DARWIN has made a big impression since arriving from the USA and his victory over 7f here in July could hardly have been given a bigger boost by the runner-up Gordon Lord Byron. Aidan O'Brien's charge is still in the Champion Stakes and the QEII so this should be within his capabilities. Brendan Brackan won a handicap at this fixture a year ago when there was some give in the ground, as there was when he scored at Galway in July, so any rain would aid his cause. Elleval's last success was at Meydan in February but he's been going well at this sort of level while the selection's stablemate Indian Chief, third in the Dante, is surely better than he showed when last of three at Killarney.
Ansgar (IRE) 12-1 (9-13) Prominent, ridden 2 1/2f out, led under 2f out, soon strongly pressed, headed under 1f out, no extra final furlong, 4th of 20, 3l behind Moran Gra (8-13) at Curragh 1m hcp gf.
Bold Thady Quill (IRE) 14-1 (9-12) Dwelt and always towards rear, no threat from 2f out, kept on one pace, 13th of 16, 7l behind Royal Blue Star (9-4) at Cork 1m Listed stks (1) gd in Aug.
Brendan Brackan (IRE) 6-1 (9-6) In touch, lost place over 2f out, 13th of 18, 9l behind Wentworth (8-10) at Goodwood 1m hcp (2) gd in Aug.
Stuccodor (IRE) 10-1 (9-11) Mid-division, no impression from 2f out, never a factor, 16th of 20, 14l behind Moran Gra (8-13) at Curragh 1m hcp gf.
Darwin 8-11fav (9-2) Soon tracked leader, niggled along over 2f out, led over 1 1/2f out, stayed on well, won at Curragh 7f Grp 3 (1) gf in Jul beating Gordon Lord Byron (10-0) by 1 3/4l, 5 ran.
Negotiate 40-1 (9-4) Rear of mid-division and 11th halfway, no impression and slightly checked early final furlong, 14th of 16, 8l behind Royal Blue Star (9-4) at Cork 1m Listed stks (1) gd in Aug.
Elleval (IRE) 14-1 (9-3) Held up in touch, ridden in 6th 2f out, headway into 2nd over 1f out, disputed lead 1f out, stayed on final furlong, headed and no extra close home, 2nd of 7, 1/2l behind The United States (9-3) at Leopardstown 1m 2f Grp 3 (1) gd.
Fort Knox 3-1fav (9-5) Tracked leaders and 7th halfway, switched right under 2f out and 4th 1f out, kept on one pace under pressure inside final furlong, 4th of 16, 1 1/4l behind Royal Blue Star (9-4) at Cork 1m Listed stks (1) gd in Aug.
Indian Chief (IRE) 4-11fav (9-5) Chased leaders in last throughout, ridden 2 1/2f out, no impression on leaders over 1f out, last of 3, 4l behind Opera Gloves (9-0) at Killarney 1m 3f stks gd in Aug.
Sruthan (IRE) 5-1 (8-13) Raced 5th of the 6, dropped to last under pressure 1f out, soon no impression, last of 6, 5l behind Leitir Mor (9-2) at Leopardstown 7f Grp 3 (1) in Jun.