Wednesday, June 22, 2011
SOUTH AFRICAN RAIDER RIVER JETEZ A POSSIBLE FOR ETIHAD AIRWAYS FALMOUTH STAKES
30 REMAIN IN DARLEY JULY CUP
Fillies and mares take centre stage on day two of Newmarket’s Piper Heidsieck July Festival, Friday, 8th July, Abu Dhabi Day, when the highlight is the £160,000 Etihad Airways Falmouth Stakes over a mile.
A possible international raider in this year’s renewal is River Jetez, trained by South African Mike de Kock and currently based at Abington Place stables in Newmarket.
The globe-trotting mare has shown high-class form in 2011, finishing runner-up in Group One contests in Dubai and Singapore.
Steve Jell, de Kock’s assistant trainer in Newmarket, commented: “We will see how River Jetez goes over the next couple of weeks before committing her to Newmarket.
“We want to possibly take her to Chicago for the Beverly D Stakes or Arlington Million in August and we want to give her a run before she goes out there, so the race is a possibility for her.
“She got beaten by a better horse on the day in Singapore and she improved a lot on her previous start in Hong Kong. She has done a fair bit of travelling already this year but she can handle it ‒ once she settles into a place, she is fine.
“I believe the stiff mile at Newmarket would suit her as she gets 2,000 metres but it would be a no pressure run and we just want to see how she goes ‒ we want her to go out there and enjoy herself.
“We wouldn’t know all about the local fillies and mares around but River Jetez has a bit of class about her.”
De Kock went close to glory in the Falmouth Stakes in 2007, when Irridescence was the length runner-up to Simply Perfect.
Also among the 36 entries for this year’s Etihad Airways Falmouth Stakes are the 2010 winner Music Show, Irish 1,000 Guineas heroine Misty For Me and French raider Sahpresa, who is no stranger to Newmarket having taken the last two renewals of the Group One Kingdom Of Bahrain Sun Chariot Stakes on the Rowley Mile.
30 REMAIN IN DARLEY JULY CUP
Newmarket’s Piper Heidsieck July Festival is now just over a fortnight away and the countdown steps up a gear today with the publication of the latest entries going forward for the highlight of the three-day meeting, the Darley July Cup, which takes place over six furlongs on Saturday, 9th July.
The Group One event, which is being run on a Saturday for the first time in 2011, boasts a prize fund of £400,000 and forms the fourth leg in the Sprint division of the QIPCO British Champions Series. It is also the third British leg of the Global Sprint Challenge.
At Royal Ascot on 18th June, Society Rock stamped himself as a sprinter of the highest class when taking the Group One Golden Jubilee Stakes by half a length from Monsieur Chevalier. The duo could re-oppose at Newmarket on 9th July along with the third, fourth, fifth and sixth from the Royal Ascot contest ‒ Australian raider Star Witness, Elzaam, Bated Breath and Amico Fritz.
Starspangledbanner handed a third Darley July Cup victory to trainer Aidan O’Brien in 2010 and this year the master of Ballydoyle has two to choose from ‒ Zoffany, who beat all bar the mighty Frankel in the St James’s Palace Stakes over a mile at Royal Ascot, and Oracle. There are a further three Irish-trained contenders, notably last season’s Group One Nunthorpe Stakes winner Sole Power, who also landed the Group Two Temple Stakes at Haydock Park last month.
Other Group One winners who could contest this year's Darley July Cup include Markab, successful in the Group One Haydock Sprint Cup last September and the Sir Michael Stoute-trained Kingsgate Native, winner of the Nunthorpe Stakes in 2007 and the Golden Jubilee Stakes in 2008. Regal Parade has been a Group One winner in each of the past two seasons for Dandy Nicholls, having taken the Haydock Sprint Cup in 2009 and last season’s Prix Maurice de Gheest at Deauville.
Other interesting contenders going forward include the mare Laddies Poker Two, not seen out since taking the Wokingham Handicap at Royal Ascot in 2010, Dream Ahead, last year’s joint-champion two-year-old who finished fifth behind Frankel and Zoffany at Royal Ascot on his seasonal reappearance, and Godolphin’s Delegator, runner-up to the mighty Sea The Stars in the 2009 2000 Guineas and victorious in the six-furlong Group Two Duke Of York Stakes at York in May on his first start over that distance.
The 2011 Piper Heidsieck July Festival kicks off with Grand Arcade Ladies Day on Thursday, 7th July, a highlight of the East Anglian social calendar, when the feature race is the £80,000 Group Two Princess Of Wales's sportingbet.com Stakes over a mile and a half.
For further information and to book tickets, please visit www.newmarketracecourses.co.uk
ROYAL ASCOT HEROES LEAD RACE TOWARDS CARTIER AWARDS 2011
Cartier Racing Awards are bestowed upon European horseracing’s elite performers and the five days of Royal Ascot last week provided the consummate setting for a whole array of such luminaries to stake claims for the coveted end of season honours.
