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Yibir completes Breeders’ Cup hat-trick for Appleby and Buick

Yibir capped an incredible Breeders’ Cup for Charlie Appleby and William Buick when flying home late to pip Broome in the Turf.

Aidan O’Brien’s Broome, ridden by Irad Ortiz, looked to have put the race to bed with a decisive move turning into the short home straight, taking a couple of lengths out of the field.

Yibir had been settled at the rear by William Buick, who along with last year’s winner Tarnawa, had a posse of horses in front of him with just two furlongs to run.

But once Buick pulled the Great Voltiguer winner out into the home straight, Yibir hit his full stride and ran down Broome comfortably in the end.

Roger Varian’s Teona was not far back in third, with O’Brien’s Japan in fourth. Tarnawa found little in the finish and was well beaten.

Appleby and Buick won the Juvenile Turf with Modern Games on Friday and the Mile with Space Blues earlier on Saturday’s card.

Buick said: “Once I turned halfway down the back straight, I was in a better position. I followed Tarnawa but she was never going as well as I thought she would.

“It was the one race I didn’t know how to assess. Yibir is a complex character, as you saw last time he ran over here, I was just hoping he saved a bit for the finish.

“Halfway round the turn I could see Broome had gone, but my horse picked up in a way you rarely see. It was a great performance from a young, up and coming horse.”

Appleby said: “As you’ve seen he’s run some quite indifferent races this season, like at Goodwood, but then he ran well at York.

“The key was getting him to settle and Jamie Spencer did that at Belmont.

“It was a hard ride for William, he was taking him on but it all worked out.”

As well as saddling three winners, Appleby also had two withdrawn at the start over the course of the meeting and said: “It’s been a fantastic weekend, I can even take a couple home fresh!

“There were lots of emotions (on Friday) and I felt sorry for the crowd that winning tickets didn’t come off.

“I knew the right horse was left in the gate in Space Blues and Yibir was the icing on the cake – he’s been galloping with all our best middle-distance three-year-olds.

“Next year this horse brings experience to the table in middle-distance races. We won’t be taking anything to Hong Kong, they will all have well-earned vacations.”

O’Brien said of his three runners: “Broome ran a great race and we thought he was in good form. He was just a bit lazy in front, while Ryan (Moore on Japan) got chopped and Frankie (Dettori) said Bolshoi Ballet was too babyish.”

Varian was pleased with Teona’s effort and said: “David gave her a great ride.

“It’s not an ideal track for her, but she ran a race of real credit. She’s a lengthener and we had to angle out, and didn’t have the acceleration to put the race to bed.”

Tarnawa disappointed in her title defence
Tarnawa disappointed in her title defence (Niall Carson/PA)

Tarnawa was last seen when narrowly beaten in the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe at ParisLongchamp last month, going down by just three-quarters of a length in testing conditions.

Jockey Colin Keane felt that French outing may have left its mark as the mare came home 11th.

He said: “She ran flat. I think France last time on very soft ground took plenty out of her. She seemed fine after the race.”

Oisin Murphy secures third jockeys’ championship

Oisin Murphy admitted relief was his overriding emotion after he was crowed champion jockey for the third successive season on Qipco British Champions Day at Ascot.

The Killarney-born rider looked set for a comfortable defence of his title a few weeks ago, but a late charge from William Buick set up a thrilling finale.

Buick closed the gap to just one on a couple of occasions earlier in the week, but a double at Haydock on Friday meant Murphy started the final day with a decisive three-winner lead.

Buick struck early on Champions Day with Creative Force in the big sprint to give himself renewed hope – but defeat for Adayar in the Champion Stakes put paid to his gallant season-long pursuit of Murphy.

Murphy said: “I’m over the moon and thrilled to get it across the line. Thank you to my family and everyone – I’ve got a massive support group.

“The last week I’ve had a lot of people on my side. Frankie Dettori has been there every day making sure my spirits are up and I was riding off instinct as normal which is key.

“You need to make every ride count and I was running out of opportunities. I held it together thankfully in the end.”

However, it has not been entirely plain sailing for the 26-year-old, who just last week was forced to give up rides at Newmarket after failing a racecourse breathalyser test amid reports of an incident in a pub the previous night.

Murphy is also still sporting the scars of a nasty face injury suffered in a parade ring fall Salisbury last month.

