Monday 18 December 2017

Al Kazeem now set for Coronation Cup

Neil Morrice

Al Kazeem is to be given his chance at a Group One after claiming some prize scalps in the Qatar Bloodstock Jockey Club Stakes at Newmarket.

The Investec Coronation Cup at Epsom is on the agenda for the Roger Charlton-trained four-year-old following his convincing victory in this Group Two event, which featured three previous winners at the highest level. Ridden by James Doyle, the four-year-old stretched away to win by four and a half lengths from Quest For Peace with Melbourne Cup winner Dunaden staying on for third, a length and a quarter further back.

"James said he got tired going up the hill, but it was a very pleasing win as he had only run on that ground once before," Charlton said. "One hopes that a horse as good-looking as him will improve from three to four, and it looks as if he has unless there was an excuse with the others. That was a good performance and we'll be looking at Group One races such as the Coronation Cup."

"He was a bit fresh, he showed very good acceleration two furlongs out but just needed a blow in the final half-furlong," Dunaden's trainer Mikel Delzangles said. "We will see how he is before we make a plan."

Noble Mission, full-brother to the brilliant Frankel, did his prospects for the Investec Derby no harm with a gutsy display to take the Qatar Racing Newmarket Stakes.

Tom Queally had nowhere to go on the 7-4 favourite in what developed into a tactical five-horse affair, but the Henry Cecil-trained colt quickened nicely to get up and defeat Mariner's Cross by a neck. think he did well to win. It was a funny race. They crawled and then sprinted at the end, but he's a horse that's learning and will improve," Cecil said.

"He'll need another race before we decide where we go. He's in the Dante (at York) and there's a race back here at Newmarket which fits in well, timing wise."

Meanwhile, classy hurdler Gimli's Rock stayed on best under Tommy Treacy to score on his chasing debut in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Beginners Chase at Limerick.

The Jessica Harrington-trained six-year-old son of Rock Of Gibraltar, who wa returned a 5/1 shot, has now won on the flat, over hurdles and over fences.

Rockshandy (4/1) under Moira McElligott for Patrick Neville put in a brave effort attempting to make all, however he was just run out of it close home by the winner going down by three parts of a length at the line.

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