Withdrawal at Ascot opens up possible Ebor bid for Lumiere

TOP Prospect Lumiere could light up York’s Ebor festival after connections decided to skip an intended date in tomorrow’s Princess Maragaret Stakes at Ascot.

Lumiere ridden by William Buick wins The John Deere EBF Stallions Maiden Fillies Stakes earlier this month.
Lumiere ridden by William Buick wins The John Deere EBF Stallions Maiden Fillies Stakes earlier this month.

Middleham trainer Mark Johnston suggested the two-year-old filly, a wide-margin winner of her only race to date, could be supplemented for the Pinsent Masons Lowther Stakes.

Ridden by William Buick, the daughter of Shamardal skipped six lengths clear and was immediately promoted to the head of the market for next year’s 1000 Guineas.

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She was expected to cement those claims at Ascot but was not among the declarations for the Group Three.

“It’s not because of the rain that is due, we’ve just decided not to run her,” said Johnston. “There’s a possibility we could supplement her for the Lowther. I just need to check what other options there are for her but that would be the next logical one.”

His stable is certainly in a rich vein of form thanks to Fireglow, another exciting two-year-old, beating Dessertoflife in a one-two at Sandown yesterday.

The winner could be aimed at the Group One Moyglare Stud Stakes, one of the feature races on Ireland’s champions weekend in September.

“That’s what we hoped for but I did see beforehand there were three or four unbeaten fillies in the race and she was not one of them,” said Johnston. “There were a lot of unexposed runners in there but it was a case of job done. We’ve just been debating where she will go next. We will just have to have a think, but the Moyglare may be for her.”

Declarations, meanwhile, have been finalised for tomorrow’s big races. As expected, Golden Horn will attempt to defend his unbeaten record in the King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot. If successful, John Gosden’s stable star will become just the fourth horse after Tulyar (1952), Mill Reef (1971) and Nashwan to win the Epsom Derby, Coral-Eclipse and King George treble in the same year.

However, David O’Meara’s Custom Cut will have to concede weight to seven rivals in the Sky Bet York Stakes, the feature race on the final weekend of the Go Racing in Yorkshire Summer Festival.

Tonight’s action at York sees Pamona attempt to turn the tables with Crystal Zvezda in the British Stallion Studs EBF Lyric Fillies’ Stakes.

Sir Michael Stoute’s Crystal Zvedza was a hugely impressive winner of a Listed race at Newbury in May with Pamona back in third and went to Epsom strongly fancied for the Oaks.

However, she blew her chance in the Classic by running free early and wears a hood for the first time while Pamona ran a very respectable race to finish third in the Ribblesdale at Royal Ascot next time out.

“Pamona has done nothing but improve with every run this season and Luca Cumani sends her to York full of confidence and thinks she has a smashing chance,” read a report on owners Highclere Thoroughbred Racing’s website.