Tag Archive for: Giavellotto

Botti charting direct Irish Leger route with Giavellotto

Giavellotto will head straight to the Irish St Leger after storming home to win the Princess of Wales’s Stakes at Newmarket last week.

The chestnut’s season started early in the year, with his return to action coming in February as he contested the Red Sea Turf Handicap in Riyadh, finishing behind Tower Of London when beaten just a length in a field of 14.

The same horse was the winner when the two met at Meydan in March to contest the Dubai Gold Cup, with Giavellotto fifth and beaten three and three-quarter lengths for trainer Marco Botti.

In May he then turned his attentions to the British scene and headed to York to retain his title in the Yorkshire Cup, a Group Two over a mile and six furlongs.

He beat Vauban there to prevail again, after which he demonstrated his versatility when dropping down in trip to a mile and a half at Newmarket and taking the Princess of Wales’s by three and a quarter lengths.

The July Festival 2024 – Ladies Day – Newmarket Racecourse
Giavellotto winning the Princess Of Wales’s Stakes (David Davies/PA)

The Irish St Leger was mentioned in the immediate aftermath of the race and Botti has confirmed the five-year-old will head straight there to allow him an easier time through the peak of the summer.

“He’s come out of his race bouncing, fresh and well,” the trainer said.

“Obviously the race hasn’t taken much out of him, the plan is now to go to the Irish St Leger.

“We’ve got a little bit of time but we know he’s a horse who always runs well fresh so the two-month gap is not going to be a disadvantage.

“Now we just have to hope that when we get there it is decent ground instead of heavy ground.

“He takes his races really well but he did start early in the season, we always had the plan of the Irish St Leger but we thought we’d take it step by step.

“Physically he is much stronger this year than he has ever been before, he’s just thickened out and his neck is about double the size it was last year.

“Even his weight is about 10 kilos heavier than it was last year, so he’s definitely matured physically.

“Mentally he is stronger too, he really enjoys his races and he takes it so well. He’s been abroad twice this year and it doesn’t seem to faze him, his head is in the right place.”



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Giavellotto powers home for smart Princess of Wales’s success

Dual Yorkshire Cup hero Giavellotto bagged another big prize in the form of the Princess of Wales’s Stakes at Newmarket.

Having successfully defended his crown on the Knavesmire in May, Marco Botti’s star stayer had to shoulder a 3lb penalty when dropping down to a mile and a half in his bid for back-to-back Group Two wins under Oisin Murphy.

Six runners went to post and from the home turn the field split in two, with Giavellotto tracking the Juddmonte-owned pair of Arrest and Time Lock down the centre of the track, while 11-10 favourite Hamish sat in the wing mirrors of Outbox and Maxi Boy closer to the stands’ rail.

While the usually consistent Coronation Cup runner-up Hamish was in obvious trouble with over a quarter of a mile still to race and faded into fourth, 100-30 chance Giavellotto moved menacingly towards the front passing the final furlong marker and found plenty once asked for maximum effort to beat the gallant Arrest by three and a quarter lengths.

Ground permitting, Giavellotto will now bid to secure a first win at Group One level in the Irish St Leger at the Curragh on September 15.

Botti said: “He showed he is not short of speed, especially on a stiff course. There was a genuine pace and we were a little bit concerned about the ground, but I think it has just about dried out enough to be on the soft side of good and it was a nice performance.

“Last year we were campaigning him at two miles and we went to Goodwood. We always felt he stayed well but it was stretching him over that trip. At the same time he has looked a stronger horse this year and we thought he probably has more speed than he did last year.

“Dropping back to a mile and a half was never really a concern I was always confident he would show his best today.

“He started off very early and went to Saudi Arabia and then Dubai, he has been on the go for a while but he enjoys the travelling and takes his work very well. We tend to space his races out a little bit, but at the same time he has definitely matured mentally since last year.

“I would say he is quite versatile, he has won on really fast ground and today he handled a little bit of cut in the ground. As long as it is not too soft, I think he is fine.

