herald

Wednesday 22 August 2018

No hat-trick for So You Think in Oz

Aidan O'Brien's Irish Champion Stakes winner So You Think will not bid for a third consecutive victory in the Cox Plate at Moonee Valley in Australia as he did not appear among the entries yesterday.

Connections all but ruled out the race after the horse's impressive win on Saturday evening, but still left that door slightly ajar until yesterday when his name was absent.

The eight-time Group One winner will now bid to bring that tally to nine or even into double figures by heading to Paris for the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe or else heading to Ascot for Champions Day, also next month, before a possible Breeders Cup raid.

A mouth-watering clash with Frankel (pictured) could be on the agenda if So You Think is sent back in trip to race over a mile in the QEII Stakes at Ascot, otherwise it could be the English Champion Stakes instead over 1m2f at the same meeting. Of the three, and providing it's not soft ground, So You Think's most likely next engagement is the Arc, though, as he bids to be crowned champion of Europe having been such a star in the southern hemisphere when trained by Bart Cummings.

The Longchamp feature would mean a step up to 1m4f, and that appears to be the big decision for connections.

Meanwhile, ahead of the English St Leger at Doncaster on Saturday, Ladbrokes' David Williams is reporting that the 'Fallon Factor' is becoming popular among punters.

Kieren Fallon has been booked to ride the Michael Owen-owned and Tom Dascombe-trained Brown Panther in the final Classic of the season as he surprisingly replaces regular jockey Richard Kingscote.

Yesterday evening Ladbrokes still went 10/1 about Brown Panther but Williams admitted: "His price looks highly likely to shorten between now and the big race. It hasn't taken long for Fallon fans to latch onto his booking."

One that proved popular in the same market with William Hill was Aidan O'Brien's Seville who was nipped from 10/1 into 9/1, while Paddy Power has the horse now 8/1 from 10/1.

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