HUGO PALMER has been hitting the crossbar more than he would have liked with his team in recent weeks, but with his star striker Galileo Gold back in action in the Al Shaqab Lockinge at Newbury on Saturday he will be looking to return to a more familiar role where the winners flow freely.
Galileo Gold gave Palmer a momentous 2000 Guineas success at Newmarket last year and gained a second Group 1 success in the St James's Palace Stakes at Royal Ascot, and Hawksmoor chipped in with another Classic success in the German 1000 Guineas.
Home Of The Brave remains one of the stable stalwarts and lifted the King Richard III Stakes at Leicester for a second time recently. The talent doesn't stop there, with the likes of Crimean Tatar, the classy dual Oaks runner-up Architecture, along with Best of Days, Gifted Master, Afandem and Unforgetable Filly ensuring that the Kremlin Cottage outfit will glean plenty of top class success again this term.
Hugo kindly spoke to Tony Elves of ATR about his hopes for Galileo Gold ahead of the Lockinge and several he hopes will be making their marks shortly.
4 b f Zoffany - Brigayev
Winner of one of her eight starts and currently rated 111. Failed to add to her score as a three-year-old but runner-up in both the Investec Oaks at Epsom (1m 4f) and the Darley Irish Oaks at the Curragh (1m 4f) last season
"She has had a slight setback and we won't see her until the Autumn but she developed into a high class filly last year when finishing runner-up in the Epsom and Irish Oaks. She has no penalties as she didn't win last year and we need to make her a stakes winner."
4 b g Smart Strike - Beyond Our Reach
Winner of two of his 12 starts and currently rated 90. Finished fifth, beaten five lengths, to Storm King in a handicap at Chester (1m 2 1/2f) on Friday off his current mark.
"He might go to Redcar for the Zetland Gold Cup or similar sorts of races. He needs things to go right for him but he will have his day in the sun. We might step him up to a mile and a half but no further."
4 b c Rock Of Gibraltar - Splashdown
Winner of five of his 8 starts and currently rated 105. Was winning for the fourth time in succession when beating Scarlet Dragon half a length at Newbury (1m 2f) last September off a mark of 99.
"He was due to run in the mile and a half listed race at Ascot on Saturday but the ground was too firm. He might now run in the Aston Park at Newbury this weekend or he might go for the listed race at Goodwood the following Saturday. He was very progressive last season and has done well from three to four and I am hoping he will make the transition to Pattern company this season."
4 b c Sea The Stars - Unity
Winner of two of his 3 starts and currently rated 109. Scored by seven lengths from Mazalto on his debut at Newmarket (1m 4f) last July and followed up with a half length defeat of Chemical Charge in a Listed event at Kempton (1m 4f) in November when seen out next. Creditable reappearance in the Group 3 John Porter Stakes at Newbury (1m 4f) in April when fourth, beaten two lengths, to Muntahaa.
"He will run in the Yorkshire Cup provided the ground isn't too quick which I don't think it will be but otherwise he could run in the Aston Park as well. He is already rated 109 and is a seriously exciting prospect. Hopefully, he will develop into a top class staying horse and be effective over trip ranging from a mile and a half to two and a half miles in the Ascot Gold Cup."
4 ch c Paco Boy - Galicuix
Winner of five of his 11 starts and currently rated 121. Winner of the Group 1 Qipco 2000 Guineas at Newmarket in April of last year when beating Massaat a length and a half and also the Group 1 St James's Palace Stakes at Royal Ascot scoring by a length and a quarter from The Gurkha.
"We were obviously delighted with his win in the 2000 Guineas and with hindsight I wish we hadn't run him in the Irish Guineas where he finished runner-up to Awtaad. We got him back for the St James's Palace but he had endured three hard races and also had a skin complaint and he didn't run to his best afterwards. He is going to be more sparingly campaigned this time around and he starts off in the Lockinge at Newbury on Saturday. He is in great shape and mentally he is much more relaxed and switched off. He will have the usual targets after the Lockinge - the Queen Anne at Royal Ascot and the Sussex Stakes at Goodwood."
4 b g Kodiac - Shobobb
Winner of six of his 16 starts and currently rated 109. Disappointed in two efforts at Meydan in February and March.
"He was a bit sick when he came back from Dubai so he has had a bit of a break. All being well he is coming back into work in the next ten days."
HOME OF THE BRAVE
5 ch h Starspangledbanner - Blissful Beat
Winner of five of his 14 starts and currently rated 114. Landed the Listed King Richard III Stakes at Leicester (7f) in April for the second year running when beating Tasleet a length and three quarters.
"He goes for the John Of Gaunt at Haydock and then the Lennox Stakes at Goodwood. He won the King Richard III Stakes for the second time last month and he is a horse that seems to respond well to having a bit of time between his races."
4 b c Raven's Pass - Lady Elgar
Winner of three of his 5 starts and currently rated 99. Completed a hat trick when beating Ballet Concerto a head at Thirsk (1m) in September off a mark of 92.
