Lion Roars at Sandown, Farewell To John and All Eyes On Newmarket
Gosden Star Won’t Be Eclipsed
On a weekend where the Three Lion’s of the England national football team where making themselves heard loud an clear out in Russia, it was only fitting that we had a Roaring Lion of our own on home soil. Surely one of the most aptly named Coral-Eclipse winners in some time – particularly should Gareth Southgate’s men go on to win it all this summer – it was indeed the John Gosden trained, Roaring Lion, who came out on top in one of the premier 1m2f contests of the flat racing season.
Previously an impressive winner of the Dante and a good third in the Derby, this son of Kitten’s Joy was well fancied ahead of this assignment, particularly following the eleventh-hour withdrawal of Derby winner and market leader, Masar.
Whilst he didn’t have things all his own way, he got the job done in the end to record a deserved first top-level success. Aidan O’Brien’s Saxon Warrior gave him the most to do but continues to come up just short with the World having looked to be at his feet following his win in the 2000 Guineas.
It’s the Juddmonte International at York which is the next logical assignment for the winner. Gosden does have Cracksman and Enable amongst the current list of entries for that race, but it is Roaring Lion who heads the betting at 7/2 with Bet365.
Dunlop Departs To Pastures New
The saddest story of the weekend came with the news that one of the true gentleman of British horseracing had finally succumbed to a long illness at the age of 78. Having sent out over 3500 winners, including 10 Classic victories, John Dunlop was a hugely popular figure amongst owners, trainers, jockeys and punters alike during his 46-year career.
Most famous for his Derby successes with Erhaab and Shirley Heights, Dunlop may now be at rest but he continues to leave his mark on the training game through his sons Ed and Harry. who have picked up the baton in admirable style in recent years.
High Quality at HQ as July Meeting Rolls Around
Sports fans continue to be spoilt rotten this summer, with the World Cup and Wimbledon continuing towards a climax. Not one to be left out, horse racing throws its hat into the ring with another fabulous three-day festival of the sport at its finest.
Kicking off on Thursday, the Newmarket July meeting features plenty to keep handicap fans occupied, informative maidens and no fewer than seven Group class contests; including the reappearance of Alpha Centauri in the Falmouth Stakes following her breath-taking success in the Coronation Stakes Royal Ascot.
The pick of the bunch though is of course the Group 1 Darley July Cup Stakes itself. With King’s Stand winner, Blue Point; Commonwealth Cup hero, Eqtidaar; 2017 and 2016 winners of this Harry Angel and Limato all set to go to post we look to be in for a real treat.