“He will go to the Irish St Leger and hopefully we get our ground – obviously it is a time of the year where it could go very soft. That has always been the plan and this was a stepping stone.

“Last year it was good to firm and let’s hope we are lucky.”



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Botti eyes Irish mission for Giavellotto after Newmarket test

Marco Botti views the Princess of Wales’s Stakes at Newmarket on Thursday as the perfect stepping stone towards the Irish St Leger for Giavellotto.

The five-year-old entire won his second Yorkshire Cup on his most recent outing in May and, as something of a one-mile-six-furlong specialist, the Curragh Group One emerged as his main priority.

Given he showed a smart turn of foot at York, Botti has been tempted to drop back to a mile and a half on the July Course and provided conditions do not deteriorate further, he is happy to roll the dice.

“We’ve had quite a bit of rain, but at the moment today (Wednesday) looks dry and he’s not a horse who can’t run on good to soft or ground on the easy side of good,” said the Newmarket-based Italian.

“We don’t want it too soft, but at the moment the plan is to let him take his chance, especially as he is coming back to a mile and a half.

“It’s not like he won’t handle easy ground. Last year, when he ran in the Goodwood Cup (finished fifth), the ground got a little bit soft and just over two miles it found him out.

“Over a mile and a half, I think we’ll still run unless it gets very soft. He has an entry in Ireland next week (Curragh Cup), but ideally we wanted to avoid that.”

Trainer Marco Botti after winning the Yorkshire Cup with Giavellotto
Trainer Marco Botti after winning the Yorkshire Cup with Giavellotto (Mike Egerton/PA)

Botti went on: “He’s won on the July course before and it is quite a stiff mile and a half, which is why we felt we could drop back in trip there.

“We just thought this looked a nice race for him before the Irish St Leger, if all goes to plan.

“We want to just campaign him at around a mile and six this year, last year we took him to Goodwood and York over two miles, but we do feel it just stretches him and his optimum is a mile and three-quarters, which is the Irish St Leger.

“His York form looks good, Vauban ran well in the Gold Cup, he’s a stronger horse this year. He ran well in Saudi, we freshened him up and then he went to Dubai and ran well again.

“He’s still an entire. He used to run in a hood but he’s grown up a lot and is a mature five-year-old now. When he was three, he used to sweat up a lot before his races but he doesn’t do that now.”

Hamish is very hard to beat if the mud is flying
Hamish is very hard to beat if the mud is flying (Andrew Matthews/PA)

One who would love even more rain to fall is William Haggas’ grand campaigner Hamish.

He arguably ran a career best last time out in the Coronation Cup when second to Luxembourg.

“He ran a very good race, he kept going and it was generally noted that Ryan (Moore, on Luxembourg) was exceptional that day. Everyone knew he was going to do that (make all) and we couldn’t quite peg him back,” Haggas told Sky Sports Racing.

“Tom (Marquand) said he has never been round Tattenham Corner quite as fast as he did that day and the horse plugged on very well, we were thrilled to bits.

“It’s the same old team we’ve been running against in the past. Arrest is a very good horse, especially with a bit of cut in the ground, but we love that as well.

“We need lots of rain and if it comes it will be interesting, if it doesn’t and it dries up to good or quicker, he won’t run.”

This time Moore is on Harry Charlton’s Time Lock, who was supplemented for the Coronation Cup but failed to give her true running and she was eased once beaten.

“I am not sure why she didn’t run her race in the Coronation Cup last time,” Moore told Betfair.

“Maybe it was the track, maybe it was the first-time cheekpieces that are left off here, or maybe she simply had an off-day against Group One horses.

“If she returns to the form of her Group Three win for me last season, then she has a chance, but Hamish is probably the one to beat after the rain that landed earlier in the week.”

Last year’s St Leger runner-up Arrest, Outbox and Maxi King complete the field.



