Asymmetric is likely to have another crack at the Prix Morny winner Perfect Power in the Juddmonte Middle Park Stakes at Newmarket on September 25.
Alan King’s juvenile headed to France with high hopes following his victory at Goodwood in the Richmond Stakes and ran yet another creditable race in finishing third.
The Showcasing colt travelled powerfully for Martin Harley and found himself in front inside the final furlong but had no answer to Richard Fahey’s Perfect Power and Andre Fabre’s Trident.
“It was a decent run, really,” said King.
“We were very happy with him and he ran his race. He should be back Monday evening and all went well really.
“I think the plan is to head to the Middle Park, where we’ll probably meet the winner again so we’ll have another go.
“I know it is slightly the same for all of them, but I do think we’d appreciate slightly better ground than we had on Sunday. He maybe just didn’t pick up as he can.
“It looked a hugely competitive renewal yesterday and we were pleased with him.”
King had hoped to run his star stayer Trueshan in the Lonsdale Cup at York last week but drying ground put paid to that.
“It was a shame he couldn’t run, but I think we’ll look at the Doncaster Cup now and head there – ground permitting,” he said.
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Asymmetric showed a smart turn of foot to win the Unibet Richmond Stakes and cap a fine Goodwood meeting for Alan King.
Cheltenham Festival-winning trainer King – who sent out his first Group One winner earlier in the week when Trueshan landed the Goodwood Cup – saw Asymmetric gain compensation for his narrow second in the July Stakes at Newmarket.
As the Group Two field approached the furlong marker there was just enough room for the Martin Harley-ridden 11-4 favourite to squeeze between Khunan and Gis A Sub, and once in the clear he shot to the front.
The race was not over, however, as Super Sprint victor Gubbass was challenging widest of all, but the unlucky story of the race looked to be Norfolk winner Perfect Power.
Paul Hanagan dropped him out last in the early stages and everywhere he went he found the door closed, finishing full of running.
Asymmetric ultimately had half a length in hand of Khunan, with Gubbass a nose back in third and a neck and the same to Ebro River and Perfect Power.
King said: “I hoped and thought he would run very well today, but I wasn’t thinking he had to win this.
“He has an absolutely wonderful temperament, he’s horizontal, he’s so laid back.
“He has a pretty lethal turn of foot when he does go, they looked to go pretty steady early and we always take a lead and then drop back and they probably weren’t going strong enough.
“Martin was very happy with him, he said he was always going to drop in and have one crack at him, which we’ve done.
“He’s not the biggest, I think he’s just that little bit sharper for the July Stakes.
“He does nothing at home, he eats and sleeps and you just have to give him the odd squeeze in a morning to make sure all is good.
“He does go on soft, but we’ve always said he’s a much better horse on top of the ground.”
On plans, King said: “He’s in the Gimcrack, he is entered in the Group One (Prix Morny) in France, we’ll see what the team want to do.”
Richard Hannon said of Gubbass: “It was another step forward, though I felt we were a little bit unlucky in running.
“He’s proving a Trojan for the owners and he’s pencilled in for either the Gimcrack or the Morny next.”
Of Khunan and Perfect Power, trainer Richard Fahey said: “Things didn’t go right for Perfect Power, but it was the opposite for Khunan, who got a lovely run up the rail and I think he’s a six-furlong horse.
“Perfect Power hasn’t had a hard race today, in fact I’ve never seen one with a lesser blow. He’ll go for the Morny in three weeks’ time. It will hopefully be better ground – the faster the better.”
For winning jockey Harley, meanwhile, Asymmetric’s success was a morale boost only hours after he had been handed a forthcoming suspension for previous whip offences.
At a British Horseracing Authority referral hearing, he was suspended for 18 days – six of them deferred for seven weeks – under the totting-up procedure following his ride on runner-up Third Kingdom at Newcastle on July 24.
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Fresh from his first Group One winner on the Flat with Trueshan, Alan King is chasing more Pattern-race glory as Asymmetric lines up in the Unibet Richmond Stakes at Goodwood.
Winner of his first two starts at Goodwood and Newmarket, he returned to HQ for the Group Two July Stakes last time out, just failing by a head to catch Lusail.
While the first day of Goodwood took place on testing ground, it is continuing to dry out. However, there are showers forecast and King is hoping they continue to miss the course.
“We’ve declared and we’ll see how things pan out,” said King.
“He has handled good to soft ground and he showed he was pretty smart in the July Stakes.
“Whether he wants heavy ground, I’m not sure.”
Royal Ascot winner Perfect Power must shoulder a 3lb penalty.
Richard Fahey’s Ardad colt got home by a head in the Norfolk Stakes from Go Bears Go, who franked the form in no uncertain terms when winning the Railway Stakes next time out.
“I’ve ridden him at home since Ascot and he’s in great form,” said former champion jockey Paul Hanagan who is back on board.
“He might have to race on different ground, but no one knows how he’ll go on it until he tries.”
Fahey also runs Khunan, ridden by Hollie Doyle, who was just over a length behind his stablemate at Ascot.
Richard Hannon’s Gubbass defied inexperience to win the Weatherbys Super Sprint at Newbury when last seen.
He has plenty to find on the figures, but remains an unexposed colt.
Hugo Palmer’s Ebro River is undoubtedly talented, as he showed when winning the National Stakes at Sandown – despite showing wayward tendencies.
Since then, however, they have prevented him from showing his true ability at Ascot and Newmarket, where he was behind Asymmetric.
Clive Cox’s Caturra, winner of the Rose Bowl at Newbury recently, and Kevin Ryan’s Gis A Sub complete the seven-runner field.
Charlie Appleby is looking to continue his domination of the three-year-old mile-and-a-half division with Yibir in the John Pearce Racing Gordon Stakes.
With Adayar winning the Derby and King George and Hurricane Lane successful in the Irish Derby and Grand Prix de Paris, Appleby has a very good line into what it takes to win these races.
Yibir advertised his credentials when winning the Bahrain Trophy at Newmarket, and class horses like Crystal Ocean, Ulysses and Highland Reel have won the Gordon Stakes recently.
“We were delighted to see Yibir get his head back in front in the Bahrain Trophy, when he travelled and stayed very well,” Appleby told www.godolphin.com
“He also ran a decent race to finish second to Lone Eagle at Goodwood earlier in the season and a repeat of his last couple of runs should make him very competitive.”
His main rival may well be Aidan O’Brien’s Wordsworth, behind Hurricane Lane the last twice and second at Royal Ascot.
The likes of Derby fifth Third Realm, O’Brien’s Sir Lucan and Johnny Murtagh’s Ottoman Emperor all hold claims.
“I don’t think you can readily rule out any of these, so it’s a competitive Group Three, albeit one lacking a stand-out,” Ryan Moore told Betfair.
“That said, I think my mount Wordsworth is the one to beat in here, even if Sir Lucan got the better of him the last time they met at Navan back in May.
“But Wordsworth has clearly improved since then, being placed in Group One company on his last two starts, and his Grand Prix de Paris second last time came in testing ground. Yes, looking at the race, I do think he is the most likely winner.”
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