Battleground masters Devious Company

Vintage Stakes report: Battleground delivers again


Battleground followed in the hoofprints of Pinatubo by landing the Veuve Clicquot Vintage Stakes at Goodwood.

Like last year's winner Aidan O'Brien's charge came here off the back of a win in the Chesham Stakes at Royal Ascot and the regally-bred 13/8 favourite never gave his backers a moment of concern.

He was brought through to challenge market rival Devious Company (4/1) going to the furlong pole and mastered that rival inside the distance for a two lengths success.

Youth Spirit (13/2) came through for third ahead of Gorytus who ran a fine race for Richard Fahey.

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Winning rider Ryan Moore told ITV Racing: "He's a beautiful horse. He's very easy and picked up the second horse quite quickly and was doing just enough in front.

"He has plenty of speed and we'll see how he develops."

O’Brien said: “We were very happy with him at home and we just thought it was a lovely race for experience for him. The ground was lovely and safe and I think Ryan was very happy with him.

“We would be thinking his next run would be the National Stakes if everything was well, but he’s a horse we’ve always loved.

“He’s very genuine and a big, powerful horse and that’s the way she (Found) was as well.”

O’Brien thinks a mile will be his trip, adding: “We thought he would be a miler probably – he’s got speed, he’s a strong traveller and he is by War Front and out of Found, so we thought he’d get a mile.

“Obviously all our two-year-olds got a little bit messed up at the start of the season, then we had to rush some of them to get to Ascot, so that wasn’t ideal.

“It’s very early for horses yet and an awful lot of horses will come out – some will improve, some will stand still and some will go back.”

Sky Bet cut the winner to 8/1 from 12s for next year's QIPCO 2000 Guineas with Betfair and Paddy Power now the same price from 10s.

Michael Shinners, Head of Sports PR at Sky Bet, said: "That was a really impressive performance from Battleground. He doesn’t look short of speed and is 8/1 for the 2000 Guineas."

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