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O'Brien duo on track for Leger

Aidan O'Brien reports Midas Touch and Joshua Tree to be on course for the Ladbrokes St Leger at Doncaster this day week after finishing ahead of fourth-placed Ted Spread when second and third respectively in the Great Voltigeur Stakes at York behind ante-post favourite Rewilding.

"Both are intended runners. That's the plan at the moment," said O'Brien.

"They are in good form. Both ran well at York and the horse Jamie (Spencer) rode (Joshua Tree) was having his first run in a long time so we were delighted with him."

O'Brien suggested recent Tipperary winner Flying Cross could bypass Town Moor for the Irish Field St Leger at the Curragh the same day.

"It is possible Flying Cross might stay for the Irish Leger. He is in good form as well after his last run," he added.

Mark Tompkins is praying for rain in his native Yorkshire to aid Ted Spread's cause.

Sheffield-born Tompkins lifted the world's oldest Classic with Bob's Return in 1993 but dearly wants plenty of cut in the ground for Ted Spread.

The Chester Vase winner breezed through his final serious piece of work under Darryll Holland, much to his trainer's delight.

"It was just a nice piece of work. They never do too much with me," said Tompkins.

"It was just an ordinary piece of work but he did it very nicely.

"He moved well and I was happy with him. I just hope it rains. It might not rain enough and I'm just hoping for the best."

Ted Spread is generally available at 25/1 for the St Leger.

Henry Cecil's exciting juvenile Frankel is on course to put his unbeaten record on the line at the St Leger meeting. The well-related son of Galileo has only been seen once this year, winning a hot maiden at Newmarket in eyecatching fashion to leave connections delighted.

He holds a number of Group-race engagements for the remainder of the campaign but Teddy Grimthorpe, racing manager for owner Prince Khalid Abdullah, put forward a conditions race on Town Moor as his next objective.

Murbeh is set to seek compensation this month for just missing the cut in the DBS Premier Yearling Stakes at York.

The Brian Meehan-trained gelding will be aimed at either the Weatherbys Insurance £300,000 2-Y-O Stakes at Doncaster next Thursday or the Group Two Dubai Duty Free Mill Reef Stakes at Newbury nine days later.


Connections of Rio De La Plata admit the five-year-old faces an enormous task in the Prix du Moulin at Longchamp on Sunday.

Godolphin's stable stalwart was a Group One winner there as a youngster but has not run at the top level in more than two years.

However, he has been in good form this season and his win at York last month was his third success in his last four starts.

"Realistically he's going to find it very tough," said Godolphin racing manager Simon Crisford.

"On the book he should finish fifth or sixth, but he's in good form and he's come out of his York race well.

"He definitely deserves to take his chance but it's going to be a hot race and very difficult for him to be competitive because he's running against horses with superior form," said Crisford.