Murphy added: “I think everyone knows that I am human and quite honest. But I need to do better and I don’t want any issues surrounding my career. Let’s just focus on riding winners and hopefully winning another jockeys’ championship.

“I’m 26-years-old so I think I will keep trying for a few more years.

“Horses are my life and I’m never happier than when I’m on the back of a horse. I’ve bought my showjumpers and they keep me busy too.

“Sheikh Fahad and Qatar Racing have a few horses to go to America for the Breeders’ Cup. There are lots of international races in Hong Kong and Japan coming up so I will be busy.

“William was getting a lot more support than I was in the last couple of weeks and the likes of Ed Walker, Hughie Morrison, Andrew Balding and Saeed bin Suroor have been amazing so thanks to them.”

His boss Sheikh Fahad of Qatar Racing remains fiercely loyal to Murphy, as does his racing manager David Redvers, although he admitted there are things the champion “will work hard to put right”.

He told Racing TV: “Oisin has really felt it this time, there’s no question about it. He felt it at the end of last season as well when he was over at the Breeders’ Cup and William was eating into his lead in dramatic fashion.

“It’s been a really high pressure and tense end to the season. Thank God it ends today and not at Doncaster in a few weeks’ time as that would drag it out even more.

“Oisin is a young man. We’ve known him since he was 17 and he’s still growing and developing as a man.

“Clearly there are things that have happened in recent times that he has regrets about and will work hard to put right.

“I have no doubt that when the pressure of Champions Day is out of the way and he can breathe and regroup, that there will be changes made to his lifestyle and he’s going to look very hard at that.

“Nobody can have any idea what it’s like being in this cauldron unless they’ve actually been there themselves.

“I spoke to Kevin Darley the other day and he said when he sat down at the end of his championship-winning season, he literally lost two days of his life he was so exhausted. He couldn’t even remember what happened in that time.

“William is going to be exhausted as well. Oisin is exhausted and puts himself under huge pressure.

“We all make mistakes. It’s been difficult and obviously it’s disappointing for everybody that the stories in the press have detracted from what is an absolutely unbelievable achievement – to win three championships on the bounce from such an early start.

“We’re incredibly proud of him. He’s very much part of our family and whatever help Oisin needs he’ll get.”

On his bid for a first tile, Buick said: “I gave it everything I had, I left nothing on the table and I didn’t quite make it.

“I had a lot great support all the way through, these last few days the support and well wishes I’ve had has been really overwhelming and I’m really grateful for that.

“My family and friends have been behind me the whole way, it’s a tough thing to do and you’ve got to be disciplined, you’ve got to work really hard.

“I’ve had some great support from trainers and owners all around and it’s a big ‘thank you’ to them because without the support it’s not possible.

“As hard work as it is, I’ve enjoyed it as well and I feel like it’s brought me on and now there’s still a lot of good races around the world before the end of the season.

“I’ll get the winter out of the way and re-group again for next year.”

His boss Charlie Appleby said: “He changed agents last year, Tony Hind has been sending him all around the country and I think it’s something William himself will say he’s enjoyed.

“It’s all very well riding these good horses at the big meetings, but he’s been mucking out at the smaller tracks and success breeds success – you can’t beat having winners.

“William riding more has given him more opportunity to ride more winners and we’ve seen a better rider as a result.

“He’s always been a rider at the top of his game, but there’s no doubt that now he’s riding so many different horses his style of riding is changing and he’s hungry.

“Win, lose or draw, he’s not going to walk away deflated after what he’s achieved this year. He’s got that character where he’ll go forward again next year and do the same, I’m sure.

“For me he’s a huge part of the team and the more winners he rides the happier I am!”

Creative Force powers to Champions Sprint success

Creative Force completed his progression from handicaps to the top level by taking the Qipco British Champions Sprint Stakes at Ascot in the hands of William Buick.

Rated just 89 in April, the Charlie Appleby-trained colt has gone up 25lb in the ratings and picked good prizes such as the Group Three Jersey Strakes at the Royal meeting.

The Dubawi gelding had run with credit in both the July Cup and Haydock Sprint Cup without making the frame, but that experience in Group Ones was a positive – as was the stiff six furlongs on soft ground.

Last year’s winner Glen Shiel made the running and proved a tough nut to crack, but Creative Force (11-2) was up to the task.

