River runs in Rome

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The Independent Online
Clues to the Champion Hurdle are as likely to be found in Rome as at Newcastle or Newbury this weekend when River North takes part in the Premio Roma Vecchia on Sunday. Trained by Lady Herries, the gelding has yet to jump a hurdle in public but has the task of wresting the hurdling championship from another smart Flat performer, Alderbrook, as his target.

The Kevin Darley-ridden five-year-old is one of five British runners in the Group Three event, with the contingent completed by Asterita (ridden by Gary Carter), Chief Bee (Willie Carson), Kristal's Paradide (Giovanni Forte) and Saxon Maid (Lanfranco Dettori).

The Queen's Sharp Prod, trained by Lord Huntingdon and ridden by Olivier Peslier, thwarted the Mark Johnston-trained Branston Abby, under Jason Weaver, to spearhead a British one-two in the Listed Prix Contessina at Evry yesterday. The Royal runner made virtually all to beat last year's winner by a nose.