Glen Shiel will be the first leg of what could be a famous Group One double attempt this weekend for owners Hambleton Racing, as he goes for gold in the Darley July Cup.
With his Archie Watson-trained stablemate Mehmento due to contest the Prix Jean Prat at Deauville on Sunday, the syndicate members are certainly getting value for money.
In Glen Shiel’s case he arguably sets the standard at Newmarket on Saturday, having won on Champions Day last year and finished a narrow second in the Diamond Jubilee at Royal Ascot.
“That was him right back at his best and I think he stripped a good deal fitter for his run in Ireland,” said Hambleton’s Simon Turner.
“He’s in great form at home, but obviously it looks a really good renewal this year.
“He’ll be there to do his best and hopefully run well. Needless to say we wouldn’t be too upset if we saw a lot of the possible rain fall, but Archie is adamant that he doesn’t need desperate ground to run very well.
“It’s going to be a big field and with the three-year-olds coming in it does look a really strong race, so it will be interesting to see how the younger ones match up against their elders.
“What we do know is that if it does rain it won’t affect us, whereas some of them might not be at their best.”
Mehmento fared less well at Ascot when beaten in the Jersey Stakes – but had previously won a Listed race at Epsom, together with finishing second in the Greenham at Newbury.
“I suspect we’ll run Mehmento in France in the Prix Jean Prat over seven furlongs. I think it’s the plan,” said Turner.
“He does have other options, but at this moment Archie is leaning towards France.
“It’s an amazing weekend for us with two Group One runners – it’s what it’s all about.”