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Botti eyeing Newmarket outing for Giavellotto

Marco Botti could look towards Newmarket’s July meeting before pointing Giavellotto at the Irish St Leger, following his exploits in winning back-to-back Yorkshire Cups on the Knavesmire.

The 7-2 shot shook off the challenge of Vauban and Tower Of London in the hands of Oisin Murphy to come home a four-and-three-quarter-length victor, becoming only the third horse to win the race in successive years.

Botti is reluctant to step him up in trip and believes the Gold Cup at Royal Ascot is too far for the son of Mastercraftsman.

Marco Botti is not keen to run xx over two miles
Marco Botti is not keen to run Giavellotto over two miles (Mike Egerton/PA)

Instead his primary target will be the Irish Leger at the Curragh over his favoured one-mile-six-furlong trip in September, provided the ground is to his liking.

Prior to that he will target a run in the Princess of Wales’s Stakes on July 11 at Newmarket to keep on track.

Botti said: “He’s good. He’s taken the race well.

“He seems in good form obviously. We’ll keep him ticking over for a week/10 days, then we’ll see where he is. He’s definitely taken the race quite well.

“We won’t go to Ascot. The Irish St Leger is very much the race we would like to run in, if the ground is not going to be too soft.

“Between the St Leger and now we were thinking that we don’t want to run over two miles.

“I will have to finalise with the owners, but we want to stay at a mile and six.

Giavellotto could target a hat-trick in 2025
Giavellotto could target a hat-trick in 2025 (Mike Egerton/PA)

“There isn’t very much at the moment but we’re thinking about the Princess of Wales’s, which is a Group Two at Newmarket in July Cup week. That could be just the race to keep him fresh for the Irish St Leger.”

The Newmarket handler has not ruled out taking the five-year-old back for an attempt to complete a hat-trick in the Yorkshire Cup next season.

Botti added: “It would be nice (to go for the Yorkshire Cup hat-trick).

“Obviously it’s a long time to think about the next season, but I think it would be wonderful for the horse to go back and win it for a third time.”



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Giavellotto defends Yorkshire Cup crown in style

Giavellotto dominated his rivals to make it back-to-back wins in the Boodles Yorkshire Cup.

Six runners went to post for the Group Two feature on day three of York’s Dante Festival, with Tower Of London the 7-4 favourite to provide Aidan O’Brien with a first victory in the race following lucrative winter triumphs in Saudi Arabia and Dubai.

The presence of the Willie Mullins-trained Vauban, a top-class hurdler turned quality Flat horse, added further Irish interest, but neither were able to lay a glove on Marco Botti’s defending champion.

Giavellotto, who had finished behind Tower Of London on both of his starts in the Middle East earlier in the year, was a 7-2 shot in the hands of Oisin Murphy, who cut a confident figure in the saddle when looming ominously alongside Vauban and William Buick as the race began in earnest.

The three-times champion jockey had a nonchalant look over his shoulder for non-existent dangers with a furlong still to run and with Tower Of London unable to pick up, Giavellotto put real daylight between himself and his rivals late on, passing the post with four and three-quarter lengths in hand.

Connections of Vauban will doubtless be satisfied with his performance on what was his first competitive outing since failing to fire in the Melbourne Cup in November, but Tower Of London was bitterly disappointing, finishing a well-beaten fifth under Ryan Moore.

Giavellotto bypassed Royal Ascot last year and he is not entered in the Gold Cup this term either, with Botti feeling the two-and-a-half-mile trip is too far for his charge.

Oisin Murphy salutes the York crowd
Oisin Murphy salutes the York crowd (Mike Egerton/PA)

He said: “He loves the track, fortunately, he always shows his best form at York. Earlier in the week I thought the ground might be a problem because we know he acts on fast ground best and the forecast didn’t look great, but we’ve been lucky with the rain.

“The race went to plan, he got into a nice rhythm and while he got to the front a little sooner than we wanted, he galloped all the way to the line.

“It’s good to be back and it’s a race that suits him, the track is perfect. We’ve tried several times over two miles and while I’m not saying he doesn’t stay, because he has run well a few times, but it does stretch him. The Gold Cup trip is too far for him.

