Twice Over has first crack at stopping stablemate Frankel
Sadly it already seems certain that Frankel will end his career without exploring the full reach of his talent, but at least nobody will be able to reproach those responsible for their approach to his next start. For not only will they finally test their champion over a new distance at York next Wednesday; they also intend to expose one of their most cherished servants to his merciless brilliance.
Twice Over is perhaps not quite the force of old, at seven, but he ran well when third in the Eclipse last time and did turn over a better fancied stablemate, Midday, in the Juddmonte International Stakes last year.
As racing manager to Prince Khalid Abdulla, Lord Grimthorpe would hate to see Frankel surrender his unbeaten record; as chairman of York racecourse, however, he hopes for as competitive a field as possible. "And why wouldn't we support the race with the defending champion?" he asked yesterday.
With Aidan O'Brien saddling the seasoned Group One operator, St Nicholas Abbey, the participation of Twice Over should ensure a little more depth to this race than Frankel's latest lap of honour, at Goodwood. "It is wonderful to take Frankel to York, and I'm confident the Yorkshire crowd will come to see him," Grimthorpe said. "When I was there last time people were stopping me all the time saying: 'You are bringing him, aren't you?' This is Prince Khalid's 22nd year of sponsoring the Juddmonte International, so to bring Frankel to the race is hugely important to him. This year it has been foremost in our thoughts. Frankel has proved himself versatile as regards tracks. And York is a tremendously fair track."
He would say that, of course – but corroboration was immediately available from Simon Crisford. The Godolphin manager expects Encke, caught out by the undulations when foiled narrowly by Frankel's brother, Noble Mission, in the Gordon Stakes at Goodwood, to relish the wide, galloping acres of the Knavesmire when they meet again in the Ladbrokes Great Voltigeur Stakes. Grimthorpe, however, reckons that Noble Mission may have been in front too soon that day.
Crisford, who added that Farrh, the Sussex Stakes runner-up, could yet follow Frankel north, confirmed that Energizer will be supplemented to the Great Voltigeur. It will be the German recruit's first start for Godolphin, and his first over a mile and a half, having changed hands since his impressive breakthrough at Royal Ascot.
Kalk Bay (4.25 Beverley) Had slipped down the weights before retrieving form for Mick Easterby.
First Serve (5.45 Southwell) David Barron's, juveniles do especially well on this surface.
One to watch
Cape Classic (William Haggas) Can definitely stay ahead of the handicapper judging by way he was travelling at Newmarket.
Latest in Sport
Manchester United's David Moyes may have more joy if he drops the frustrated Robin Van Persie
Tim Sherwood rules out being No 2 at Tottenham Hotspur following embarrassing Chelsea defeat
England 29 Wales 18 match report: Stuart Lancaster's men enjoy their day in the sun at expense of weary Wales
England 29 Wales 18 player ratings: Who was the star man at Twickenham?
FA Cup semi-finals: Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger confirms Lukasz Fabianski will start in goal against Wigan Athletic
- 1 International Women's Day 2014: The shocking statistics that show why it is still so important
- 2 Australian man Rod Sommerville reacts to bite from deadly snake by reaching for cold beer
- 3 Teacher shows sex tape featuring herself to pupils during class by mistake
- 4 Singapore sting: Sky-high prices are pushing locals to the edge of affordability
- 5 Swarm of killer bees sting woman 1,000 times
Britain's top vet sparks controversy with call for ban on slashing animals' throats in 'ritual' slaughters for halal and kosher meat products
If you're horrified by a flame-roasted dog, you should be shocked at a hog roast
Poor 'live like animals' says Boris's privately educated sister after going on 'poverty safari'
Exclusive: Impact of immigrants on British workers ‘negligible’
Vince Cable: Teachers 'know absolutely nothing' about the world of work
Ukraine crisis: Russia pledges to 'retaliate against sanctions' as Ukrainian president says Crimea vote will not be recognised
£120 - £130 per day: Randstad Education Group: Geography TeacherApril 2014Mate...
£17000 - £30000 per annum + Daily rate TBC: Randstad Education Reading: Teache...
£50 - £65 per day: Randstad Education Group: Secondary Teaching Assistant (EAL...
£55000 per annum + superb benefits: Pro-Recruitment Group: Want to work in a L...