Irish Champion-bound Golden Horn sparkles in Newmarket gallop
Published 05/09/2015 | 13:09
Golden Horn is on course to run in next Saturday's Qipco Irish Champion Stakes as long as the Leopardstown ground does not turn soft.
The Derby and Eclipse hero suffered a shock defeat on good to soft ground in the Juddmonte International at York last month and trainer John Gosden would not want to run his stable star in testing conditions in Ireland.
Connections will be eagerly monitoring the weather forecast after the three-year-old pleased in a warm-up spin on Newmarket's Rowley Mile course on Saturday morning.
Golden Horn, who was partnered by big-race jockey Frankie Dettori, worked over seven and a half furlongs with Dick Doughtywylie, accelerating towards the end of the gallop and finishing comfortably clear.
Gosden said: "It was either come here or the July Course, it was lovely ground out there, just on the easy side of good.
"I just wanted him to do some work where he joined with him (Dick Doughtywylie) at the two and a half and stayed with him in the dip, then quickened up the hill, which is what he did.
"I just wanted to hold him down into the dip and then lengthen away when he met the rising ground, which is what he did as it was a piece of work not a race
"It was a satisfactory piece of work and they went a solid clip as usual.
"I'm very happy to run him on good to soft, but if it goes soft he will not run. They're calling it good at the moment and I think it will remain that way no matter what, but Leaopardstown drains better than any o ther track in Ireland.
"It's not too dissimilar to Sandown, particularly the last two furlongs up the rising ground."
Dettori was also satisfied with Golden Horn's effort and expects the spin to have primed the Classic winner for next week's assignment.
He added: "It all went well and, just like John said, it was good to do something different with him. That will put the edge on him for Saturday."