Turf Talk: O’Brien launches three-pronged attack on Town Moor

Magna Gregia's trainer, Aidan O'Brien. PIC: David Davies/PA Wire
Magna Gregia's trainer, Aidan O'Brien. PIC: David Davies/PA Wire
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Magna Grecia will spearhead a three-pronged attack by Aidan O’Brien on tomorrow’s Vertem Futurity Trophy at Doncaster.

The Ballydoyle handler has an excellent record in the Group One – with eight wins to his name, including Saxon Warrior last year – but he is still behind Sir Henry Cecil’s 10 victories on the roll of honour.

Jockey Andrea Atzeni (centre) celebrating with owner Bjorn Nielsen (second left) and trainer John Godsen (second right) after Stradivarius won the Qatar Goodwood Cup Stakes last year. PIC: John Walton/PA Wire

Jockey Andrea Atzeni (centre) celebrating with owner Bjorn Nielsen (second left) and trainer John Godsen (second right) after Stradivarius won the Qatar Goodwood Cup Stakes last year. PIC: John Walton/PA Wire

O’Brien has sent the likes of High Chaparral, St Nicholas Abbey and Camelot to Town Moor for the final Group One of the season in Britain.

Magna Grecia, second to Andre Fabre’s Persian King in the Autumn Stakes, will be joined by Circus Maximus and Western Australia.

Magna Grecia was supplemented earlier in the week, along with Ralph Beckett’s Stormwave – winner of his only start to date.

John Gosden saw Roaring Lion beaten in this last year and sends two – Kick On, in the same Qatar Racing colours, and Turgenev who was very impressive in winning his last two.

Phoenix Of Spain runs for Charlie Hills, having taken on Too Darn Hot in the Champagne Stakes, while Raakib Alhawa will aim to follow up his Newbury debut win.

Dashing Willoughby, Great Scott, King Ottokar and Kuwait Currency complete the 11-strong field.

n Connections of Stradivarius hope he can establish himself as a staying great and join an élite list of multiple winners of the Ascot Gold Cup.

The John Gosden-trained four-year-old signed of his hugely successful campaign when registering a fifth straight victory this season in the Group Two Long Distance Cup at Ascot’s Champions Day.

His owner Bjorn Nielsen said: “To own a horse like that only comes around once in a lifetime. He will start off next season in either the Sagaro at Ascot or the Yorkshire Cup – and see how we go – but the Ascot Gold Cup will be the main aim again.”

SOBOT’S SELECTIONS

DONCASTER: 1.45 Garrus, 2.15 Beat Le Bon, 2.55 Busy Street, 3.25 Ornate, 4.05 MAGNA GRECIA (NAP), 4.35 Ripp Orf (next best), 5.10 Dubai Acclaim.

NEWBURY: 1.10 Shrewdness, 1.40 K Club, 2.20 Young Rascal (treble), 2.50 Chairmanoftheboard, 3.20 Muchly, 3.55 Zofelle, 4.30 Chatez, 5.05 Collodi.

CHELTENHAM: 2.00 Singlefarmpayment, 2.35 Gumball, 3.10 Bigmartre, 3.45 Theclockisticking, 4.20 Knight In Dubai, 4.55 de Name Evades Me, 5.30 Genius.

KELSO: 1.50 Zamarkhan, 2.25 Bafana Blue, 3.00 Captain Redbeard, 3.35 An Fear Cluin, 4.10 Vengeur de Guye, 4.40 Big Time Dancer, 5.15 Handy Hollow.

KEMPTON: 5.45 Hit The Beat, 6.15 Designated, 6.45 Where’s Perle, 7.15 Lolanta, 7.45 Manson, 8.15 Louie de Palma, 8.45 Archimento.