King of the hill
Ian Ogg picks out the key 10 year stats from both Sandown's Coral-Eclipse and Haydock's bet365 Old Newton Cup.
The Prince of Wales’s Stakes has been the pre-eminent guide to the Coral Eclipse with five horses coming on from Royal Ascot to lift this prize.
There is a clear pointer, therefore, to the claims of The Fugue who could bid to become the fifth favourite to justify the billing in just six renewals.
Farhh was the odd man out and he was sent off at longer than any of the successful quartet (11/4) and only failed by half-length to defy Nathaniel.
Last year’s winner, Al Kazeem, is the only one of the quintet to have won both races (Ouija Board is the only other Ascot winner to have attempted to follow up) when confirming the form with Mukhadram (second and third in the two races) and The Fugue herself who had finished third at Ascot before trailing home last of the seven runners, 12 months ago.
Although clearly failing to run up to her best, that run – her only start at Sandown – raises obvious concerns for her supporters as does the possibility of rain and the Prince of Wales’s Stakes is not the only race from the Royal meeting to have thrown up winners.
The Queen Anne and the St James’s Palace Stakes have both provided winners and both are represented through Verrazano and Night Of Thunder.
The former represents Aidan O’Brien, who needs one more victory in this race to equal the record held by Alec Taylor Jr, and ticks all of the requisite boxes.
Night Of Thunder also has an appealing profile although both three-year-old winners in this period contested the Epsom Derby so preference is for Kingston Hill on the assumption that rain tilts the ground in his favour and away from The Fugue and Verrazano.
- Winners have been aged three (2), four (4) and five (4).
- Winners have been priced between 4/7 and 12/1 with four favourites obliging.
- All winners had been successful in a Group One.
- Nine winners had won at least a third of their career starts.
- Nine winners had had either two or three starts during the current season. The exception scored on his reappearance.
- Five winners had previously won over 10 furlongs; two had won over 12 furlongs.
- Three winners had run in the Epsom Derby (one the previous year), finishing 1st, 10th and 13th.
- Eight winners finished in the first three on their preceding start with three successful.
- Eight winners had their preceding race at Royal Ascot; five in the Prince Of Wales's Stakes (1, 2, 2, 3, 4) two in the Queen Anne (5, 1) and one in the St James' Palace (3). Sea The Stars ran in the Epsom Derby while Nathaniel had run in the Champion Stakes.
The bet365 Old Newton Cup is Haydock Park’s longest standing race and has been dominated in recent years by Luca Cumani (three winners) and by horses that ran in the Duke of Edinburgh Stakes (four winners) at Royal Ascot.
Those two factors are combined with Havana Cooler who is well drawn if connections decide to adopt a prominent position and the four-year-old has very obvious claims.
Salutation re-opposes for last year’s successful stable and has a perfect draw from which to employ his prominent style of running and both runners are well enough treated.
There should be more to come from Mighty Yar and Magic Hurricane (who has course form in his favour) while a decent case can be made for Dashing Star at the prices on a line through Havana Cooler.
Old Newton Cup stats
- Winners have been aged four (8), five and seven.
- Nine winners have carried between 8-8 and 9-3.
- Nine winners have been rated between 87 and 97; the exception was 102.
- All winners have been priced between 5/2 and 16/1 with eight in single figures but only two favourites have been successful.
- Six winners either won or were placed on at least one of their previous two starts.
- Six winners had won at least three races; three of the exceptions had just a maiden to their names.
- All of the winners had won over at least 11 furlongs.
- All of the winners had either won or been placed in a class 3 handicap or higher.
- None of the winners attracted the in-running comment 'held-up'.