Laurens all set for QEII challenge

Karl Burke’s superstar filly is added to Saturday’s field

  • Monday 15 October
  • News
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Laurens has been supplemented, as expected, for the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes at Ascot on Champions Day.

Karl Burke’s superstar proved her well-bring in an exercise gallop on Sunday, and owner John Dance stumped up the £70,000 fee.

She is due to be reunited with PJ McDonald, who has missed her victories in the Matron Stakes and Sun Chariot through injury.

John Gosden could switch Roaring Lion from the Champion Stakes if he feels the ground is too soft for him over 10 furlongs, while he has also left in Without Parole.

French challenger Recoletos has been a strong fancy for the race for some time – while William Haggas is looking forward to finally being able to run Addeybb, but he has also left the Lincoln winner in the Champion Stakes.

“He’s been left in the QEII and Champion Stakes. I want to go for the mile. He’s not at his best on fast ground – he’s much better on soft,” said Haggas.

“It jarred him up in the Lockinge, and it took a long time for him to come back. He’s been ready to run for six weeks without finding his right conditions.”

Lightning Spear, Hey Gaman, Expert Eye, Lord Glitters and Century Dream are all among the remaining possibles.

In the Qipco Long Distance Cup, Aidan O’Brien has supplemented Flag Of Honour – last seen winning the Irish St Leger.

He will take on Stradivarius, winner of the inaugural Weatherbys £1million Stayers Bonus. Only 10 remain in the Long Distance Cup.

Gosden’s colt, owned by Bjorn Nielson, was a little below his best when completing the final leg of the incentive at York but has been freshened up since.

“He’s in tremendous form and really benefited from having had a bit of time off. I’m absolutely thrilled with him. It was publicised that he and Cracksman worked together recently, and this will be his final race of the year,” said Gosden.

“He’s best on top of the ground, but he handles soft.”

In the Qipco Champions Sprint, Son Of Rest has been supplemented – meaning 17 are in the mix, including last year’s winner Librisa Breeze and 2016 hero The Tin Man.

Harry Angel will be aiming to break his Ascot hoodoo, while Sir Dancealot and Limato are possibles, but the latter must already be deemed a doubtful runner because of the likely soft ground.

Lah Ti Dar, whose exploits have already been overtaken by her brother Too Darn Hot – despite him being a year younger – has a chance to claim her own Group One in the Qipco Fillies & Mares Stakes.

Gosden could also run Coronet in a race where the confirmations are dominated by O’Brien – the Irishman holding eight of the 14. They include last year’s winner Hydrangea.

Andre Fabre’s Kitesurf and Luca Cumani’s God Given are among the dangers.

Flaming Spear is top weight in the Balmoral Handicap.

Laurens all set for QEII challenge

Ascot 15:15, 20 October 2018

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