Racing: Ouija Board tough enough to regain title

This meting remains the Turf's closest equivalent to the Ryder Cup, but has always been a home game for the Americans. That may yet change, with Polytrack and other synthetic surfaces being introduced around the nation, promising a more level playing field in the future. For the time being, however, the turf races remain much the most obvious source of European success.

This has been the hardest season already for Ouija Board (6.55) (right), although quite possibly her best as well. With physical maturity she seems to soak everything up more serenely than ever, and if still at her best will surely go close to retrieving the Filly & Mare Turf, a prize she surrendered last year to Intercontinental.

Intercontinental's great dam, Hasili, could produce her third Breeders' Cup winner when Cacique lines up for the Turf, but he must prove his stamina. Hurricane Run is the most able runner, if only he could restore the rhythm he seems to have lost this year. Scorpion (9.35) could assist with a strong pace but, as a fresher horse, could also prove hard to catch. He looks better value than Red Rocks, who has had a long year and must reach a new peak after a tiring race last time.

The Mile is very open, though the draw may have cost Aussie Rules his otherwise excellent chance. Araafa still looks in bristling form but Gorella (8.15), so unlucky last year, has passed up a less taxing opportunity against her own sex to seek amends here. She is an ideal foil for the talents of the French prodigy, Julien Leparoux.

Naturally the clear climax, either side of the Atlantic, is the Classic. George Washington definitely merits fidelity if the local Tote odds become too dismissive. He will probably finish either first or last, and a bet would not be merely sentimental.

It would be disappointing if this vintage field did not yield a true champion, but it could become such a bearpit that an outsider picks up the pieces. Lawyer Ron (10.20) is tempting on his first start for Todd Pletcher, while a case can be made for Premium Tap. David Junior looks in good shape and has every right to go well, too.

Stan Moore saddles Satulagi in the Juvenile Fillies', and she could conceivably go well in a field lacking depth, although the best value rests in another outsider, Quick Little Miss (5.30). Circular Quay (6.10) is better than he looked last time and his sensational performance at Saratoga in the summer qualifies him as the pick in the colts' race.

Henny Hughes has been the dominant sprinter in America this season but could be burned out by a savage pace here, potentially setting the race up for a strong finisher like Too Much Bling (7.35). And Pine Island (8.55) is being well reviewed for the Distaff.

Of course, the most intense rivalry today is not necessarily transatlantic - and could yield the best bet of all. Coral is betting on the relative fortunes of Sheikh Mohammed and Coolmore. With two favourites in Bernardini and Henny Hughes, as well as the Godolphin pair in the Mile and Balletto in the Distaff, Sheikh Mohammed is 5-4 to have more winners than Coolmore.

A tie is 6-4, leaving the Coolmore partnership looking excellent value at 11-4, their runners including both Scorpion and Hurricane Run in the Turf, an equivalent hand to Godolphin in the Mile, and Circular Quay. Oh, and they also have some animal named George Washington on their side.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
people
News
Renee Zellweger as Bridget Jones
i100
Arts and Entertainment
music
News
news

Sport
football

Follow the latest news and score as Chelsea take on Maribor at Stamford Bridge.

Life and Style
tech

Company reveals $542m investment in start-up building 'a rocket ship for the mind"

Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

IT Project Manager

Competitive: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client based in Chelmsford a...

Business Intelligence Specialist - work from home

£40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: An established and growing IT Consultancy fir...

Business Intelligence Specialist - work from home

£40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: An established and growing IT Consultancy fir...

IT Manager

£40000 - £45000 per annum + pension, healthcare,25 days: Ashdown Group: An est...

Day In a Page

Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Let's talk about loss

We need to talk about loss

Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album