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Thursday, July 22, 2010


Trainer Chris Wall is hoping that Premio Loco can continue his rich vein of form in the £316,500 Group One Sussex Stakes (2.45pm), after the six-year-old was supplemented by connections at a cost of £19,500 for the mile contest, highlight of the second day of Glorious Goodwood on Wednesday, July 28.

Premio Loco, who joins 12 horses going forward at the six-day confirmation stage, is unbeaten in his two previous starts, having followed up success in the seven-furlong Group Three Criterion Stakes at Newmarket on June 26 with a career-best effort when posting a length victory in the Group Two Summer Mile at Ascot on July 10.

Wall reported today: “We have supplemented Premio Loco for the Sussex Stakes and it is his most likely target at Glorious Goodwood. We gave him the option of the Betfair Cup as a fall-back but this looks a good opportunity for a chance in Group One company.

“He won well at Ascot and one could argue that he could have done it rather more convincingly with a clearer run. He has continued to be in good form at home since that race and he has also won the Listed On The House Stakes on his only previous start at Goodwood.

“We looked at the last forfeit stage for the Sussex Stakes and we had finished in front of the vast majority of the entries. We haven’t come up against Canford Cliffs and Rip Van Winkle and, on their day, they are proper horses so they won’t be easy to beat.

“But we might as well have a crack at the them while we are fit and well and everything is in our favour.”

The trainer with the strongest hand in the Sussex Stakes appears to be Richard Hannon, who has the brilliant Irish 2,000 Guineas and St James’s Palace Stakes victor Canford Cliffs still, along with Dick Turpin, who was second to his stable companion at Royal Ascot before impressing in the Group One Prix Jean Prat at Chantilly last time out on July 4.

Also included among the 13 going forward for the Sussex Stakes is last year’s victor, the Aidan O’Brien-trained Rip Van Winkle, who is bidding to bounce back from a disappointing seasonal reappearance in the Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot and become the first dual winner. O’Brien, seeking a fifth success in the mile contest, could also be represented by last year’s Group One Dewhurst Stakes victor Beethoven, Black Quartz, Encompassing and Steinbeck. There is a sixth Irish-trained contender in the shape of Dermot Weld’s Famous Name, runner-up in the 2008 French Derby and successful on both his starts over a mile this season.

Godolphin’s trainer Saeed bin Suroor, who has won the Sussex Stakes on three previous occasions, relies on the Group One-placed Alexandros, while Andrew Balding’s Dream Eater, who finished third in both the Queen Anne Stakes and the Summer Mile at Ascot, is another possible starter.

The confirmations also include Beacon Lodge from the Clive Cox stable, who finished sixth behind Rip Van Winkle last year, and the Stef Higgins-trained veteran Mac Love, who could make his first appearance since winning the Group Three Select Racing UK On Sky 432 at Goodwood on September 12 last year.

Wednesday, July 28, also features top-quality two-year-old action with the £80,000 Group Two Veuve Clicquot Vintage Stakes (3.25pm) over seven furlongs. This contest, which has fallen to the likes of future Classic winners Shamardal and Sir Percy in the last 10 years, has attracted 11 entries including the Richard Hannon-trained duo of King Torus, successful in the Group Two Superlative Stakes at Newmarket last time out and Major Art, the impressive winner of a Lingfield maiden on July 17. Aidan O’Brien has three to choose from with Emperor Hadrian, fourth behind King Torus at Newmarket last time out, Roscommon maiden winner High Ruler and Zoffany, who finished sixth in the Group Two Coventry Stakes at Royal Ascot before comfortably landing the Listed Golden Fleece Stakes over seven furlongs at Leopardstown on July 1.

Day two of Glorious Goodwood kicks off with the longest race of Glorious Goodwood, the £50,000 sportingbet.com Goodwood Handicap (2.10pm) over two miles and five furlongs which has attracted 34 entries including the David Pipe-trained Junior, winner of the Ascot Handicap at Royal Ascot.


The going at Goodwood remains:

ROUND COURSE: Good to Firm

Seamus Buckley, Goodwood’s Clerk of the Course, said: “We had a welcome eight millimetres of rain this morning, which has eased the pressure on the watering programme.

“We will continue to monitor the situation so that the going remains as described for racing next week. The GoingStick reading on the Straight Course is 8.1, which is indicative of good ground.”


Trainer Jim Goldie is hoping for a lucrative pay day at York on Saturday when he runs the popular grey Nanton in the day’s feature contest, the eight-strong £100,000 Group Two Sky Bet York Stakes (3.05pm) over an extended 10 furlongs, as well as Hawkeyethenoo and Sea Of Leaves in the six-furlong £50,000 Sky Bet Dash (3.40pm).

