charlie Appleby, responsible for the third home, Outstrip, said: "We're a bit disappointed as he didn't pick up like he did at Doncaster.
"Maybe it's just the year getting to him now. I think we'll put him away and if he can furnish and develop, hopefully we can see him as a Guineas horse."
Sky Bet cut the winner to 8/1 from 10/1 for the QIPCO 2000 Guineas and spokesman Michael Shinners said: "War Command was workmanlike in the Dewhurst but showed a good attitude and is clearly going to be a Guineas contender in the spring."
Mickael Barzalona received a two-day ban for using his whip above the permitted level aboard third home Outstrip.