"He will either run in the Hambleton at York or in a handicap at Newbury at the weekend. Hopefully, he will then go for the Royal Hunt Cup at Royal Ascot."
4 b g Lope De Vega - Biswa
Winner of one of his six starts and currently rated 94. Unplaced to Prize Money on his debut for the stable at Doncaster (1m 4f) in November off a mark of 95.
"He will run in whatever mile and a quarter/mile and a half handicap I can get some rain for. He is constantly being entered and we are just waiting for the weather."
TO BE WILD
4 br c Big Bad Bob - Fire Up
Winner of two of his 4 starts and currently rated 104. Off the mark in a maiden at Ffos Las (1m 4f) last July and followed up with a four length defeat of Percy Street off a mark of 93 in a handicap at Doncaster (1m 4f).
"He needs a bit of rain as well and he could run in the Aston Park at Newbury at the weekend."
WALL OF FIRE
4 b c Canford Cliffs - Bright Sapphire
Winner of four of his 11 starts and currently rated 107. Put in another creditable effort in the Group 3 Ormonde Stakes at Chester (1m 5 1/2f) last week when fourth, beaten a length and a half, to Western Hymn.
"He continues to run well and put in a career best effort in the Ormonde Stakes at Chester last week. He might go to the Listed race at York in two weeks time."
b c Vale of York - Al Mahmeyah
Winner of four of his 10 starts and currently rated 105. Winner of the Group 3 Prix D'Arenberg at Chantilly (5f) in September by a length and a quarter from Hargeisa.
"He needs soft ground and five furlongs and if it rains he could go for the Temple Stakes we will just watch the skies."
ch f Raven's Pass - Artisti
No wins from 3 starts. Creditable third, beaten two lengths, to Maid To Remember at Nottingham (1m 1/2f) this month.
"Needs fast ground and ran very well at Nottingham last week. She should find a maiden no problem but it rained just before he raced at Nottingham."
b g Zoffany - Corking
Winner of one of his 4 starts and currently rated 82. Off the mark with a two and a half length defeat of Hochfield at Wolverhampton (1m 1/2f) in November but disappointing last of eight to Flood Warning on his return at Sandown (1m 2f) in April.
"He needs a bit of cut in the ground and he has been gelded since disappointing at Sandown but he will be back on track in early June."
BEST OF DAYS
b c Azamour - Baisse
Winner of two of his three starts and currently rated 110. Made a winning debut at Sandown (7f) in July when beating Wahash six lengths and beaten only a head by Syphax in the Group 3 Acomb Stakes at York (7f) the following month. Signed off his season with a neck victory from The Anvil in the Group 2 Royal Lodge Stakes at Newmarket (1m) in September.
"He may well go straight to the Derby but he's in great shape and we will make a call about that in the next ten days."
b c Excelebration - Blissful Beat
Winner of one of his 4 starts and currently rated 79. Off the mark with a neck victory from Armandihan at Redcar (1m) in April and creditable third, beaten two lengths, to Leader's Legacy at Haydock (1m) on Saturday off his current mark.
"He ran a good race at Haydock on Saturday and will come under consideration for the Britannia Handicap at Royal Ascot."
ch f Exceed And Excel - Cloud Castle
Winner of one of her 3 starts and currently rated 91. Finished sixth, beaten seven and a quarter lengths behind Victory Angel in a handicap at Newmarket (6f) in April off a mark of 93.
"She might run at York and needs decent ground. We are coming back to five furlongs with her as she has plenty of speed."
b c Redoute's Choice - High Days
Winner of one of his 4 starts and currently rated 93. Finished close fourth, beaten three quarters of a length, to Atty Persse in the Esher Cup at Sandown (1m) in April off a mark of 92.
"He is a really nice horse and ran a good race on his reappearance in the Esher Cup. He is another who could be a Britannia Handicap horse and he just needs to get his toe in a little bit."
b c Famous Name - Saying Grace
Winner of two of his 3 starts and currently rated 106. Winner of his first two starts over seven furlongs at Newbury in July and August and gained his second success with a length and a quarter win from Mr Scaramanga. Unplaced to Larchmont Lad in the Group 3 Tattersalls Stakes at Newmarket (7f) in September.
"There has been nothing wrong with him at all but he just didn't come right in time for the 2000 Guineas. His work has been that of a very good horse but not a champion but he is looking better. He took a long time to come in his coat and has just started to blossom. The plan is to take him to the Heron Stakes at Sandown."
ch c Galileo - Tereschenko
Placed in two of his 3 starts and currently rated 85. Failed by only a neck behind The Grand Visir at Yarmouth (1m 3 1/2f) this month.
"I think he met one the other day at Yarmouth and I think he is a nice horse. We will look to win his maiden then he could run in the Queen's Vase or the King Edward VII Stakes. I hope he can be a St Leger horse by the end of the season."
b c Sayif - Sweet Coincidence
Winner of one of his 5 starts and currently rated 90. Scored by a length from Dubai Horizon in a maiden at York (7f) in October and beaten seven lengths when last of seven to Eminent in the Group 3 Craven Stakes at Newmarket (1m) in April. Finished fourth, beaten a length, to Englishman at Windsor on Monday night.