Nanton (12/1 with Sky Bet) commenced the current campaign with a fine second to Group One winner Jukebox Jury in the Group Two Jockey Club Stakes over a mile and a half at Newmarket on May 1.

The eight-year-old made his name in top handicaps but has raced respectably in Listed and Pattern races this term. His latest outing came in the Group Two Princess Of Wales’s Stakes at Newmarket on July 8, when sixth to Sans Frontier, again over a mile and a half, a run that has prompted Goldie to drop his charge in distance.

He revealed: “Nanton has been running up to his mark and we are dropping him back in trip to see if we can squeeze a bit more out of him. If we go the handicap route, he will have to lump top-weight in most races. He has been collecting money each time he has run and I am hoping we can collect some more. He is in great form, he likes the track and I think the mile and two might suit him.”

A high-class renewal of the Sky Bet York Stakes also includes the John Gosden-trained Debussy (4/1 joint-favourite) a Group Two winner last term who landed the Group Three Huxley Stakes at Chester in May before posting a fine effort to finish a little over four lengths behind Byword in the Group One Prince Of Wales’s Stakes at Royal Ascot.

Michael Bell is set to saddle the talented Monitor Closely (4/1 joint-favourite) for his seasonal debut. The Oasis Dream four-year-old was fifth in the Sky Bet York Stakes 12 months ago before landing the Group Two Great Voltigeur Stakes over 12 furlongs at York in August and then finishing third in the final British Classic, the St Leger at Doncaster.

The David Simcock-trained Bushman (5/1) is poised to attempt a hat-trick after clinching victories in the Group Three Diomed Stakes at Epsom in June and the Listed Royal Windsor Stakes at Windsor the previous month.

The Saeed bin Suroor-trained Balius (7/1) has won Group Two contests in Turkey and Dubai and the high-class seven-year-old is one of two Godolphin-owned runners in the Sky Bet York Stakes. The other is the Mahmood Al Zarooni-trained Allybar (5/1) successful in a Group Three at Meydan, Dubai, in February and subsequently a close third in the Group One Dubai World Cup, both run on Tapeta.

Luca Cumani saddles Group Three winner Summit Surge (9/1) while trainer Richard Fahey relies on the smart Dream Lodge (9/1).

Matt Doyle of Sky Bet said: “Michael Bell is using the Sky Bet as a launch pad for last year’s St Leger third Monitor Closely and it’s a fantastic betting heat with no one horse dominating the market.

“Six of the eight runners are already proven at Group level, having won a total of nine Pattern races between them and it’s a highly competitive renewal with us betting 4/1 the field.”

Sky Bet York Stakes, sponsors bet: 4/1 Debussy, Monitor Closely, 5/1 Allybar, 5/1 Bushman, 7/1 Balius, 9/1 Summit Surge, Dream Lodge, 12/1 Nanton

Each-way terms: 1/5 odds, first three places


Jim Goldie is all set to launch a twin-pronged attack on the lucrative £50,000 Sky Bet Dash (3.40pm) over six furlongs at York on Saturday, July 24, with Hawkeyethenoo (9st) and Sea Of Leaves (9st 1lb).

Hawkeyethenoo, well-supported at 8/1 with sponsor Sky Bet, landed a six-furlong handicap at Newmarket in May and was subsequently runner-up in the “Dash” at Epsom before clinching third in the Scurry Stakes at the Curragh, both in June.

The talented Hawk Wing gelding suffered a rare blip when down the field in the John Smith’s Scottish Stewards’ Cup at Hamilton on July 16, but Goldie is hopeful of a return to form for the four-year-old, who is drawn 18 of the 20 runners.

Goldie revealed today: “Hawkeyethenoo got upset in the stalls and tweaked his back a wee bit at Hamilton. The draw would have probably undone him anyway, but it wasn’t the draw that beat him.

“He was in grand form before that and it was his first hiccup, so to speak, and hopefully he can bounce back from that. You can’t go to the well at home and at the races, so we have given him a quiet week. He is eating well and hopefully he can come back on the day.”

Sea Of Leaves has some smart form in the book and the trainer, who is based just outside Glasgow, is expecting a bold show from the filly, who is currently available at 25/1 with Sky Bet after being allotted stall 16.

Goldie’s charge enjoyed no luck last time when unseating her rider at Musselburgh on June 5, but previously ran well to take fourth in the Listed Cecil Frail Stakes at Haydock in May.

He continued: “Sea Of Leaves just clipped heels at Musselburgh and lost the jockey. She then went for a gallop on her own and managed to bang her leg. She is fine and in good form now though. She is quite talented and I think she will run well. She could be a danger all right.

