York choice facing Angel Gabrial

Angel Gabrial.
Angel Gabrial.
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ANGEL Gabrial could run in 
either the Betfred Ebor or the Lonsdale Cup at York next week.

Richard Fahey’s Northumberland Plate winner, who also finished second in the Chester Cup in May, may carry a big weight in the headline race of the four-day festival on Knavesmire, or take on the Queen’s former Ascot Gold Cup winner Estimate in the Lonsdale Cup.

The Dr Marwan Koukash-owned five-year-old could finish only fifth in the Goodwood Cup last time out, but Fahey felt that was an unsatisfactory race and that he deserves another crack at a higher level.

“I’m not sure whether he’ll run in the Ebor or the Lonsdale,” said Malton-based Fahey. “He’s fit as a flea. We’ll certainly make an entry in the Lonsdale and make a decision closer to the time after I’ve spoken to Marwan.

“If you’d told me when he came to us we’d be deciding whether to run in the Ebor or the Lonsdale I’d have been shocked as he’s a very unassuming horse.

“But I just felt the Goodwood race was messy and he deserves another shot at a race like that. We’ll see nearer the time when we’ve had a look at the entries.”

Fahey also confirmed that Garswood, winner of the Group One Prix Maurice de Gheest at Deauville on Sunday, will return to France for the Prix de la Foret at Longchamp’s Arc meeting in early October.

“It was great to win a Group One. The horse deserved it and everything dropped right,” added Fahey. “It was an improved performance. He’s been a bit disappointing this year, but six and a half furlongs and a bit of juice in the ground was grand.”

In other York news, the Darley Yorkshire Oaks remains a potential target for Roger Varian’s Group One-winning mare Ambivalent.

Last year’s Pretty Polly Stakes winner was a slightly disappointing fourth when defending her crown at the Curragh at the end of June, but showed her liking for York when winning the Middleton Stakes earlier in the year.

However, Varian admits his charge would face a difficult task if she does turn up on Knavesmire for a likely clash with John Gosden’s Oaks and King George heroine Taghrooda.

Meanwhile, Bawtry trainer David Griffiths has issued a positive bulletin about his stable star Take Cover, who is expected to take on many of Europe’s best sprinters in the £265,000 Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes.

The winner of the John Smith’s City Wall Stakes at York last month, Take Cover oozed class when landing the Group Two King George Stakes at Goodwood.

Griffiths, a former instructor at Northern Racing College, said: “It’s only our fourth season, so to have a horse as good as him, who could potentially take you around the world, it’s unbelievable.

“Take Cover seems good and well, touch wood... it is all eyes on York now.

“He is two from two around York – he won last month and he won there last year as well. He obviously likes the place.

“We’ll keep an eye on the weather – he wouldn’t run if there was any soft in the (going) description. But if it is good or faster, all being well we will go.”

Shamed North Yorkshire jockey Fergal Lynch finished fourth on Mr Bounty at Ayr – his first ride in Britain since the BHA renewed his licence after the rider admitted stopping Bond City from winning at Ripon in August 2004.

Primrose Valley galloped into the history books by becoming the first horse to win on the new Tapeta surface that has been installed by Yorkshire training legend Michael Dickinson at Wolverhampton. The horse was ridden by former champion apprentice Freddie Tylicki.

The Queen’s Carlton House, winner of the 2011 Dante at York, before finishing third in the Epsom Derby, has been retired to stud.

Formerly trained by Sir Michael Stoute, the colt was switched to Australia in March last year but failed to win a race in five starts for Melbourne 
Cup-winning handler Gai Waterhouse.

Harrogate-born James Tate’s Ruwaiyan and the Richard Fahey-trained Eastern Impact head the 68 entries for the 21st renewal of the William Hill Great St Wilfrid Stakes at Ripon this Saturday.