Horse Racing News, 10th July 2017

Ulysses the Hero in Eclipse and Moore Joins the 2000 Club

It’s Stoute Again in the Eclipse… But Only Just

Named after an ancient hero, and bred for greatness, Saturday saw Sir Michael Stoute’s Ulysses finally deliver on his potential. The product of a dream breeding combination of Galileo and Light Shift, his three previous cracks in Group 1 company had resulted in defeat, first being beaten out of sight in the Epsom Derby and latterly twice bending to the iron will of Highland Reel.

Heading into the final furlong of this year’s Coral Eclipse, it looked to be a matter of “how far”, as the four year old absolutely cruised up on the outside. Richard Hannon’s Barney Roy however had other ideas, resulting in a titanic tussle in the final hundred yards. Ulysses looks the sort to do little in front, but despite the valiant late thrust of the Godolphin runner, he clung on here by a nostril.

The 2017 renewal of this contest will be remembered as true thriller which fully lived up to its billing as a clash of the generations. The three year old Barney Roy lost nothing in defeat here and proved beyond any doubt that he stays this trip well. Not all will remember this race with fondness however, particularly the connections of Cliffs Of Moher and Decorated Knight.

The well fancied duos chances were all but ended as the result of some pretty serious interference in the opening stages, which almost resulted in Cliffs Of Moher being sent over the fence. There will be other days for that pair though, and the incident shouldn’t take too much gloss of what was a tremendous renewal.

Magnificent Moore Reaches Milestone

He may have endured something of a nightmare in Saturday’s big race, but there is little doubt that on his overall body of work, Ryan Moore is just about the best in the business. Three times Champion Jockey, with eight British Classics, two wins in the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe and a Melbourne Cup victory to his name, Moore notched up his 2000th British flat winner last week, to further cement his place in history.

Of the current riders, only Frankie Dettori and Joe Fanning have recorded more wins. Still only 33 there is no doubt plenty more to come from Ryan, however he does have some way to go if he is to threaten Sir Gordon Richards astounding total of 4870 wins.

Newmarket Next as Action Continues

This week sees the summers next big meeting kick off with the always excellent Newmarket July Festival. Three days of top class action begins on Thursday, with a mix of Group races and competitive handicap action on offer. The undoubted highlight comes on the concluding Saturday with the 2017 edition of the July Cup. A rematch between Caravaggio and Harry Angel would be exiting enough, but when you also throw Limato and The Tin Man into the mix, this has the makings of being the most compelling sprint contest of the year to date. And then it’s not too long until Glorious Goodwood, which gets underway on 1st August!