“I’ll need to discuss with the owners but the plan was not to go to Ascot. The Irish St Leger I know is in September and the ground could be softer, but it was a race we considered last year and we didn’t go but I would say that could be his target. I doubt we’ll go to Ascot.

“He put it to bed very easily today but the track suits him well and Oisin gave him a great ride, he was in a lovely rhythm and he picked up well.

“I was a bit shocked he was in front so early, he made them look slow today.

“We have been thinking of running him over a mile and a half eventually, we wouldn’t rule it out. Between a mile and a half and two miles, I think I’d rather run him over shorter than further. He’s definitely got stronger.”

Vauban pleased William Buick in second
Vauban pleased William Buick in second (John Walton/PA)

Vauban is entered for the Gold Cup and Buick felt it was a good starting point for the campaign.

He said: “I was delighted, they’ll be very happy with that. He’s going to get further and he felt he was going to improve for that, so there are plenty of positives to take from it.”

Ascot is the next port of call for Gregory, who won the Queen’s Vase at the meeting last year.

Joint-trainer John Gosden said: “I really liked the way he got his second wind and stayed on again. The plan is to go straight to the Gold Cup. He’ll enjoy the distance.”



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Melbourne Cup off the agenda for Giavellotto

Giavellotto will head to Qipco Champions Day or be put away until next season after connections shelved the idea of having a tilt at this year’s Melbourne Cup.

A narrow winner of the Yorkshire Cup in the spring, Marco Botti’s stable star has since finished fifth in the Goodwood Cup and third in the Lonsdale Cup back at York last month.

Given Giavellotto’s preference for a sound surface, a trip to Australia appeared an attractive proposition – but with the stringent veterinary checks required to contest the Flemington showpiece seemingly a factor, he will not contest the ‘race that stops a nation’ in early November.

“He’s in good form and has come out of the race at York in fine shape, but we’re not going to Australia,” said Botti.

“There were a few niggling problems and it’s not going to happen this year unfortunately. He’s fine, but there were concerns we might get him there and he wouldn’t be able to run or whatever, so we just decided bypass it for this year.

“Hopefully next year if we still have him and everything is going well then we can think about it as the Melbourne Cup is a race the owners would love to go for, and the race and the track would suit him as he seems to go on left-handed tracks.”

With the Melbourne Cup ruled out, the only viable option left for Giavellotto this season is the Qipco British Champions Long Distance Cup on October 21, but the prospect of demanding conditions at Ascot is an obvious concern.

“We’ll keep an eye on the weather as he will only go to Ascot if the ground is not too soft. Good to soft is fine, but he wouldn’t want to run on anything softer than that,” Botti added.

“If he doesn’t go to Ascot we’ll just put him away for the winter.

“We haven’t discussed plans for next year with the owners yet. I wouldn’t rule out going back to Dubai World Cup night for the Gold Cup, but let’s see how he winters and how he is after a nice break.”



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Giavellotto enters Melbourne Cup equation

Marco Botti has expressed his pride in Giavellotto’s brave run in defeat at York, with connections now mulling over a possible tilt at the Melbourne Cup later in the year.

The Yorkshire Cup champion was returning to the scene of his finest hour when lining-up in the Lonsdale Cup and lost little in defeat as he fought out the finish with the Ascot Gold Cup first and second, Courage Mon Ami and Coltrane.

It was Andrew Balding’s consistent performer who came out on top on the Knavesmire, with Botti’s four-year-old giving way to the stronger stayers late in the day as he finished two lengths adrift in third.

However, the Newmarket-based handler was far from despondent as his long distance star showed his qualities once again.

Botti said: “It was a good run and he was beaten by two proper stayers who finished first and second in the Gold Cup. They are the best stayers around and maybe they just outstayed him.

“I always thought one-mile-six would be Giavellotto’s optimum trip. He gets the two miles but when he runs against the proper stayers, maybe the final furlong gets a bit hard work.

