Ed Chamberlin column following Ayr Gold Cup and Mill Reef glory for Pierre Lapin at Newbury

Pierre Lapin won the Mill Reef in promising fashion
Pierre Lapin won the Mill Reef in promising fashion

Ed Chamberlin is looking forward to some mouthwatering juvenile contests this autumn following Saturday's success for the highly promising Pierre Lapin.

With our Indian summer looking like it's now coming to an end it's the time of year when you look for two-year-olds to put their hands up and make you look forward to the spring time.

We've had that in abundance lately.

Going back to Siskin, Earthlight and then Mums Tipple scorching up the Knavesmire, through to Pierre Lapin winning at Newbury on Saturday, we've had plenty of performances to really whet the appetite heading into all the major juvenile races that come thick and fast at the end of the season.

On the eve of the Cambridgeshire meeting at Newmarket we have a huge amount to look forward to - the only real negative is that it's still not perfectly clear in most people's minds which races come when.

We've got the Middle Park and the Rockfel next weekend and the former could be red-hot with plenty looking to stick to six furlongs and duck the cream of the crop in Pinatubo, who could be set for the Dewhurst.

Back to Pierre Lapin - or Peter Rabbit - and he's clearly held in the highest regard by the Varian team having been a buzz horse for some time. Just like his half-brother Harry Angel, having won in the May he missed most of the season but burst back onto the scene with an impressive performance in the Mill Reef.

He's a very different shape and size to Harry Angel and also a contrast to the pocket rocket Pinatubo. Pierre Lapin is a big, languid type of horse but I do hope he goes to the Dewhurst as we really want the favourite tested at Newmarket.

It was amazing to hear Jason Weaver on ITV on Saturday afternoon saying Pinatubo's National Stakes win was second only behind Arazi in the greatest two-year-old performances he's ever seen.

But there are plenty more to look out for including Siskin, Threat and Mums Tipple, among others. And it's refreshing they're all from different camps. It's worth noting that Ballydoyle could be playing catch-up a bit but you can never rule that operation out.

I really enjoyed seeing filly Quadrilateral winning at Newbury on Friday - Jason Watson and Roger Charlton are absolutely deadly when teaming up at the course and when we talk about different camps having strong contenders for 2020 it'd be brilliant to have the eloquent and charming Charlton, along with his sons Harry and Tom, back at the top table. That could only be a good thing for our sport.

Talking of deadly combinations, the second half of the season has been superb for Tom Dascombe and Richard Kingscote, who brought up 500 winners together at Haydock the other week.

They're flying high and Angel Alexander capped a brilliant season with victory in the Ayr Gold Cup, doing well to win from the near-side group.

Michael Owen landing the same race won by Kevin Keegan all those years ago with Funfair Wane has a certain symmetry to it. Footballers and the Ayr Gold Cup go pretty well together!

Well done to Ayr for the field sizes all week and the state of the ground which seemed to play fair across the track. ITV Racing viewers love big-field, competitive handicaps, and we had plenty to go at.

The best news of the weekend was hearing Pat Smullen going through the 2.5million euro barrier with funds raised for Cancer Trials Ireland. And that figure looks like it will continue to grow.

I spoke to Sir Anthony McCoy about his disastrous dismount at the Curragh and he said his legs just turned to jelly having been exhausted after the race. But he loved every minute of it.

Good luck to everyone preparing for the Henry Cecil Open Weekend in Newmarket - it promises to be highly entertaining and there are loads of opportunities to go behind the scenes at one of the world's most amazing training centres.

It's all for a great cause so get along on Sunday if at all possible.


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