Hitting the front in the final furlong, the Godolphin runner kept up the gallop to hold off Glen Shiel (22-1) by a length and give Buick his 151st winner of the season, two behind reigning champion Oisin Murphy with just four races left on the final day of the title race.

Minzaal (16-1) was a length back in third with Art Power (3-1 favourite) a head away in fourth.

Appleby, remarkably saddling his first Champions Day runner, said: “After Haydock, it was always the plan to come here. The two positives were the ground being what it is and secondly him sharpening up.

“After winning the Jersey here at the Royal meeting, we ran him in the July Cup and then backed him up at Goodwood. James (Doyle) said he over-raced at Goodwood and felt like a sprinter in a seven-furlong race.

“I thought we were going to run a big race at Haydock, but the ground was too fast for him.

“In these big sprints they’ve got to be able to travel and this horse travels for fun. William rode him with bags of confidence and having won over seven here, we knew he was going to hit the line hard.

“It’s a great team result. It’s been a great season and for this little horse to win a Group One is brilliant.

“He’s a typical Dubawi who should get better with age and I feel the sprinting division is quite open.

“With Starman retired, there’s a hole there to be filled and I feel this horse is potentially young enough to do that – we’ve been looking for a new star sprinter since Blue Point was retired, so hopefully this horse can be a fun horse for the next year or two.”

William Buick kept his title hopes alive with Creative Force
William Buick kept his title hopes alive with Creative Force (PA)

It was ultimately not to be for Buick in his absorbing tussle with Murphy, but he said of his winner: “He really did deserve it. Obviously he won the Jersey here and he goes through that ground, which is a big help.

“The race worked out perfectly today – we had a nice draw and I liked the look of it. It worked out how I wanted it to and he was in good form going into it.

“He certainly deserved it, but we thought it was a good chance for him to show his best today.

“There were a lot of runners, they all turned up but he travelled into it very smoothly and it was a case of just waiting with him a little bit.

“He stumbled out of the stalls and the ground was very fast at Haydock, but if you stumble out of the stalls in a six-furlong Group One then it’s game over but he did get himself back into it and he ran well, considering.”

Glen Shiel ran with huge credit, and his trainer Archie Watson said: “I’m delighted. He does come alive here. That’s his second Group One second here this year.

“The blinkers worked first time, they really lit him up. He jumped and travelled very well. Hollie (Doyle) was delighted with him. He quickened away and just found one very good horse of Charlie’s to beat him.

“He’s just a dream for the owners to have and a dream for us to have.”

Murphy maintains slender lead over Buick in title battle

Oisin Murphy heads into the penultimate day of the British Flat jockeys’ championship two wins in front of William Buick after both claimed a victory apiece at Chelmsford on Thursday.

Dual champion Murphy arrived at the Essex venue with a cushion of two successes and his win aboard Notions in the racingwelfare.co.uk EBF Novice Stakes ensured he maintains that advantage as the duo head to Haydock on Friday.

Buick has been in sparkling form in recent days, riding a treble at Leicester on Tuesday before adding a Nottingham double on Wednesday and he was first off the mark at Chelmsford, steering Typical Woman to victory in the British Stallion Studs EBF Restricted Novice Stakes.

Murphy hit back in the very next race though and admitted he was feeling the pressure as he tries to secure a third successive title.

He told Racing TV: “I’ve been here before, I know what it’s like. No matter what everyone says, it’s not much fun – it’s a lot of pressure. Normally the pressures are only on big days, but I’m doing my best and I’m trying to make the most of every opportunity.

“I’ve got decent rides tonight and good rides tomorrow, and Saturday is obviously the best racing you can imagine. It’s a time we really should be enjoying it, but it’s tough work, race in, race out.

“I’ve got to thank everyone who puts me up – without the horses I can’t ride winners. I think last week I was 12 in front and standing here now I’m only two. So I need to make the most of every chance and hopefully that will be good enough.”

Both riders will be in action at Ascot on Saturday, with Derby hero Adayar the pick of Buick’s mounts while Murphy is looking forward to teaming up with Alcohol Free in the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes.

He added: “She’s been freshened up since the Juddmonte International, she went home for a few weeks and I rode her on the grass and she felt as good as ever. Hopefully that break did her the world of good. I have massive respect for Baaeed and Palace Pier, but don’t forget she’s a star also and a straight track and the ground will be in her favour.

