Racing: Irish sprint king Lynam picks three for Darley July Cup assault

Darley July Cup contender Moviesta. PIC: Simon Hulme

Darley July Cup contender Moviesta. PIC: Simon Hulme

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MOVIESTA, formerly with Hambleton handler Bryan Smart, is among three entries representing Irish sprint king Eddie Lynam for this year’s Darley July Cup for which there are 68 entries.

Slade Power won for Lynam last summer and although he is now retired, the Irish handler has three others willing and able to take up his mantle, including multiple Group One winner Sole Power.

With Anthem Alexander and the newly-recruited Moviesta also possibles, Lynam could be the man to beat again.

“The Darley July Cup is the jewel in the sprinting crown as far as I am concerned,” said Lynam. “I think that it’s the most high-profile of all the Group Ones.

“We had a fabulous day when winning it last year and would be delighted to win it again.

“Moviesta has been here for about four weeks and he arrived (from Bryan Smart’s yard) looking very well. But his muscle enzyme levels were very high and, although after a few weeks of light exercise they are going in the right direction, it will be June before he is ready to run.

“Anthem Alexander is very well and I am very happy with her. She is definitely a sprinter, it’s just a matter of working out if she is best over five or six furlongs. Her next aim is the Commonwealth Cup at Ascot and, providing we get some summer weather and summer ground, I hope to get a run into her before then. She won’t be taking up her entry at Nottingham on Saturday but there are other possible races for her at Naas and Haydock Park.

“Sole Power was going to come over to Newmarket for the Palace House Stakes but he had a minor hiccup which required antibiotics so, given that he would have had to carry an 8lb penalty, we decided not to come. We intend to bring him over for the Temple Stakes and the King’s Stand Stakes and, if the Darley July Cup was run on fast ground, I would love him to take his chance.”

No fewers the 24 of the entries are from overseas, with Wesley Ward giving Royal Ascot winner Hootenanny the option, along with last year’s fourth Undrafted.

Australia’s Brazen Beau and Wandjina would be interesting contenders, with French raiders Gammarth, Goken and Rangali also boasting strong form.

Tiggy Wiggy, Limato, Gordon Lord Byron, Danzeno and Muthmir are all among the classy entry. Looking ahead to this weekend. New Providence is set to run Saturday’s Lingfield’s Betfred Membership “Play Your Way” Chartwell Fillies’ Stakes rather than the French 1000 Guineas on Sunday.

Trainer Hugo Palmer was keen to head to France with the Nell Gwyn runner-up but very soft ground at Longchamp led the Newmarket handler to withdraw his filly.

He said “I think we’ll go to Lingfield now, as long as it’s not very soft.

Palmer added: “She carries a penalty and has to take on older horses but it looks the right thing to do.”

Big Orange, ridden by jockey Jamie Spencer (centre) coming home to win the Qatar Goodwood Cup last summer.

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