Royal Crusade one to note following Newmarket debut

Appleby colt earns Guineas quotes

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Royal Crusade added his name to what is fast becoming a powerful-looking juvenile team being assembled by Charlie Appleby with a winning debut at Newmarket on Friday.

The Shamardal colt, who holds Group One entries in the Middle Park and Dewhurst Stakes, hit the target at the first time of asking, holding fellow debutant Hot Summer at bay by a neck in the British Stallion Studs EBF Novice Stakes.

Appleby said of the 5-6 winner: “It was very pleasing. We are not going to get away from it as his home work has been nice.

“We know the family and we were fortunate to have the mare in her racing career (Zibelina) and being by Shamardal you can’t go wrong.

“As William (Buick) said, he is a work in progress in respect that he was very green out there. He travelled for fun and there was nothing that could take him for long enough unfortunately.

“William said if he could have sat for a bit longer it would have helped him. He is a big, strong individual. We won’t rush him back. There are plenty of autumn targets there.”

Royal Crusade was introduced at 33-1 for next year’s Qipco 2000 Guineas by William Hill.

Powerful Breeze opened the door to a potential shot at bigger and better prizes after running out a decisive winner of the C J Murfitt Ltd Fillies’ Novice Stakes to initiate a double for jockey David Egan.

Trainer Hugo Palmer said of the 20-1 chance: “She is a filly that has come to hand very quickly, as three weeks ago she was not ready to run.

“She has no entries next to her name, that is because she only come forward so quickly recently.

“She is a nice filly that will be better next season. We will stick at seven for the moment.”

He added: “There are lots of Group Three and Listed races coming up and she will handle a bit of ease in the ground.”

Romola (5-4) followed up her facile victory in testing conditions at Nottingham seven days ago to complete Egan’s brace when accounting for Sandret by a nose in the Pantile Stud Handicap.

James Horton, assistant to winning trainer Sir Michael Stoute, said: “I think she just about got away with the ground today, rather than her handling it. I think the filly will definitely be better on soft ground in the autumn.

“If the race is there and you are 9lb well in you have got to have a go at it. There was no travelling and it was just down the road so we thought we would take our chance.”

Chris Wall has his team in good order and Dramatic Device (9-2) kept the bandwagon rolling when taking a step up to a mile and a half in his stride in the Andy Wright Memorial Handicap.

The Newmarket handler said: “He is a bit of a sweaty horse, but that’s just him. He is talented though and we thought he would take the step up to a mile and a half and he has proved that today.

“He is an improving horse and doesn’t mind fast ground. He had to make the running last time, but he was happy to have a lead today and he seemed better ridden that way.”

Royal Crusade one to note following Newmarket debut
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