“She’s got a low draw near The Revenant – on paper there’s a lack of pace and she’s very fast as we know, so that may play to her strengths.”

Murphy was fortunate to escape injury when Discover Dubai took a heavy fall two furlongs out in the tote.co.uk Free Streaming Every UK Race Handicap.

Buick’s best chance of the night appeared to be 2-9 favourite Lord Lovelace in the Support The Injured Jockeys Fund Novice Stakes, but after an early battle with the Murphy-ridden Golden Owl, the market leader dropped away to finish second behind Under The Twilight.

Murphy heads to Haydock with a total of 151 winners and five expected rides, while Buick is on 149 with a full book of eight mounts on Merseyside.

Coral make Murphy the 4-7 favourite to retain his title, with Buick a 5-4 chance to win his first championship. Paddy Power shortened Murphy to 4-7 from 4-6 favourite, while Buick is an 11-8 shot with that firm.

Paddy Power spokesman Paul Binfield said: “Jockeys are masters of precision timing and while most of this week it’s looked like William was timing his title challenge perfectly, a score draw tonight means we now feel Oisin is one step closer to securing his championship hat-trick.”

Buick halves deficit in title race with Nottingham double

William Buick kept the pressure on Oisin Murphy as a double at Nottingham cut the champion’s lead to two with three days of the jockeys’ title race remaining.

Murphy – who drew a blank from six rides – remains on 150 with Buick on 148 after his brace through Zebelle and Raasel from a full book of eight mounts.

Neither jockey had bothered the judge the sixth race – but the title race burst back into life with a stirring ride from Buick on Zebelle (13-2) in the Anderson Green Nursery Handicap.

The George Boughey-trained youngster was outpaced for the first part of the five-furlong dash, but came strong in the closing stages. Produced in the centre of the course, Zebelle responded to Buick’s urgings to record a crucial win by two and a quarter lengths.

William Buick strikes on Zebelle in the Anderson Green Nursery Handicap
William Buick strikes on Zebelle in the Anderson Green Nursery Handicap (Tim Goode/PA)

“They went very fast and she was outpaced. She’s very genuine and handled that ground well and came home with a wet sail,” Buick told Racing TV.

“I’ve had chances all day so hopefully I can keep going.”

Buick only had to wait 35 minutes to close the gap further as Raasel (13-8 favourite) extended his winning streak to three in the Persimmon Homes Handicap.

Mick Appleby’s in-form four-year-old, a winner at Goodwood and over this five furlongs, stayed on strongly to lead inside the final furlong and deny Wrenthorpe by half a length.

Paddy Power cut Buick to 11-10 from 7-4 for the title, with Murphy pushed out to 4-6 favourite from 4-9. Coral have Murphy at 8-11 and Buick at evens.

Paddy Power spokesman Paul Binfield said: “This reminds me so much of the titanic struggle between Paul Hanagan and Richard Hughes in 2010 and punters continue to want William, who well and truly possesses the momentum at present.”

Coral’s David Stevens said: “Although time is running out for William Buick, he continues to narrow the gap on Oisin Murphy, and as a result is now evens – the shortest odds he’s ever been – to win a first championship.

The two protagonists square up again on Thursday as they are both in action at Chelmsford.

Elsewhere on the card, Eldar Eladarov (13-8 favourite) looked an exciting prospect when running away with division two of the British Stallion Studs EBF Maiden Stakes over an extended mile.

The Roger Varian-trained colt, who cost £480,000 at the breeze-ups, strung out the opposition in the closing stages under David Egan to beat Janoobi by five lengths, with Clear Day another five lengths back in third.

Eldar Eldarov was an impressive winner on his debut
Eldar Eldarov was an impressive winner on his debut (Tim Goode/PA)

Egan said: “Coming back from the breeze-ups it probably took a while to chill him out, but he’s matured throughout the year and I can only see a horse like him getting better as a three-year-old.”

Glentaneous (5-1) was an emphatic winner of the Kier Construction Handicap for trainer Brian Meehan.

The three-year-old, ridden by Andrea Atzeni, drew clear in the final furlong to take the feature race by three and three-quarter lengths from Sandyman.

Atzeni said: “It was never in any doubt. He jumped, we had a nice draw and he travelled good into the race.