Among the plentiful highlights, Frankel retained his unbeaten record with a cardiac arresting triumph; Canford Cliffs enhanced his standing with victory over the great Goldikova; Rewilding overcame the Australian legend So You Think; and Fame And Glory took a confident step into the breach left by the supreme Yeats.
Established in 1991 to reward excellence in horseracing, the Cartier Awards are determined by points earned by horses in Pattern races throughout 2011, combined at the end of season with the opinions of a panel of racing journalists and votes from readers of the Racing Post and The Daily Telegraph.
In addition to the eight equine awards, the Cartier/Daily Telegraph Award of Merit goes to the person or persons who, in the opinion of the special 18-strong Cartier Jury, has/have done the most for European racing and/or breeding either over their lifetime or within the past 12 months.
European horseracing’s equivalent of the Oscars will be presented on the evening of Tuesday, November 15, during a glittering ceremony before an invited audience at London’s Dorchester Hotel.
After his astounding QIPCO 2,000 Guineas triumph on April 30, Frankel was expected to win the Group One St James’s Palace Stakes on Royal Ascot’s opening day, Tuesday, June 14. On that front, Sir Henry Cecil’s charge duly delivered, but supporters of the Khalid Abdulla-owned homebred had to sweat through the final furlong of the mile contest.
Having opened up a wide lead over his rivals with more than three furlongs to race, the Galileo colt’s raking stride began to shorten markedly inside the distance. Simultaneously, the rapidly advancing form of Zoffany bore down upon the 30/100 favourite. However, Frankel arrived at the winning post three quarters of a length ahead of the Aidan O’Brien-trained runner-up.
Frankel increased his Cartier Racing Awards points haul to 104, placing him at the head of both the Cartier Three-Year-Old Colt division and the Cartier Horse Of The Year category.
Stalking Frankel in the Cartier Three-Year-Old category is the Andre Fabre-trained Pour Moi, brilliant winner of the Investec Derby at Epsom, who has 66 points.
Frankel could face off in the QIPCO Sussex Stakes at Glorious Goodwood on Wednesday, July 27, against crack four-year-old miler Canford Cliffs, who unleashed a brilliant turn of foot in the final furlong of the Group One Queen Anne Stakes, also on Royal Ascot’s fabulous opening day, to defeat Goldikova, the 2010 Cartier Horse Of The Year, by a length.
Canford Cliffs, trained by Richard Hannon, now has 64 points and lies second in the Cartier Older Horse category, while Goldikova, who won the division in 2009 and 2010, is on 48.
Godolphin’s Rewilding tops the Cartier Older Horse standings with 72 points following a thrilling neck victory over the O’Brien-trained So You Think (52 points) in the Group One Prince Of Wales’s Stakes over 10 furlongs on Wednesday, June 15.
Ryan Moore sent the imposing former Australian superstar So You Think for home with over a quarter of a mile remaining and the meeting’s leading rider looked to have landed the spoils aboard the 4/11 favourite but Frankie Dettori timed his challenge to perfection aboard Dubai Sheema Classic hero Rewilding who gamely gained the upper hand for a neck success.
Yeats was named Cartier Champion Stayer in 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009 on the back of his four Gold Cup triumphs at Royal Ascot and another Ballydoyle star, Fame And Glory, is on a good footing to emulate the great horse after landing the spoils in the two and a half mile Group One showpiece on Thursday, June 16.
Successful at the highest level previously in the 2009 Dubai Duty Free Irish Derby and 2010 Investec Coronation Cup, Fame And Glory has 48 points this year and sits at the top of the Cartier Stayer division after posting a commanding three-length win from Godolphin’s Opinion Poll (27), with the Fabre-trained Brigantin (29) third.
The Robert Collet-trained Immortal Verse (64) stormed up the Cartier Three-Year-Old Filly points standings with a breathtaking last-to-first victory in the Group One Coronation Stakes on Friday, June 17. That win sees the Pivotal filly rise to second place, behind the Fabre-trained dual French Classic winner Golden Lilac (72), who added to her Poule d’Essai des Pouliches triumph with an impressive victory in the Group One Prix de Diane - Longines at Chantilly on June 12.
QIPCO 1,000 Guineas winner Blue Bunting (54) is third in the category, while Investec Oaks heroine Dancing Rain has 48 points, the equal of Irish 1,000 Guineas winner Misty For Me and Together.
The Cartier Sprinter division sprang to life at the Royal Meeting with the Robert Cowell-trained Prohibit (45) clinching the five-furlong Group One King’s Stand Stakes and the James Fanshawe-trained Society Rock (48) scoring in the Group One Golden Jubilee Stakes over six furlongs from Monsieur Chevalier (24). Australian raider Star Witness (24) was runner-up in the former race and third in the latter.