“It was no disgrace to finish third behind two proper stayers and he is a horse who has been consistent and tries his best all the time. For sure he handles York quite well.”

Giavellotto holds entries in the Comer Group International Irish St Leger (Curragh, September 10) and the Qipco British Champions Long Distance Cup at Ascot on British Champions Day (October 21).

However, Botti is hoping to get the go-ahead from owner Francesca Franchini of Scuderia La Tesa Limited to travel to Australia for the ‘race that stops a nation’ at Flemington on November 7.

“He’s a horse who wouldn’t want the ground too soft. He is in the Irish St Leger, but we thought by then you don’t know what the ground will be,” explained Botti.

“We are still discussing about the Melbourne Cup and I’m pretty sure we will enter him and then finalise the plans. Otherwise in England it will just be Champions Day as the only goal left for him.”

He went on: “I would be in favour (of going for the Melbourne Cup). The fact he went to Dubai and is a horse who travels well and I also think the track will suit him – it is similar to York, a left-handed track.

“I think he will get in. He won a Group Two so he should make the cut for the Melbourne Cup, but then it is up to the owners as it is quite an expensive trip to take on and as we know the rules are quite strict before the race. The vetting can be tricky but he is a sound horse.

“If we take that route, hopefully all goes to plan, and I would be in favour if the owner wanted to go.”

If a trip to the Southern Hemisphere doesn’t come to fruition, Botti hopes to explore other options overseas for Giavellotto during his five-year-old campaign as he envisages his stable star improving further with experience.

“He’s a nice horse to still have in the yard and we have been able to win a Group Two this year,” he added.

“He’s a nice horse to have and maybe campaign abroad next year, whether that be Dubai or Saudi Arabia. We’re not planning too far ahead but he’s definitely a horse who has scope to get even better.”



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Lonsdale Cup next consideration for Giavellotto

Marco Botti is eyeing a return to York for Giavellotto following his fifth-placed finish in last week’s Goodwood Cup.

A narrow winner of the Yorkshire Cup on the Knavesmire in May, the four-year-old sidestepped the Gold Cup at Royal Ascot to be saved for the second half of the season.

He made his return to action on the Sussex Downs and while unable to land a blow on the front-running Quickthorn, he was beaten just half a length for second in a blanket finish for minor honours.

While frustrated with how the Group One contest was run as Quickthorn built up a big lead the chasing pack were ultimately unable to bridge, Botti was pleased with his star stayer’s performance.

He said: “It was a funny race to watch, obviously. The winner is a good horse and with that margin of a lead he was never going to be caught.

“I thought our horse ran his race and ran well, it’s just a shame we were beaten a short head, a short head and a neck for second. To finish fifth just leaves a bit of a bitter taste in the mouth.

“How the race was run was a bit disappointing, but credit to the winner. He’s a good horse and he has done that before, which is why I was surprised they let him take a big advantage.

“I think our horse he proved he’s up to that level and probably the ground was a little bit on the slow side for him – he’d definitely prefer better ground.”

Giavellotto is entered for the two-mile Lonsdale Cup at York on August 25 and the Irish St Leger over a mile and three-quarters at the Curragh on September 10.

And while Botti feels the shorter distance may be more suitable for his charge, Botti is leaning towards the Lonsdale due to likelihood of getting his favoured conditions.

“I think we have to say two miles is not an issue, but his optimum trip is probably a mile and six furlongs,” he added.

“He stays (two miles), he relaxes well and he enjoys the track at York, so we’ll see how he comes out and works in the next 10 days, but York has to be considered.

“The worry with the Irish St Leger would be if the ground went quite soft or heavy as that is not what he wants. I’m sure in terms of giving him a bit more time it wouldn’t be against him, but I don’t think I would run him on very testing ground.

“At the moment we’re waiting to see how he is, but we’re planning to go to York.”



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Botti happy to chart direct Goodwood route with Giavellotto

Marco Botti is banking on his decision to skip the Gold Cup at Ascot paying dividends in the Al Shaqab Goodwood Cup for Giavellotto.