“When I let him down he kept on lengthening all the way to the line. When I looked up at the screen I couldn’t believe how far clear he was. He won quite nicely and liked the ground.”

Buick fires Leicester treble to reduce championship gap to four

William Buick reduced Oisin Murphy’s lead in the jockeys’ championship to four after riding a treble at Leicester on Tuesday.

Reigning champion Murphy began the day with a six-winner lead over his great rival, the pair having ridden 149 and 143 winners respectively in a battle that concludes on Qipco British Champions Day at Ascot on Saturday.

Murphy did manage to get himself to the 150-mark by steering Rod Millman’s 4-1 favourite Able Kane to victory in the Every Race Live On Racing TV Handicap – but it was Buick who left the Midlands the happier after booting home three winners.

William Buick returns victorious aboard Parlando
William Buick returns victorious aboard Parlando (Mike Egerton/PA)

The Norwegian-born rider got off the mark for the afternoon in the second race for his boss, Charlie Appleby.

Riding the newcomer Parlando (4-5 favourite) in the second division of the British EBF Novice Stakes, he looked booked for second when Dream Show went three lengths clear. But when Dream Show began to drift into the middle of the course, Buick sensed his chance and drove Parlando up to make a winning debut by a head.

Buick would have fancied his chances of a quick double on Robyn Brisland’s second-favourite Porsche Cavalier in the British Stallion Studs EBF Fillies’ Conditions Stakes.

She, though, was a clear second best behind Clive Cox’s well-bred Benefit (15-2), who was undoubtedly the potential equine star on show.

William Buick after winning with Kentucky Kitten
William Buick after winning with Kentucky Kitten (Mike Egerton/PA)

Buick had to settle for second again in the Every Race Live On Racing TV Nursery, with 7-2 joint-favourite Midgetonamission proving no match for market rival Hurry Up Hedley.

But while Murphy struck back aboard Able Kane, Buick ended the day in the best possible fashion – striking gold aboard Tim Easterby’s Kentucky Kitten (8-1) in the Visit racingtv.com Handicap before completing his hat-trick in the concluding leicesterraces Next Meeting Monday 25th October EBF Novice Stakes on John Butler’s Rhythm N Rock.

Murphy looked like making it two winners apiece with 8-15 favourite Future King, but having travelled strongly at the head of affairs for much of the way, Rhythm N Rock (5-1) charged home down the centre of the track to prevail by a length and a half.

Both riders are set to be in action at Nottingham on Wednesday, where Murphy has six booked mounts and Buick has eight.

Late withdrawals at Wolverhampton hit Buick’s championship push

William Buick headed to Wolverhampton on Monday with what appeared to be an incredibly strong book of rides and while he rode one winner, an unfortunate set of circumstances saw three of his mounts withdrawn.

Buick started the day six winners behind reigning champion jockey Oisin Murphy and the day got off to a perfect start as Pocket The Profit justified 11-8 favouritism in the Champions Day On Sky Sports Racing Nursery Handicap.

George Boughey’s juvenile was a winner at Brighton last time out and defied a 6lb penalty in taking style, suggesting there was more to come.

Buick then got the leg up on Roger Chalrlton’s Amalfi Bay in the Free Tips On attheraces.com Handicap, but the 100-30 favourite only beat one home as Jason Watson took the spoils on Harry Dunlop’s Thunder Ahead.

The day then took a turn for Buick as his mount in the in the Download The At The Races App Nursery Handicap, the Roger Varian-trained Poet, bolted on the way to the start and was withdrawn, leaving 11-4 favourite Mohi to triumph.

Buick then teamed up with James Tate’s Twilight Secret, the 11-4 joint-favourite in the Sky Sports Racing Sky 415 Handicap. However, on arriving at the start for the six-furlong contest, he was withdrawn on veterinary advice.

Joseph Parr’s Hello Me (9-2) took the spoils under Rossa Ryan, who later followed up on Thunder Queen (3-1 joint favourite) in the Read Kevin Blake On attheraces.com EBF Novice Stakes when Buick’s intended mount Infrared, who was favourite at the time, was withdrawn in the minutes leading up to the race, again on the vet’s advice.

