Friday 21 September 2018

Idaho set for Leger

Idaho, ridden by Seamie Heffernan, wins the Betway Great Voltigeur Stakes York. Pic: Anna Gowthorpe/PA
Idaho, ridden by Seamie Heffernan, wins the Betway Great Voltigeur Stakes York. Pic: Anna Gowthorpe/PA

After being placed behind Harzand in the Epsom Derby and again at the Curragh in the Irish equivalent, Aidan O'Brien's Idaho was back in the winner's enclosure yesterday at York and is now a short-priced favourite for the English St Leger.

Sent off the odds-on favourite for the Group Two Great Voltigeur Stakes on the opening day of the Ebor meeting, Idaho certainly showed his credentials for a race like the St Leger at Doncaster as he finished strongly in the final furlong to reel in stable companion Housesofparliament and Idaho was going away at the line as he passed the judge a length and three parts in front.

Bookmakers were quick off the mark to cut Idaho for the final Classic of the British season with Betfair and Paddy Power the last to stand 2/1 about the son of Galileo with BoyleSports being forced to cut him to 15/8 after initially going 5/2 following yesterday's win.

Aidan O'Brien confirmed that the St Leger is very much the plan for Idaho and suggested that Housesofparliament is also likely to take in the Doncaster race.

"Idaho had a nice break after the Irish Derby and he was ready for a comeback run," said O'Brien.

"Seamus had one eye on the Leger and we just wanted to get him relaxed. Jamie (Spencer) went a nice sensible pace in front and his horse ran a blinder. Seamus gave his horse a lovely ride and came through at the end.

"Idaho might go up to a mile and six (furlongs), but I'm not sure he'll go much further than that. We had our eye on the Leger and this race came at a lovely time. Obviously Housesofparliament stays very well and he would be happy in the Leger. It seems the logical race for both of them."

There was no joy for O'Brien in the feature Juddmonte International as Postponed defied fears over the form of his trainer Roger Varian to win his sixth consecutive race and his fourth at Group One level as he held of Highland Reel.


At York tomorrow Sole Power will line up in the Nunthorpe Stakes for trainer Eddie Lynam with Washington DC representing Aidan O'Brien, while earlier on the card Willie Mullins will find out whether or not he has a Emirates Melbourne Cup contender in Wicklow Brave as the seven-year-old takes on Trip To Paris and Pallasator in the Group Two Lonsdale Cup.

Moonmeister in the opening Sky Bet First Race Special Stakes and Markhan and Spruce Meadows in the Nationwide Accident Repair Service Stakes provide the other Irish interest at York tomorrow.

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