Promoted to third in the St Leger behind Eldar Eldarov last season, he beat that rival in the Yorkshire Cup last month, admittedly in receipt of 5lb.

Botti decided against going to Ascot feeling two miles is as far as his stable star wants to go, and an entry in the Irish St Leger suggests he may even be coming back in trip later in the season.

“Giavellotto is very well and the plan was always to go straight for the Goodwood Cup,” said Botti.

“The horse won well at York and then we were keen to give him more time rather than stepping up to the Gold Cup, as we think two miles is his best trip.

“He has matured a lot mentally from three to four and we expected him to improve this season, as most stayers do with age. He used to wear a hood and get quite warm before his races but that was not the case in the Yorkshire Cup.

“We were disappointed on his first run back in the Dubai Gold Cup but he was drawn wide and the race did not pan out for him, so it was nice to see him show what we thought he was capable of at York.

“You never know until you run at Goodwood whether they will handle the track, but he seems a well-balanced horse and the long straight will be in his favour.”

Courage Mon Ami gave Frankie Dettori a ninth Gold Cup win at Ascot
Courage Mon Ami gave Frankie Dettori a ninth Gold Cup win at Ascot (David Davies/PA)

Giavellotto is one of 26 entries for the Goodwood race, which include the Gold Cup winner Courage Mon Ami.

His John and Thady Gosden-trained stablemate and Queen’s Vase winner Gregory, who is so far unbeaten, is another potential rival.

Subjectivist, Coltrane, Eldar Eldarov and Emily Dickinson are others given the option.



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Goodwood Cup goal for Giavellotto

Marco Botti’s Yorkshire Cup hero Giavellotto will seek further staying riches later this summer with the Al Shaqab Goodwood Cup highlighted as his next target.

The four-year-old rose rapidly through the handicap ranks to earn a crack at the St Leger last season and acquitted himself with real credit in that staying Classic to pass the post in fourth, promoted to third following interference.

Although disappointing in the Dubai Gold Cup in his first outing of the year, he thrived when stepping onto the Knavesmire for the Yorkshire Cup, highlighting himself as a top-quality operator to reverse Doncaster form with Eldar Eldarov.

Despite that race often serving as a trial for the Gold Cup, Giavellotto does not hold an entry for the Royal Ascot feature and although supplementing did briefly come under discussion, connections have decided to stick with their original plan to swerve the summer showpiece.

The Mastercraftsman colt will now be primed for action on the Sussex Downs on August 1 where he will try to land his first Group One prize.

“He’s come out of the race at York well and we’re pleased with him, he seems in good form,” said Botti.

“We had a good catch up with the owners and they decided they don’t want to go for the Gold Cup at Ascot and we will stick to the original plan.

Marco Botti after winning the Boodles Yorkshire Cup Stakes with Giavellotto
Marco Botti after winning the Boodles Yorkshire Cup Stakes with Giavellotto (Mike Egerton/PA)

“Even before he won at York, I felt the extra few furlongs of the Gold Cup wasn’t going to help him run his best race and we always felt it wasn’t going to be the race we were aiming for.

“We’re going to skip it and aim at the Goodwood Cup on August 1.”

Giavellotto holds an entry in the Comer Group International Irish St Leger at the Curragh on September 10 and that could prove a further port of call with Botti plotting a potential path to the Melbourne Cup at Flemington in November.

He continued: “If he does well at Goodwood then we have entered him in the Irish St Leger on September 10 and then we if we go any further, we haven’t ruled out the Melbourne Cup.

“It is not a firm plan, but we will consider it and make a decision as we go along.

“He definitely stays the two miles. I felt the one-mile-six at York was always the race we wanted to go for as I felt the track and trip was tailor-made for him and I’m glad he showed what he was capable of.

“He was probably unlucky in the St Leger. He didn’t have a clear run and in Dubai it just didn’t happen for him, but he showed that in the right conditions, on the right track he is quite a nice stayer.”