Tricolore ridden by Hollie Doyle (centre) winning the race named after her column
Tricolore ridden by Hollie Doyle (centre) winning the race named after her column (David Davies/PA)

Buick then went close when second on Pretty Sweet in the following Read Hollie Doyle’s Column On attheraces.com Handicap when Doyle, celebrating her birthday, won her own race on Tricolore (6-1) for Marco Botti.

She told Sky Sports Racing: “I actually won on him earlier in the year and really liked him and he’s got some good form.

“He just needs everything to drop right and today it did.”

Buick then must have fancied his chances on odds-on favourite Toromona in the Follow At The Races On Twitter Maiden Stakes but he was no match for William Haggas’ Lady Rockstar and Kieran Shoemark, with Buick finishing a 12-length second.

The championship chaser had to settle for second in the finale as well when Lower Street (6-1) had Buick back in second on One Last Dance.

Oisin Murphy had one winner at Kempton's evening meeting
Oisin Murphy had one winner at Kempton’s evening meeting (Mike Egerton/PA)

Like Buick, Murphy headed to Kempton’s evening meeting with a strong book of rides but he, too, had to settle for just the one winner.

That came aboard Brian Meehan’s Cu Chulainn, the 10-11 favourite, who ran out a ready winner of the Unibet Casino Deposit £10 Get £40 Bonus Novice Stakes.

Murphy had four other mounts in the frame but the day ended the way it had started, with the current champion six in front.

Native Trail stays unbeaten in Dewhurst Stakes

Native Trail underlined his Classic credentials by extending his unbeaten record in the Darley Dewhurst Stakes at Newmarket.

Hugely impressive on his racecourse introduction at Sandown in June, Charlie Appleby’s colt had since edged a thrilling renewal of the Superlative Stakes on Newmarket’s July Course before successfully graduating to Group One level in the National Stakes at the Curragh.

The brilliant Pinatubo completed the National Stakes-Dewhurst double for Appleby, jockey William Buick and the Godolphin team two years ago to confirm his status as 2019’s champion juvenile – and Native Trail was the 5-6 favourite to follow suit on the Rowley Mile.

It was not entirely straightforward for the market leader, with Dubawi Legend proving why he is held in such high regard by trainer Hugo Palmer with a bold effort from the front.

Buick had to get to work with a couple of furlongs still to run – but once angled out to challenge Dubawi Legend, Native Trail picked up smartly and was ultimately well on top as he passed the post two lengths to the good.

Champagne Stakes winner Bayside Boy was just half a length further away in third.

Coral make Native Trail their 3-1 favourite (from 4-1) for next year’s 2000 Guineas, with his stablemate Coroebus – winner of the Autumn Stakes just half-an-hour earlier – next in the market at 5-1.

Appleby said of Native Trail: “When he was walking around the paddock I was getting more confident, because he was the standout.

“Today is a huge day, and we have two smart colts on our hands for next year’s Guineas. We’re fortunate to be going into the winter with two fantastic colts.

Charlie Appleby was delighted with Native Trail's Dewhurst success
Charlie Appleby was delighted with Native Trail’s Dewhurst success (Mike Egerton/PA)

“There’s a lot more to come, you’d like to say, but he (Native Trail) is unbeaten with two Group Ones. I’m not going to get too carried away.

“He’s a big boy, 540 kilos, and came in at that weight from the breeze-ups. Full credit to the team who purchased him, and Norman Williamson who consigned him. Since then, Norman has taken a keen interest.

“Norman said after the National Stakes he still didn’t know what he was doing – and he was correct, because his work at home wasn’t too exciting, but he warms into a race and does it the right way round.

“I was confident once William gave him the office he would pick up well.”

He added: “I don’t know if he’ll have a trial. We’ll try and split them up, but we’ll look forward to the spring.

“I’ve never put him anywhere near Coroebus at home – they are different types. Coroebus travels very well and has a smart turn of foot, whereas this horse does things in a different manner.”

Buick said: “It was a messy race, and we went a messy pace. Obviously we ended up on this rail for some reason, but I sort of half-expected that.

“I gave myself options the whole way through, and I knew ultimately that when I gave him a clear run he would pick up, and he did.”

When asked to compare Native Trail to Coroebus, he added: “It’s very hard – they are both very good. But one is a dual Group One winner, so at this stage, he’s ahead.

“We’ll see next year, but if they both develop it will be interesting.”

