Tactical speed can win battle for War

 

Racing Correspondent

Even the bitter certainty that they will occasionally put a rider into intensive care is a reflection on the essential unpredictability of thoroughbreds.

So while the professional community remains preoccupied by the fate of Brian Toomey, the young jump jockey injured at Perth on Thursday, few punters will be relying excessively on the resemblance between the big race at Sandown today and one staged at Ascot 17 days ago.

Yes, three of the seven runners in the Coral Eclipse Stakes filled the frame in the Prince of Wales’s Stakes – over the same distance, on another right-handed track, over similarly fast going. Yet nobody could be surprised if things play out differently today. And that applies even to the trio who reconvene, quite apart from the likelihood that some new opponent will prove competent to intrude.

For one thing, Mukhadram was given an inch-perfect ride from the front at Ascot, suddenly opening up from the last bend after profiting from an artful breather turning in. Even then he was just unable to stem Al Kazeem’s late surge, and he can  hardly hope to be seen to better advantage this time. Having said that, the small field gives Paul Hanagan every opportunity to dominate once again, not least from a draw on the rail; and Mukhadram, still with very few miles on the clock, is plainly improving with maturity.

Al Kazeem, for his part, had been building up to something like that for a good while. The disappointing  performance of Camelot at Ascot put their encounter at the Curragh the previous month in due context, but Al Kazeem has now rewarded the patience of his connections with an unequivocal breakthrough. He also made an impressive reconnaissance of this course and distance in the spring.

The only reservation is the price against a horse contesting his third Group One prize in six weeks. In fact, there is a similar rogue element for all the main contenders, five being obliged to bounce back from a hard race at Ascot and the respected  German raider, Pastorius, returning from a gruelling trip to Singapore a few weeks ago.

The Fugue is very tempting on that account, having been allowed to find her way into her comeback race at Ascot, finishing off strongly for third. She had no chance of winning, given the way the race had been set up, but is entitled to improve for the run and her turn of foot in these conditions makes her look eligible to emulate the success of her stablemate Nathaniel last year.

But the value sooner rests with the fresh blood from Ballydoyle. For one thing, this intermediate trip looks ideal for Mars. He has just lacked the pace to cut down his best contemporaries over a mile, first in the 2,000 Guineas and then in the St James’s Palace Stakes, but shaped extremely well when set plenty to do and then hampered in the Derby. He has already had a tough  campaign for one previously confined to a single maiden at two, but if able to hold his form could make a bold stand for the Classic generation with his weight allowance.

At the odds, however, it is worth stressing that Al Kazeem was not the only one to announce himself as a legitimate Group One performer at the royal meeting. Declaration Of War (3.50) had been backed like one,  before bombing out in the Lockinge Stakes at Newbury, and showed why with a fine performance in the Queen Anne Stakes. Held up in his run, he burst through late to cut down Aljamaa-  heer and that mile acceleration could just set him apart against these  middle-distance types. He is proven at the extra distance, albeit in lesser grade, and this looks a significant choice of target for a son of War Front with a big commercial future at stud.

As for Toomey, he remains in a stable condition in a Dundee hospital after suffering serious head injuries in a fall at Perth. No further update is anticipated before tomorrow.

Turf Account

CHRIS McGRATH’S NAP

Frog Hollow (8.15 Carlisle)

NEXT BEST

Ashaadd (4.40 Haydock)

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
video
Life and Style
tech
Sport
Jodie Stimpson crosses the finishing line to win gold in the women's triathlon
Commonwealth games
Arts and Entertainment
While many films were released, few managed to match the success of James Bond blockbuster 'Skyfall'
film
News
John Barrowman kisses his male “bride” at a mock Gretna Green during the Commonwealth Games opening ceremony
peopleBarrowman's opening ceremony message to Commonwealth countries where he would be sent to prison for being gay
Arts and Entertainment
Jamie Dornan stars as Christian Grey in the Fifty Shades of Grey movie
filmFirst look at Jamie Dornan in Fifty Shades of Grey trailor
Life and Style
Phillips Idowu, Stella McCartney and Jessica Ennis
fashionMcCartney to continue designing Team GB Olympics kit until 2016
Sport
Shinji Kagawa and Reece James celebrate after the latter scores in Manchester United's 7-0 victory over LA Galaxy
football
Sport
Farah returns to the track with something to prove
Commonwealth games
Voices
voicesGood for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, writes Grace Dent
Life and Style
fashion Designs are part of feminist art project by a British student
Arts and Entertainment
The Tour de France peloton rides over a bridge on the Grinton Moor, Yorkshire, earlier this month
film
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

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

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Biomass Sales Consultant

£20000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: The Green Recruitment Company...

Java Developer

competitive: Progressive Recruitment: My Client are a successful software hous...

Senior Analyst - Financial Modelling

competitive: Progressive Recruitment: This really is a fantastic chance to joi...

MS Dynamics NAV/Navision Developer

£45000 - £53000 per annum + Benefits: Progressive Recruitment: **MS DYNAMICS N...

Day In a Page

Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

Meet the US Army's shooting star

Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform
Climate change threatens to make the antarctic fur seal extinct

Take a good look while you can

How climate change could wipe out this seal
Should emergency hospital weddings be made easier for the terminally ill?

Farewell, my lovely

Should emergency hospital weddings be made easier?
Man Booker Prize 2014 longlist: Crowdfunded novel nominated for first time

Crowdfunded novel nominated for Booker Prize

Paul Kingsnorth's 'The Wake' is in contention for the prestigious award
Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster to ensure his meals aren't poisoned

Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster

John Walsh salutes those brave souls who have, throughout history, put their knives on the line
Tour de France effect brings Hollywood blockbusters to Yorkshire

Tour de France effect brings Hollywood blockbusters to Yorkshire

A $25m thriller starring Sam Worthington to be made in God's Own Country
Will The Minerva Project - the first 'elite' American university to be launched in a century - change the face of higher learning?

Will The Minerva Project change the face of higher learning?

The university has no lecture halls, no debating societies, no sports teams and no fraternities. Instead, the 33 students who have made the cut at Minerva, will travel the world and change the face of higher learning
The 10 best pedicure products

Feet treat: 10 best pedicure products

Bags packed and all prepped for holidays, but feet in a state? Get them flip-flop-ready with our pick of the items for a DIY treatment
Commonwealth Games 2014: Great Scots! Planes and pipers welcome in Glasgow's Games

Commonwealth Games 2014

Great Scots! Planes and pipers welcome in Glasgow's Games
Jack Pitt-Brooke: Manchester City and Patrick Vieira make the right stand on racism

Jack Pitt-Brooke

Manchester City and Patrick Vieira make the right stand on racism
How Terry Newton tragedy made iron men seek help to tackle their psychological demons

How Newton tragedy made iron men seek help to tackle their psychological demons

Over a hundred rugby league players have contacted clinic to deal with mental challenges of game