Friday 15 December 2017

Dunlop eyes Red-letter day

Ashley Iveson

Leading Irish fancies Admiral Barry and Universal Truth feature among a final field of 32 runners in the Cesarewitch at Newmarket tomorrow.

Eoin Griffin's Admiral Barry lines up on the back of a runaway victory at The Curragh, while Universal Truth was last seen winning over hurdles at the Galway Festival for Dermot Weld, who also saddles Majestic Concorde.

One of the major contenders for the British team is Ed Dunlop's Red Cadeaux, the mount of Johnny Murtagh.

The Gary Moore-trained Bergo tops the weights, while Nicky Henderson -- who was successful with Landing Light in 2003 and veteran Caracciola two years ago -- is represented by Sentry Duty.

Other principals include My Arch, Oceans Minstrel, Precision Break and Hawk Mountain.

Dunlop may have withdrawn Snow Fairy and Native Khan from their respective races on Saturday, but Red Cadeaux remains firmly on target.

"This has been the long-term plan," said the Newmarket handler. "We've decided to put a pair of blinkers on him, not for any other reason than to make him concentrate."

Meanwhile, Frankel, Dream Ahead and Saamidd have all been declared among a field of six for the Group One Dubai Dewhurst Stakes.

Frankel has garnered a massive reputation in his three races to date and his usually reticent trainer Henry Cecil has described him as his best two-year-old for more than 30 years.

David Simcock's Dream Ahead, on the other hand, has already won two Group Ones and will be the form student's pick, while Godolphin's Saamidd is nicknamed Pegasus in the yard, such is the way he works at home and his victory in the Champagne Stakes was all promise.

Aidan O'Brien has narrowed his team down to just one, with Curragh maiden winner Roderic O'Connor the Ballydoyle handler's sole representative in the contest.

Glor Na Mara represents Jim Bolger -- who has such a good recent record in the race -- but this colt is still a maiden, despite running respectably in a host of Group races this season.

Completing the field is Brian Meehan's Acomb winner Waiter's Dream, which was no match for Saamidd at Doncaster.

The most notable absentee is Ed Dunlop's Native Khan, which will now wait for the Racing Post Trophy at Doncaster.

Elsewhere, Jessica Harrington's unbeaten juvenile Pathfork has been ruled out of next month's Breeders' Cup meeting after suffering a minor setback.

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