Coroebus sets record straight with impressive Autumn Stakes success

Coroebus put his last-gasp defeat in the Royal Lodge behind him with a dominant display in the Emirates Autumn Stakes at Newmarket.

An impressive winner on his July Course debut in August, Charlie Appleby’s charge was well-fancied to follow up in the Group Two Royal Lodge Stakes a fortnight ago.

The Dubawi colt looked home for all money that day after powering to the lead inside the final two furlongs, but began to paddle in the closing stages and was mowed down by the rallying Royal Patronage in the shadows of the post.

Coroebus was the 4-5 favourite to reward those who kept the faith on his return to the same course and distance – and perhaps mindful of how the race unfolded two weeks ago, William Buick settled his mount at the rear of the field for much of the one-mile contest.

After making smooth inroads as the leaders began to falter, the market leader delivered his challenge towards the stands rail and was ultimately well on top as he passed the post with two lengths in hand over Acomb Stakes runner-up Imperial Fighter.

Paddy Power reacted to the impressive display by trimming Coroebus to 5-1 from 8-1 for next year’s 2000 Guineas.

Appleby said: “Some people questioned running him back so quick after the Royal Lodge, but I didn’t want to run him in potentially deep ground at Doncaster in the Futurity (Vertem Futurity Trophy).

“I wanted to come here on good ground, and we were confident after what we saw last time – when maybe I was to blame, because the way he quickened caught Will by surprise. I told him to get him involved, and he travelled away and quickened immediately.

“He’s a horse who has always been exciting – even in the spring he was doing stuff he shouldn’t have been doing for the size of him.

“He’s always impressed us at home – I could have run him in May if I’d wanted to.

“We’ll put him away now and look towards the spring – and we’ll probably take in a trial, probably the proven route in the Craven.

“He wouldn’t want much further than a mile. If anything, when he strengthens up he’ll get quicker.”

Modern Games makes all for Tattersalls triumph

Modern Games made every yard of the running to claim an impressive victory in the Tattersalls Stakes at Newmarket – putting himself in line for a trip to the Breeders’ Cup.

Trained by Charlie Appleby, who can do no wrong at present, the Dubawi colt bounded out of the stalls and barely saw another rival.

Winner of a nursery at Doncaster when last seen, Modern Games led the favourite Trident in a pair on the far side of Newmarket’s expanse.

In the centre of the track were Harrow and Cresta, while on the near side Richard Hughes’ Ring Of Beara and Claim The Crown soon appeared to be disadvantaged by racing closest to the stands rail. Marcus Tregoning’s Ribhi bolted with Jim Crowley to post and was withdrawn.

Mickael Barzalona looked confident on Andre Fabre’s Trident going into the dip, but William Buick had saved plenty on Modern Games (3-1) and on meeting the rising ground, he began to pull away.

He eventually won by two and a half lengths with Harrow pipping Cresta for third.

Coral cut the winner to 14-1 from 33s for next year’s 2000 Guineas, while Paddy Power offer 6-1 about his chance for the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf.

The victory added further strength to Appleby’s formidable hand in the juvenile department, one which contains current Guineas favourite Native Trail.

“Full credit to everyone at home. He’s not a big, imposing horse by any stretch – but Lorna, who rides him at home, said this morning it would take a good one to beat him,” said the Moulton Paddocks handler.

“He did a bit of work on Saturday and while he didn’t surprise us, he worked particularly well.

“That was always the plan today – to go out there and make it and get them to come at us. It was a great ride by William and it paid off.”

Appleby confirmed a trip to Del Mar could be next on the agenda for Modern Games – and he is set to be joined by Albahr, who heads the market at 5-1 following his Grade One win at Woodbine last weekend.

“He’s a neat, little horse and maybe we’ll have a look at the Breeders’ Cup,” Appleby added.

“He’s got plenty of experience under his belt now. I wouldn’t quite think of him as a Dewhurst horse as if you were to put him and Native Trail together at home, it wouldn’t be much of a competition.

“It would be a shame to run the two of them in the Dewhurst. If Native Trail wasn’t around, then as we all know this race today is a springboard to a Dewhurst.

“We’ve got Albahr for the Breeders’ Cup as well. He has a slightly different profile, but they’re two hard-knocking sons of Dubawi who can go to the Breeders’ Cup and might just run all right over there.”

