John Gosden fears Sky may be the limit for Elusive Kate's hopes
Trainer expects tactical Falmouth Stakes will play to the strengths of 1,000 Guineas winner
Tuesday 09 July 2013
Though John Gosden watched his string exercise this morning on a sun-warmed Warren Hill under a pristine sky, he readily identified a grey cloud ready to thwart his hopes of a first Group One victory of the year. On Friday his charge Elusive Kate will try to better last year's close runner-up spot in the Falmouth Stakes, the season's first clash of the generations for the best female milers, but despite the four-year-old's creditable warm-up fourth in the Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot, she is first choice of neither the bookmakers, the punters nor – seemingly – her trainer.
That position belongs to the three-year-old Sky Lantern, who last month added the Coronation Stakes to her 1,000 Guineas win. "Ours ran a big race against the colts" Gosden said, "and she needed the run, will be better for it and she's tough and strong-minded. But I thought there were two exceptional performances to take from Royal Ascot, and Sky Lantern's was one of them. To win the way she did from her draw was a stupendous effort."
The Falmouth Stakes, the first of two top-level contests at this week's summer festival on Newmarket's July Course, has attracted just five entries, including last year's heroine Giofra from France. "It's a tight elite gathering and will be an exciting tactical affair," added Gosden. "You need a smart turn of foot in a small field and that will favour Sky Lantern. Hughesie [the Richard Hannon-trained steel-coated filly's rider, Richard Hughes] can sit there and pounce late, just what he loves to do."
Gosden's other star pick from the Royal meeting was the Coventry Stakes winner War Command, whose third-placed Ballydoyle stablemate Sir John Hawkins is likely to start favourite for the July Stakes. But the other Group Two contest on the meeting's opening day, the Princess Of Wales's Stakes, has lost its ante-post market leader Dandino, now aiming for next month's American St Leger in Chicago. Universal, Dandino's conqueror earlier in the year, now heads the seven runners.
Newmarket has been the scene this year of two separate drugs scandals. A line may soon be drawn under the affair involving Mahmood al-Zarooni; the disgraced Goldolphin trainer's former assistant Charlie Appleby will meet the sport's licensing committee today with a view to taking over the Moulton Paddocks yard. The British Horseracing Authority report into the positive steroid samples administered by Zarooni is imminent, as is the conclusion of the separate investigation into use of the veterinary product Sungate among the town's trainers.
Chris McGrath's Nap
Kindanyce (2.20 Catterick) Showed enough last time, when drawn badly in a stronger race.
Footstepsintherain (5.10 Yarmouth) Improving type who lost out in a head-bob a week ago.
One to watch
Compensation will soon come the way of Pythagorean (Roger Charlton), only narrowly beaten on Saturday.
Where the money's going
With fast ground likely at Newmarket on Saturday, Paddy Power offer 6-1 against the six-furlong course record of 1:09:51 set by Stravinsky in 1999 being broken by the July Cup winner.
Latest in Sport
Arsenal vs Aston Villa preview: I need to prove myself again at Villa, says Scott Sinclair
Transfer news and rumours LIVE: Juan Cuadrado to Chelsea, Cristiano Ronaldo to Manchester City, United want Gareth Bale
Chelsea vs Manchester City player ratings: David Silva saves the day but which City star stole the show at Stamford Bridge?
Arsene Wenger photobombs Arsenal photo shoot - manages to look like famous 'Bigfoot' picture
Serena Williams wins Australia Open 2015: American beats Maria Sharapova in straight sets to claim a sixth title in Melbourne
- 1 Stephen Fry explains what he would say if he was 'confronted by God'
- 2 Venezuela Expo Tattoo 2015: Extreme body art from 'Vampire Woman' to 109mm earlobes
- 4 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 5 Canadian woman suing police who locked her in van with sex offender who then raped her
Stephen Fry explains what he would say if he was 'confronted by God'
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
Hard line on immigration could cost Tories the election
£15000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Now our rapidly expanding and A...
£15000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you passionate about great ...
£20000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast growing reinforcing s...
£18000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast growing reinforcing s...