Monday 11 December 2017

Big ask for Gleneagles to do a job in Classic

Golden Horn
Golden Horn

Between both the Breeders' Cup over the weekend and the Melbourne Cup on Tuesday, there's a lot of races being run over the coming days that I am fortunate enough to have very fond memories of.

There's a lot of European interest in both America and Australia and hopefully we will witness Irish winners.

There's some fascinating clashes at the Breeders' Cup. First of all tonight we will get to rate our juveniles as we will see how the likes of Shogun, Hit It A Bomb and Alice Springs get on. I think the Irish juveniles look to be a good bunch this year so hopefully there'll be a winner amongst them.

Tomorrow night, though, the Breeders' Cup Classic has the hallmarks of being a classic in every sense of the word. American Pharaoh is obviously the horse getting all of the attention but it should be a brilliant race between him and Beholder.

With mare Beholder now withdrawn due to health concerns, American Pharaoh looks set to add the Classic on top of his Triple Crown. It would be great to see American Pharoah win as he has been a bright spark for American racing this year and you'd love to see him finish on a high.

I think it is going to prove very difficult for Gleneagles to make his mark on what is an alien surface to him in such a hotly contested renewal.

Golden Horn and Found provide another thrilling contest in the Turf, especially now that there is an ease in the ground and it should bring Found right into the mix.

We saw Golden Horn get beaten earlier in the season on softer ground and Found ran a brilliant race from off the pace in the Champion Stakes at Ascot and she is not to be taken lightly. Many an Arc winner has hit a bump at the end of the road in the Breeders' Cup, but I do think that Golden Horn will be able to just see it out and sign off with a final win.

It would also be nice to see Legatissimo end the season with a win for David Wachman. Her best form is on nice ground but she has won with an ease in it before and she has been a fantastic filly for connections this season and it's fantastic that we look likely to see her racing again next year as well.


On form, she looks to have enough in hand to see off Miss France and while Secret Gesture will relish every drop of rain they are getting in Keeneland, her European form isn't good enough to suggest she can turn over Legatissimo.

Make Believe and Esoterique look the two most likely to battle out the Breeders' Cup Mile, although Ryan Moore might want have something to say about that but again it looks a real intriguing race.

Jockey Olivier Peslier has a great record in this race and I think if he was able to get loose from the front with Make Believe, they could be very dangerous. All in all, the action at Keeneland promises to be highly entertaining.

As it does in the early hours of Tuesday morning when the Melbourne Cup takes centre stage.

A big bearing on this race will come tomorrow when they make the draw. If you are drawn wide, you have plenty to do around Flemington.

Ed Dunlop's horse Trip To Paris stood out for me. He ran a cracking race in the Caulfield Cup for a stayer who we know will improve for going further so he'd be my pick for the race.

Finally, I was at the launch of the Curragh redevelopment on Wednesday and it's great to see it get to that stage.

Hopefully, there will be no delays with planning or anything like that and we can be brought up to date in terms of facilities at our major racecourse.

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