"We sent him back Sprinting at Windsor on Monday and he ran a very encouraging race after missing the break. He should find his races as the season progresses."
b c Harlan's Holiday - Glowing
Winner of one of his 3 starts and currently rated 84. Made a winning debut at Newcastle (1m) in March when scoring by five lengths from Trenchard.
"I think we will keep him to a mile and a quarter for present and he needs a bit of cut in the ground. It was far too quick for him at Newmarket.
b c Intense Focus - Jouet
Winner of two of his 6 starts and currently rated 87. Finished a highly creditable third, beaten a length behind Jumira Bridge at Sandown (5f) in April off a mark of 85.
"There are nice races in him. He blew his chance first time out when we ran him over five and he wants to go six. He seems to have settled now so there should be some fun races in him."
KIND OF BEAUTY
ch f Helmet - Extreme Beauty
Winner of one of her two starts and currently rated 78. Made a winning debut at Yarmouth (1m) in August when beating Tomorrowcomes half a length and finished fifth, beaten a length and three quarters to that horse in a handicap at Pontefract (1m) the following month off her current mark.
"She had a slight setback but is nearly ready to go now. I think she could be progressive over middle distances."
b c Kodiac - Kathoe
Winner of one of his 4 starts and currently rated 105. Impressive winner on his debut at Thirsk (6f) last August and finished fifth, beaten four lengths, to The Last Lion in the Group 1 Middle Park Stakes at Newmarket (6f) in September.
"He runs at Newbury on Saturday in the Carnavon Stakes. He is in good form, I'm happy with him and fingers crossed for a good run."
b c Lope De Vega - Gooseberry Pie
Winner of one of his 2 starts and currently rated 84. Scored by a head from Dayking on his reappearance at Wolverhampton (1m 1/2f) at the end of April.
"We missed the Derby dream as the weather hasn't favoured him at the right moments but he could run at Newbury this week and then we will see where we are with him. He could be a King George V Handicap horse."
br g Mayson - Hypnotize
Winner of one of his 7 starts and currently rated 88. Respectable effort when fifth, beaten two and three quarter lengths, to Danielsflyer at Newmarket (6f) in May off a mark of 89.
"He should win when things go his way. He is a little bit of a nearly horse as he has won a fair bit of prize money but only one race and made heavy weather of that. He might run at York this week over seven furlongs."
ch c Poet's Voice - Caribbean Pearl
Winner of his only start at Chelmsford (1m) in October when beating Sufi three quarters of a length.
"I hope he will be a progressive handicapper but we haven't just got a line on him yet. I am not quite sure where he is going to start."
b f Sepoy - Beautiful Filly
Winner of one of her 6 starts and currently rated 105. Made a pleasing reappearance when runner-up, beaten three quarters of a length, to Daban in the Group 3 Nell Gwyn Stakes at Newmarket (7f) in April and subsequently finished sixth, beaten 10 ¾ lengths, to Winter in the Group 1 Qipco 1000 Guineas at Newmarket (1m) in May.
"I was delighted with both her starts this season in the Nell Gwyn and the 1000 Guineas and she might go for a seven furlong listed race at Musselburgh on June 3."
b g Invincible Spirit - Mambo Light
Winner of one of his 5 starts and currently rated 90. Unplaced in the Group 3 Greenham Stakes at Newbury (7f) in April and in a handicap at Newmarket (1m) this month off a mark of 92.
"He has been gelded and will hopefully head to the Britannia Handicap at Royal Ascot."
b f Makfi - Katimont
Winner of her only start at Newcastle in November when beating Gymnaste a head.
"She is a lovely filly who needs to get her toe in the ground and she might run in the Musidora or the Newbury Oaks Trial."
b c Kodiac - She Basic
Promise in both starts and third, beaten two and a quarter lengths, to Yogi's Girl in the Lily Agnes Stakes at Chester (5f) last week.
"She ran well in the Lily Agnes and should soon be losing his maiden tag."
b f Excelebration - Knapton Hill
"She is one of the sharpest of the fillies and should be out soon."
b f Reckless Abandon - Akmatova
"She is a nice filly who is another one of our sharp ones."
NEVER BACK DOWN
b c Kodiac - Steer By The Stars
Winner of one of his 2 starts scoring by a neck from Haddaf at Leicester (5f) in April.
"We like him and he run this weekend."
ARCHITECTURE - runner-up in the Investec and Darley Oaks last season and won't be seen out until Autumn but worth the wait.
CRIMEAN TATAR - progressive sort who can climb much higher.
GALILEO GOLD - stable star whose season kicks off in the Lockinge Stakes at Newbury on Saturday and can gain more Group 1 successes this season.
HOME OF THE BRAVE - stable stalwart who is ideally suited by seven furlongs and looks set for another bright season.
FIBONACCI - ready-made maiden winner who can progress well beyond that level.
MANCHEGO - hadn't come to himself in time to contest a Derby Trial but one to keep on the right side of during the coming months.