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Giavellotto hits the target to put Botti back in the limelight

Giavellotto is the Italian word for javelin, a piece of equipment that can travel both far and fast when handled with precision and power.

A javelin would traditionally arc in a perfect straight line too, a skill Marco Botti’s colt will learn in time now the speed and stamina elements of his craft are well proven.

Giavellotto is a son of Mastercraftsman out of a Galileo mare named Gerika, a chestnut like her son who ran in the same silks at Italian tracks like Capannelle and San Siro.

Of her seven runners to take to the track Giavellotto looked like the gifted child even before today, scoring by five lengths in a Newmarket handicap and then outrunning 28-1 odds with a gallant performance behind Eldar Eldarov in the St Leger, crossing the line in fourth but being promoted to third.

He ended last season with another smart performance, this time finishing second to Kevin Philippart De Foy’s useful El Habeeb in the Noel Murless Stakes at Ascot.

Winning trainer Marco Botti after the Boodles Yorkshire Cup
Winning trainer Marco Botti after the Boodles Yorkshire Cup (Mike Egerton/PA)

A winter holiday in Meydan then resulted in a luckless outing in the Dubai Gold Cup, where he could not overcome a wide draw and eventually came home down the field as Broome came out on top.

The two horses met again on the Knavesmire for the Boodles Yorkshire Cup, and while Broome was the 9-4 joint-favourite alongside Meydan runner-up Siskany, Giavellotto was largely overlooked under Andrea Atzeni at odds of 14-1.

Throughout the course of the one-mile-six-furlong contest the colt did little to draw attention to himself as he travelled along in mid-division and most eyes focused on Eldar Eldarov, Broome and Quickthorn – the latter the reigning Lonsdale Cup champion.

As the race approached the final three furlongs, however, it was Giavellotto who was gaining ground as he began to leave his past rivals behind him at the furlong pole.

Then there was a wobble, and as the post approached Giavellotto began to search for the inside rail, hampering Quickthorn and running into the space Broome probably had in mind for his next few strides.

Botti’s charge crossed the line first and Eldar Eldarov, having challenged down the centre of the course, was second, but the sound of post-race celebrations were soon interrupted by the bing-bong chime that precedes a stewards’ inquiry.

It was a lengthy one too, and Botti crossed his fingers as he tended to Giavellotto before delivering a cautiously optimistic interview to the waiting television cameras.

Eventually the second chime sounded and the victory was confirmed, at which point the trainer embraced a sobbing Italian woman named Francesca Franchini, now the owner and breeder of a Yorkshire Cup hero.

“We were a bit nervous because you never know what could happen in the stewards’ room, but I’m delighted,” he said.

“We thought he would come here with a good chance, obviously the form of the St Leger was good form. In hindsight he was a bit unlucky with the interference and he didn’t have a clear run, but today he’s proven he’s up to this level.

“He stays well, he’s still a little immature and for a four-year-old he’s still quite babyish mentally.

“Before he ran in the St Leger he had only won a handicap in Newmarket, we always said we’d just bring him along and give him time to mature.

“He ran a big race in the St Leger and we took him to Dubai in March for the Gold Cup, but it didn’t really work out and here we are!”

The Yorkshire Cup often leads into the Gold Cup at Ascot but that will not be the case for Giavellotto, who does not hold an entry as Botti does not see the track being exactly to his liking.

He said: “He will just get better and better, we don’t know where we will go next yet. We’ve never felt Ascot will be the track for him, he’s a big horse and we don’t feel it will suit so we will be looking for other options.”

Of Scuderia La Tesa, Francini’s breeding operation, and the evident emotion of the success, he added: “It’s great for the owner, who bred the horse as well, I’m delighted.

“They’re from Milan, they actually lost the mare this year so the owner is quite emotional because it means a lot.

“It’s the first Group race they’ve won in England so she was quite emotional. It’s great for the yard, we’ve had a couple of quiet years and it’s great to be back with a nice horse.”

