Kalanisi's late burst can topple the Giant

Courage of the "Iron Horse'' will be tested by old rival as he attempts to add York's International Stakes to his Group One haul

For something which bills itself as the Ebor meeting, the first of three days of immensely valuable racing at York today appears suspiciously close to lacking a quorum. A total of 21 horses will go to post for the first four races on the card, which in terms of the added prize money works out a little under £32,000 each. With the going now predicted as being good, the management at York surely deserved rather better.

For something which bills itself as the Ebor meeting, the first of three days of immensely valuable racing at York today appears suspiciously close to lacking a quorum. A total of 21 horses will go to post for the first four races on the card, which in terms of the added prize money works out a little under £32,000 each. With the going now predicted as being good, the management at York surely deserved rather better.

One man who will definitely not be calling for a head count, however, is Aidan O'Brien, who stands a fair chance of running up a treble in the first three races. Even Shoal Creek, who runs as a pacemaker for Giant's Causeway in the International Stakes, is guaranteed a minimum of £6,750 merely if he manages to cross the line before the judge has left his box.

The prize O'Brien is really interested in, though, is the £259,000 for the winner of the International, for which Giant's Causeway seems sure to start favourite. Three successive wins in Group One company, preceded by two seconds in the same grade in the 2,000 Guineas in Britain and Ireland, will see to that, and such is the aura which now surrounds the "Iron Horse'' that many punters will entrust the success or failure of their entire week to his sturdy shoulders.

And Mick Kinane's mount may well reward their faith once again, for this latest renewal of the International looks to be one of the poorest for years. Almushtarak is fully exposed as below Group One level - although Kamal Mahdi's seven-year-old will never find a better opportunity to win one - and so too, even on their best form, are Lear Spear and Barathea Guest.

Assuming that Shoal Creek has not improved by three stone since his last outing, this leaves Kalanisi as the only credible alternative to the favourite.

He is, however, a very credible alternative indeed, one whom supporters of the favourite will dismiss at their peril. Just a head separated them at the end of a gruelling drive up the Sandown hill in the Eclipse Stakes last month, and there is no reason to think that there will be any more in it this afternoon. Indeed, with only six starts (Giant's Causeway has nine) behind him to date, and despite being a year older than his main rival, Kalanisi may well have more scope for improvement than Giant's Causeway. At the likely prices, Kalanisi (3.10) is definitely the one to back today.

It may be worth waiting until shortly before the off to do so, however, since O'Brien has notably strong chances in the first two races. If his many followers have trebles running on to Giant's Causeway, the three-year-old will surely go off at an artificially short price, which can only be good news for supporters of Kalanisi.

O'Brien's runner in the first is Hemingway - having exhausted most of the classical composers, Michael Tabor and Sue Magnier are now apparently moving on to the major figures of 20th century literature - who is reputedly among the best of the latest crop of Ballydoyle juveniles. He has raced just once to date, in a maiden at Galway, and duly came home seven lengths clear of some very ordinary rivals. O'Brien used the same race last year, however, to introduce the subsequent Group One winner Aristotle, and while Saratov and Eminence will be far more of a test today, Hemingway (2.05) should maintain his unbeaten record.

Rostropovich, who runs in the Lonsdale Stakes, is another horse of considerable potential, particularly now that he is being stepped up in trip. He may not be quite good enough to handle Rainbow High (next best 2.35), however, who should have improved since the Goodwood Cup, in which he finished behind another of today's rivals, Royal Rebel. In the Great Voltigeur Stakes, meanwhile, DALAMPOUR (nap 3.45) is a solid bet to follow up his success in the Queen's Vase at Royal Ascot, and Warning Reef (4.15) has a solid each-way chance in the day's big handicap.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Jamie and Emily Pharro discovering their friend's prank
video
News
i100
News
Tim Vine has won the funniest joke award at the Edinburgh Festival 2014
peopleTim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award, has nigh-on 200 in his act. So how are they conceived?
News
people
Life and Style
techApp to start sending headlines, TV clips and ads to your phone
Arts and Entertainment
Taylor Swift crawls through the legs of twerking dancers in her 'Shake It Off' music video
musicEarl Sweatshirt thinks so
Life and Style
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Daniel Radcliffe and Zoe Kazan in What If
filmReview: Actor swaps Harry Potter for Cary Grant in What If
News
Our resilience to stress is to a large extent determined by our genes
science
Travel
travel
Sport
sportBesiktas 0 Arsenal 0: Champions League qualifying first-leg match ends in stalemate in Istanbul
News
Pornography is more accessible - and harder to avoid - than ever
news... but they still admit watching it
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Project Manager (App development, SAP, interfacing)

£50000 - £60000 Per Annum + excellent company benefits: Clearwater People Solu...

Systems Developer Technical Lead

£65000 - £70000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client based i...

Energy Engineer

£25000 - £30000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: Job Title: Energy En...

Techincal Accountant-Insurance-Bank-£550/day

£475 - £550 per day + competitive: Orgtel: Senior Technical Accountant-Insuran...

Day In a Page

Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

A descent into madness in America's heartlands

David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home
Lauded therapist Harley Mille still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Lauded therapist still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Australian Harley Miller is as frustrated by court delays as she is with the idiosyncrasies of immigration law
Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world. But could his predictions of war do the same?

Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world...

But could his predictions of war do the same?
Kate Bush asks fans not to take photos at her London gigs: 'I want to have contact with the audience, not iPhones'

'I want to have contact with the audience, not iPhones'

Kate Bush asks fans not to take photos at her London gigs
Under-35s have rated gardening in their top five favourite leisure activities, but why?

Young at hort

Under-35s have rated gardening in their top five favourite leisure activities. But why are so many people are swapping sweaty clubs for leafy shrubs?
Tim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award: 'making a quip as funny as possible is an art'

Beyond a joke

Tim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award, has nigh-on 200 in his act. So how are they conceived?
The late Peter O'Toole shines in 'Katherine of Alexandria' despite illness

The late Peter O'Toole shines in 'Katherine of Alexandria' despite illness

Sadly though, the Lawrence of Arabia star is not around to lend his own critique
Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire: The joy of camping in a wetland nature reserve and sleeping under the stars

A wild night out

Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire offers a rare chance to camp in a wetland nature reserve
Comic Sans for Cancer exhibition: It’s the font that’s openly ridiculed for its jaunty style, but figures of fun have their fans

Comic Sans for Cancer exhibition

It’s the font that’s openly ridiculed for its jaunty style, but figures of fun have their fans
Besiktas vs Arsenal: Five things we learnt from the Champions League first-leg tie

Besiktas vs Arsenal

Five things we learnt from the Champions League first-leg tie
Rory McIlroy a smash hit on the US talk show circuit

Rory McIlroy a smash hit on the US talk show circuit

As the Northern Irishman prepares for the Barclays, he finds time to appear on TV in the States, where he’s now such a global superstar that he needs no introduction
Boy racer Max Verstappen stays relaxed over step up to Formula One

Boy racer Max Verstappen stays relaxed over step up to F1

The 16-year-old will become the sport’s youngest-ever driver when he makes his debut for Toro Rosso next season
Fear brings the enemies of Isis together at last

Fear brings the enemies of Isis together at last

But belated attempts to unite will be to no avail if the Sunni caliphate remains strong in Syria, says Patrick Cockburn
Charlie Gilmour: 'I wondered if I would end up killing myself in jail'

Charlie Gilmour: 'I wondered if I'd end up killing myself in jail'

Following last week's report on prison suicides, the former inmate asks how much progress we have made in the 50 years since the abolition of capital punishment