“Sea Of Leaves has bits of very good form - she is Listed fourth - she is tapping at the door and it would not be a big surprise if she was involved in the finish.”

Sky Bet makes the Barry Hills-trained Sunraider (9st) its 6/1 favourite following the three-year-old’s eye-catching victory in a six-furlong handicap at Haydock on June 9, his most recent start.

The Dandy Nicholls-trained course and distance winner Valery Borzov is also available at 8/1 having dropped to a mark of 94 from a high of 105, while the Mark Johnston-trained Lowdown, victorious in the John Smith’s Scottish Stewards’ Cup and now in search of a hat-trick, is another available at 8/1.

Others to note in a highly-competitive renewal include the Kevin Ryan-trained Parisian Pyramid (9st 5lb), course and distance winner Ingleby Lady (9st 6lb) from the David Barron stable and the Eric Alston-trained Novellen Lad (9st 2lb).

Sky Bet Dash, sponsors bet:
6/1 Sunraider, 8/1 Lowdown, 8/1 Hawkeyethenoo, 8/1 Valery Borzov, 12/1 Novellen Lad, 12/1 Ingleby Lady, 12/1 Parisian Pyramid, 14/1 Iver Bridge Lad, 14/1 Kaldoun Kingdom, 16/1 Tajneed, 16/1 Hitchens, 16/1 Tiddliwinks, 16/1 Damika, 20/1 Baldemar, 22/1 Damien, 25/1 Tombi, 25/1 Singeur, 25/1 Sea Of Leaves, 25/1 Sonny Red, 40/1 Star Rover

Each-way terms: 1/4 odds, first four places


The ground at York is currently good,


The £160,000 Group Two Park Stakes takes place over seven furlongs at the Ladbrokes St Leger Festival at Doncaster on Saturday, September 11, and has attracted a fantastic entry of 53, including the Alain de Royer-Dupre-trained pair of Varenar and Dalghar from France. With no penalties applicable, the Park Stakes is run with Group One conditions.

Varenar, who along with Dalghar is owned by the Aga Khan, defeated the great Goldikova to land the Group One Prix de la Foret over the distance at Longchamp in October and was a close sixth in the six-furlong Darley July Cup at Newmarket last time.

The Chantilly-based trainer revealed today: “We are looking at the Park Stakes as a possibility for Varenar and Dalghar. They both like the seven-furlong distance.

“Varenar ran very well in the Darley July Cup but the jockey gave him a bad ride. He was inside and then went outside - we don’t know why. If he had stayed on the good pace, he could have been fourth.”

Dalghar, a handsome grey Anabaa half-brother to the champions Dalakhani and Daylami, won the seven-furlong Group Three Prix du Palais-Royal at Longchamp on June 5. The lightly-raced four-year-old then contested the Group One Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot and faded in the closing stages to finish fifth behind Goldikova.

De Royer-Dupre continued: “Dalghar ran well in the Queen Anne Stakes at Ascot but the mile was too long for him. Next, he will run at Goodwood in the Group Two Betfair Cup over seven furlongs. Afterwards we will look at Doncaster and decide whether we go with Dalghar or Varenar.

“If the ground is soft, it is not a problem for Varenar, he can go on all ground. For Dalghar, I prefer firmer going. Dalghar has a very nice pedigree and is a good looking horse. He has not had many races, he is fresh and we hope for improvement.”

The race is also on the agenda for Australian-trained Group One winner Alverta, who is stationed at Abington Place in Newmarket and has the Group One Prix Maurice de Gheest at Deauville as her next target before a planned tilt at the Park Stakes, followed by the Group One Prix de la Foret at Longchamp.

Trained by Paul Messara, the seven-year-old mare landed the Group One Coolmore Classic over an extended seven furlongs in March before travelling to England for the Golden Jubilee Stakes at Royal Ascot in June, in which she failed to fire. Alverta posted a career best effort on her latest start however, when a length third to Starspangledbanner in the Group One Darley July Cup.

Also among a host of top notch entries is the Henry Cecil-trained Lord Shanakill, who captured the Group One Prix Jean Prat last term and saw off Dunelight to win a Listed contest at Chester on July 10, while the Sir Michael Stoute-trained Main Aim has won the past two renewals of the Group Three Timeform Jury Stakes at Haydock.

Richard Hannon’s triple Group One-winning miler Paco Boy, beaten only a neck by Goldikova in the Group One Queen Anne Stakes last time, has been engaged, while Chris Wall may run Group Two totesport.com Summer Mile hero Premio Loco.