Nice horses are hard to come by and seem harder still to keep hold of, something Botti knows well as he has seen several prospects sold abroad over the last few seasons.

“Last year to the year before, we had horses like Tatsumaki, who was unbeaten and then sold to Hong Kong,” he said.

“We’ve always been in a situation where we’re on the market and we have to sell sometimes, they don’t come along very often these good horses.

“It’s great we’ve kept him and hopefully we’ll have some fun through the season – a Melbourne Cup would be nice!”



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Giavellotto crowned in Yorkshire Cup for Botti and Atzeni

Giavellotto turned the tables on his St Leger conqueror Eldar Eldarov to secure top honours in the Boodles Yorkshire Cup.

The Roger Varian-trained Eldar Eldarov was the Classic hero at Doncaster, a race in which Marco Botti’s Giavellotto passed the post in fourth but was later promoted to third after suffering interference.

In a twist on the Knavesmire, Giavellotto was the one causing interference, but following a stewards’ inquiry the placings remained unaltered in the one-mile-six-furlong feature.

Ninth behind the reopposing Broome in the Dubai Gold Cup at Meydan in March, the 14-1 chance quickened up smartly to grab the lead under Andrea Atzeni, but hung left under pressure, impeding both the long-time leader Quickthorn and Broome on the far side of the track.

In the meantime Eldar Eldarov, making his first appearance since the autumn, was building up a head of steam closer to stands rail and charged home to beaten just half a length, with Broome only a further length behind in third.

Botti said: “He came across a little bit in the last furlong, he didn’t interfere with the runner-up but Andrea said he was just idling a little bit once he hit the front. Last year he ran a huge race in the St Leger, he didn’t have much luck in Dubai with the wide draw, but we’ve always thought he was a very good stayer.

“He’s still very lightly raced. It was a good field with the St Leger winner and Broome in there, but I thought we would be here with a chance. I put a line through the race in Dubai, he was drawn in stall 15 and it just didn’t go to plan but we were confident he would run a good race.”

He added: “It’s very important, it’s been a couple of quiet years so to have a horse of this calibre is great. It’s great for the staff at home and for the owner, who bred the horse.”

Giavellotto after winning at York (
Giavellotto after winning at York (Molly Hunter/PA)

Varian, meanwhile, was as happy with Eldar Eldarov as Botti was with the winner.

“He’s run like he’s the best horse in the race. He’s given the winner 5lb and he’s given Broome 2lb, it was a really good run,” he said.

“It was a very good run with a view to the Gold Cup. That was over a mile and six furlongs and we’ve always felt that he would get the Gold Cup distance.

“We put a line through his run at Ascot in October, which was his first try beyond this trip, but it was heavy ground that day, which he won’t run on again.

“Every time he’s run over this trip he has looked like he is only getting going at the line and that is why we think the Gold Cup will suit him, so we’ll look forward to that. He’s very versatile regarding ground. He goes on anything really, he won’t run on heavy ground again, (but) apart from that he’s pretty versatile.

“It was a good trial for the Gold Cup. It was a shame he didn’t win, but I don’t think he lost anything in defeat. At the weights he’s run like the winner really.”

Hughie Morrison at York
Hughie Morrison at York (Mike Egerton/PA)

Of Quickthorn, Hughie Morrison said: “The interference definitely cost us third, but it’s a funny rule we have. It leaves a bit of a sour taste because it costs you £30,000. He’s run well, though. The jockey (Oisin Murphy) said he jumped good, he felt well and he’s a damn good horse.

“I just think maybe two miles around here suits him better because then there is two bends.

“He’s run up to his best, probably, other than the freak race he won over two miles here last year (Lonsdale Cup).

“He won’t go to Ascot, the way we ride him we feel he doesn’t get two and a half miles so we’ll discuss where we go. A mile and six is his minimum.

“He could go for the race he won last year (Group Two Prix Maurice de Nieuil). He could even go jumping! Someone has to take on Constitution Hill!”



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