BALLYDOYLE duo Aloft and Bondi Beach feature in a strong Aidan O’Brien entry for the Betfred Ebor at York on August 20.
O’Brien’s three-year-olds currently share 12-1 favouritism with compatriot Quick Jack, trained by Tony Martin, and the Roger Charlton-trained Quest For More who won the Northumberland Plate 10 days ago under an inspired George Baker.
Dermot Weld, Ger Lyons, Gordon Elliott and Willie Mullins also have entries in a 115-horse list for Europe’s richest Flat handicap.
Pallasator, fourth as the 9-2 favourite in the race last season, might try again for Sir Mark Prescott, while others of note include Arab Dawn (Hughie Morrison) and Ajman Bridge (Luca Cumani).
York’s Group Two Pinsent Masons Lowther Stakes on August 20 has lured 45 fillies, including runaway Royal Ascot scorer Acapulco, who is also engaged in the Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes a day later.
Easton Angel, winner of Beverley’s Hilary Needler Trophy and runner-up to Wesley Ward’s American ace in the Queen Mary, could renew rivalry for the Michael Dods operation.
Europe’s champion colt Golden Horn tops a list of 16 horses going forward for Ascot’s midsummer highlight, the King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Stakes, on July 25.
His rivals could include Yorkshire horse Clever Cookie if there is give in the ground – Malton trainer Peter Niven is considering an audacious tilt at this celebrated prize after his stable star missed intendend engagements in both the Ascot Gold Cup and Newcastle’s Northumberland Plate because of unsuitable conditions.
And Golden Horn could also face a familiar foe if he lines up in the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe in early October, a race that is likely to be the Derby winner’s final appearance before a stud career.
Kevin Ryan’s The Grey Gatsby, a gallant second to Frankie Dettori’s mount in last Saturday’s Coral-Eclipse at Sandown, is to be trained with the Arc – Europe’s blue riband race – in mind.
“He’s come out of it great,” said the Hambleton trainer who noted that the winner was in receipt of 11lb from his stable star under Flat racing’s weight-for-age allowances. “We were surprised he didn’t lose much weight as we thought he’d lose more.
“It will be York next for the Juddmonte International, then the Ireland Champion Stakes and hopefully then on to the Arc.”
North Yorkshire jockey David Allan completed a 61-1 treble at Catterick courtesy of wins on Black Key, Father Bertie and Rodrigo De Torres