Also entered are three of last season’s leading juvenile colts, Arcano, Beethoven and Awzaan.

The Brian Meehan-trained Group One Prix Morny winner Arcano was last seen finishing third behind Dick Turpin and Canford Cliffs in the Group Three Greenham Stakes at Newbury in April.

Beethoven landed the Group One Dewhurst Stakes over seven furlongs at Newmarket in October for trainer Aidan O’Brien, who has also engaged recent Group Three Minstrel Stakes winner Air Chief Marshal and Emperor Claudius, unbeaten in three starts this season.

The Mark Johnston-trained Awzaan won the Group One Middle Park Stakes in an unbeaten two-year-old campaign before disappointing on his only start this term in the 2,000 Guineas at Newmarket in May.

Johnston has also entered, among others, Group Three Jersey Stakes heroine Rainfall, who was a fine third to Music Show in the Group One Etihad Airways Falmouth Stakes at Newmarket’s July Festival, as well as St Moritz, who saw off Palace Moon to win the Bunbury Cup at the same meeting.

The Jeremy Noseda-trained Arabian Gleam was denied a hat-trick of Park Stakes wins last year when third behind the Eddie Lynam-trained Duff, who held the Brian Meehan-trained Cat Junior by a neck. Arabian Gleam went on to win the Group Two Challenge Stakes at Newmarket in October.

Meehan could also saddle last season’s Group Two Lowther Stakes heroine Lady Of The Desert, while Serious Attitude, winner of the Group One Cheveley Park Stakes in 2008, has been entered by trainer Rae Guest.

Godolphin could be represented by any of eight entries, all from the Saeed bin Suroor stable, including Delegator, runner-up to Sea The Stars in the 2009 renewal of the 2,000 Guineas and last year’s Group Two Champagne Stakes winner Poet’s Voice.


Sir Michael Stoute has included the unraced juvenile Deny among the 82 entries for the £100,000 Group Two Champagne Stakes at Doncaster’s Ladbrokes St Leger Festival on Saturday, September 11.

The seven-furlong contest is one of the highlights of the season for two-year-olds with its roll of honour including subsequent champions such as Grundy (1974), Warning (1987), Rodrigo De Triano (1991) and Noverre (2000).

Owned by Highclere Thoroughbred Racing’s Matilda syndicate, Deny is a 150,000 guineas yearling purchase out of Sulk, winner of the Group One Prix Marcel Boussac as a two-year-old in 2001.

The Mr Greeley colt is one of five Champagne Stakes entries for Stoute, who won the prestigious contest in 1979 with Final Straw, the others being the unraced quartet of Labarinto, Raahin, Star Of Dance and Epsom Derby entry The Mongoose.

Harry Herbert, managing director of Highclere Thoroughbred Racing, revealed today: “Deny is only just now moving into fast work so we will have to see how he gets on but they like him at Sir Michael’s and you can see why. He is the horse you pick out in the string and say, ‘oh, what’s that’, and likewise going up the gallops.

“It’s early days but, fingers crossed, he could be a nice horse and that is Sir Michael’s entry so we will take it as a positive sign at this stage.

“He was a most beautiful yearling and is a magnificent stamp of horse. He is beautifully bred by Mr Greeley out of a two-year-old champion filly, Sulk. He is a physical specimen, very imposing and a fabulous mover. He is one of those horses that glides over the ground, you don’t hear him when he comes past, he is really light on his feet.”

Trainer Richard Hannon has a classy bunch of two-year-olds this season and has engaged a trio of Newmarket July Festival winners. King Torus landed the Group Two 32Red.com Superlative Stakes at Newmarket on July 9, Libranno won the Group Two TNT July Stakes on July 8, and Casual Glimpse took a six-furlong conditions race the same day.

The Michael Jarvis-trained Elzaam was collared in the final stride when second to Strong Suit in the Group Two Coventry Stakes and was third to Libranno at Newmarket, while the Jeremy Noseda-trained Formosina defeated Samuel Morse when taking the Group Two Ladbrokes.com Railway Stakes at the Curragh in June but was sixth of six to King Torus at Newmarket last time.

The Clive Brittain-trained Zaidan is unbeaten in two starts and impressively landed the Listed Chesham Stakes at Royal Ascot by three lengths.

Memen gave trainer Paul Cole a nursery success at Newmarket’s July Festival, while the same meeting saw the Ed Dunlop-trained Native Khan make an impressive winning debut.

Aidan O’Brien’s Ballydoyle entry is 18-strong with Samuel Morse joined in the list by, among others, Listed winner Zoffany, Listed Windsor Castle Stakes runner-up Petronius Maximus and promising Curragh maiden winner Roderic O’Connor.

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