With Frankel (104) at the top of the Cartier Horse Of The Year standings, followed by Golden Lilac (72), Rewilding (72), Pour Moi (66), Canford Cliffs (64) and Immortal Verse (64), the 2011 season is shaping up to be a thriller and then there is last year’s Cartier Three-Year-Old Colt winner, Investec Derby and Qatar Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe hero, Workforce, who has yet to step out in Group One company this season after a winning reappearance.
The latest betting from Ladbrokes on the Cartier Horse Of The Year is 5/2 Frankel (from 9/4) & Canford Cliffs (from 10/1), 5/1 So You Think (from 9/4) & Pour Moi, 7/1 Workforce (from 10/1), 8/1 Goldikova (from 5/1).
Harry Herbert, Cartier’s racing consultant, commented today: “Royal Ascot served up a treat for its tercentenary celebration with excellence in abundance thanks to outstanding performances from some of the sport’s star names.
“The victories of Frankel and Canford Cliffs bring closer the fascinating prospect of a clash between those two brilliant milers, while a rematch between So You Think and Rewilding is a race that everyone would want to see.
“This has been flagged as a potential vintage year and when you throw Workforce, Goldikova, Pour Moi, Fame And Glory and Golden Lilac into the mix, to name just some of the wonderful talent illuminating European racing in 2011, one can understand why.”
CARTIER AWARDS 2011 LATEST POINTS STANDINGS
(up to and including June 18, 2011)
CARTIER HORSE OF THE YEAR
GOLDEN LILAC 72
POUR MOI 66
CANFORD CLIFFS 64
IMMORTAL VERSE 64
CARTIER THREE-YEAR-OLD COLT
POUR MOI 66
DUBAWI GOLD 48
RELIABLE MAN 48
RODERIC O’CONNOR 48
CARTIER THREE-YEAR-OLD FILLY
GOLDEN LILAC 72
IMMORTAL VERSE 64
BLUE BUNTING 54
DANCING RAIN 48
MISTY FOR ME 48
CARTIER OLDER HORSE
CANFORD CLIFFS 64
SO YOU THINK 52
FAME AND GLORY 48
SOCIETY ROCK 48
SOCIETY ROCK 48
STAR WITNESS 28
MONSIEUR CHEVALIER 24
SOLE POWER 18
FAME AND GLORY 48
OPINION POLL 27
BLUE BAJAN 24
O’BRIEN AND MOORE ODDS-ON FOR QIPCO BRITISH CHAMPIONS SERIES JOCKEY AND TRAINER TITLES
Aidan O’Brien may have only netted one victory in the seven QIPCO British Champions Series races at Royal Ascot last week – Fame And Glory in the Gold Cup – while Ryan Moore had to settle for two seconds and a third place, but both have shortened up in Ladbrokes’ market for the Trainer and Jockey of the Series.
O’Brien is 1-2 favourite to claim the inaugural award after the 35th and final race has been run on QIPCO British Champions Day at Ascot on Saturday 15 October. Moore is 4-6 to lift the top jockey trophy.
Before the start of the Series, O’Brien was a 3-1 shot with Ladbrokes behind the then 7-4 favourite, Sir Henry Cecil, while Moore was the Evens favourite for the jockeys’ title.
Judged on winners, with second and third places (and lower if necessary) taken into account in the event of a tie, O’Brien leads the trainers’ table on the strength of his five second places. He, Richard Hannon, Sir Henry Cecil and Mahmood Al Zarooni have each had two winners so far.
Moore only lies in fourth place in the jockeys’ table with one victory courtesy of St Nicholas Abbey in the Investec Coronation Cup, but his three second places would take him to the top of the table should he win the next Series race, the Coral-Eclipse at Sandown Park on Saturday week, on Workforce.
That would be enough for him to leapfrog the three jockeys above him on two winners apiece, Richard Hughes – who leads the table on the strength of a second and a third place – Tom Queally and Frankie Dettori.
With Midday looking sure to figure prominently in races like the Nassau Stakes and Darley Yorkshire Oaks, contests that she won last year, and Frankel looking to extend his unbeaten run in the QIPCO Sussex Stakes next month, Sir Henry Cecil and Tom Queally look likely to push O’Brien and Moore hard as the Series progresses.
Ladbrokes prices for Trainer of the Series:
1/2 Aidan O’Brien
4/1 Sir Henry Cecil
8/1 Richard Hannon
12/1 Sir Michael Stoute
16/1 John Gosden
20/1 Mahmood Al Zarooni
Ladbrokes prices for Jockey of the Series:
4/6 Ryan Moore
7/2 Tom Queally
5/1 Richard Hughes
8/1 Frankie Dettori
25/1 William Buick
TRAINER OF THE SERIES (AFTER 15 RACES)
JOCKEY OF THE SERIES (AFTER 15 RACES)
Both championships are decided on the number of winners ridden/trained across the 35 race series. In the event of a tie, the number of seconds and thirds (and, if necessary, lower placings) will be taken into account. The winners will be presented with a specially commissioned trophy on QIPCO British Champions Day at Ascot on Saturday 15 October and their nominated charity will receive a cheque for £25,000.