Tote Win: £2.60 Tote Place: £2.20,2.70
Straight Forecast: £11.03 Exacta: £10.70 Swingers: 1&2:2.10 2&3:2.70 1&3:1.70
Jackpot: £21,686.51 carried forward to Wincanton, 28th Oct
Placepot: £116.60, Pool: £118950.23, 744.46 winning tickets
Quadpot: £17.70, Pool: £7542.76, 315.08 winning tickets
A seventh Racing Post Trophy success for Aidan O'Brien courtesy of KINGSBARNS who ran out an easy winner of his second start having won a Navan maiden by seven lengths just 17 days previously. The Galileo colt was predictably slashed for the Epsom Derby and now heads the betting for the Classic with his trainer saying "We had Camelot last year and then this horse has come along." It's interesting that O'Brien saw fit to mention him in the same breath as this season's dual Classic winner given all the hype that has surrounded Camelot. In contrast, Kingsbarns had flown under the radar with all the talk earlier in the season surrounding Dundalk maiden winner Mars who hasn't been sighted since that four and three quarter length success. Of course, horses can surprise even those closest to them and that may well have been the case with this half-brother to five winners who was only supplemented for this race on the preceding Monday; indeed the other supplementary entry, Van Der Neer, filled second place. There weren't many, if any, points during the race where the result looked in doubt as he jumped well for Joseph O'Brien before settling nicely in behind the pace. He moved to the front travelling strongly and just proved green in front; it will be fascinating to see how he fares on a faster surface. The Derby trip should certainly be no problem and he impressed paddock watchers with his attitude while giving the impression that he's the type to make up into a better three year old. He makes little appeal as an ante-post prospect at this stage, however, despite the ease of his victory with the form open to question and the leading juvenile performers absent from this line-up. His trainer stated that 'all options are open' and he's certainly an interesting prospect, albeit one who still has something to prove on the book but he could do no more than win and he did win well. Steeler and Trading Leather set the benchmark going into the race but neither appeared to run up to their best. The former was on his toes in the preliminaries, bucking and kicking, and was readily brushed aside once headed despite, seemingly, only setting steady fractions at the front of the field. He's had a fairly busy time of things and it's possible that he may have gone over the top while this was the softest ground that he's encountered to date and his sire, Raven's Pass, was a top of the ground performer. Similarly, Jim Bolger had expressed concerns about conditions for Trading Leather (described as 'very ground dependent') and Teofilo's progeny have already shown a marked preference for better ground. The Autumn Stakes winner has already been touted as a Derby horse and both runners can be given another chance back on a better surface. With the form horses failing to run to their best, it was left to Van Der Neer to chase the favourite home. An easy winner of a Leicester maiden, stamina was a question mark for this son of Dutch Art but he's related to a middle distance winner and was doing all of his best work in the closing stages. He appeared to be caught a little flat-footed when the pace quickened and was unable to regain the ground that he'd lost before picking up but he certainly justified his connections' decision to pitch him in at this level; there should be more to come. Futurity Stakes winner First Cornerstone had reportedly had a slight setback (which had caused him to miss the Beresford Stakes) so may well be capable of better yet but the form of his two wins hasn't worked out extraordinarily and he may need his sights lowered. Sir Patrick Moore and Birdman were biting off more than they could chew in this company but the latter was arguably still disappointing with conditions to suit and having finished closer to both Steeler and First Cornerstone in earlier meetings - he may well have had enough for the season and it's doubtful whether he can find any improvement next term.