Murphy back to double-figure lead over Buick in title battle

Oisin Murphy broke new ground with his first winner at Hamilton as he stretched his jockeys’ championship lead over William Buick to double figures.

While Murphy’s title rival had to serve a ban on Sunday, the dual champion made a rare trip to the Scottish course for five rides.

He was out of luck on the first two, as Ben Curtis instead rode a quickfire double, but then struck on all-the-way winner Trusty Scout in the Big Drew Hunter Memorial Selling Stakes – taking his tally to 134 this season, and into a lead of 10 over Buick.

Trusty Scout, also providing trainer David O’Meara with a double, dominated from the front on rain-softened ground to win at 16-5, by a length and three-quarters from Caballero.

Assessing his battle over the next month to outdo Buick and record his third successive title, Murphy told Racing TV: “It’s really hotting up, (and) he’s going to have a lot of ammunition coming up – with Charlie Appleby’s two-year-olds.

“So I’m going to have to work very hard, and stay out of the stewards’ room – and I hope the yards I’m riding for will keep flying.

“They’ve been having great seasons – from Andrew Balding, Ed Walker, Hughie Morrison, Saeed bin Suroor, loads of people have been helping me.

“So if we can finish off the next few weeks that would be brilliant.”

Murphy was again unplaced on his fourth mount Water Of Leith, and then had to settle for second at his final attempt with Mews House – behind easy winning favourite Albegone in the Members Of Hamilton Park Racecourse Handicap.

But reflecting on the previously unsuccessful Trusty Scout’s first career victory, he added: “It’s great to get on the scoresheet here.

“I’ve been here before and haven’t had a winner – so thanks to David O’Meara for putting me on one today.

“I actually missed a winner here, because my flight was delayed the last time I was here. But thankfully, we were on time today!”

Both Murphy and Buick are in action on Monday, at Leicester.

Solid Stone digs deep for Group Three gold in Legacy Cup

Sir Michael Stoute’s Solid Stone continued his progression when battling back gamely to win the Dubai Duty Free Legacy Cup Stakes at Newbury.

Third in the Wolferton Stakes at Royal Ascot in June, he had just been coming up short in Listed and Group Three company until last time out at Windsor.

Connections decided on a change of tactics there and he made all the running to win a Group Three, but that meant he was carrying a penalty on this occasion.

William Buick replaced Richard Kingscote in the saddle but adopted the same tactics, however, with over a furlong to run he was swamped.

Odds-on favourite Al Aasy, who appeared to be going well, Foxes Tales and Ilaraab all went by Solid Stone, but Buick was yet to ask for everything.

As Al Aasy folded disappointingly on his first start since being gelded, Solid Stone (12-1) began to hit top gear and by the time the line came, he was going away again to beat Foxes Tales by a neck.

Buick said: “He’s at that level, obviously, he had a 3lb penalty. Al Aasy looked the class horse in the race but he had questions to answer.

“I spoke to Sir Michael and we couldn’t see any pace in the race and given he won from the front at Windsor, we decided to go on and take advantage of it.

“They jumped on him when he was still going through the gears, but you wouldn’t find many horses that have the tenacity that he has. He responded very well.

“I hadn’t gone for everything when they joined me as I could feel him winding up, but it’s not ideal to drop back and then go again at that stage of the race.

“He won going away which would encourage you to try a mile and a half at some stage.”

Native Trail demolishes National Stakes field

Native Trail rocketed to 2000 Guineas favouritism as he maintained his unbeaten record with a brilliant victory in the Goffs Vincent O’Brien National Stakes, giving trainer Charlie Appleby a third win in the Curragh showpiece.

Previously successful in the Group One contest with Quorto (2019) and the brilliant Pinatubo (2020), the Moulton Paddocks handler – on the mark 24 hours earlier with Hurricane Lane in the St Leger at Doncaster – sent another high-class juvenile across the Irish Sea in search of top-level honours.

A son of Oasis Dream, the Superlative Stakes winner faced a far from straightforward task, with the Aidan O’Brien-trained Point Lonsdale the 8-13 favourite to make it five from five, and Hugo Palmer’s Ebro River bidding to follow up success in last month’s Phoenix Stakes.

William Buick had to nudge Native Trail (7-2) into contention with a couple of furlongs to run – but he really found top gear late on.

Point Lonsdale did his best to make a race of it, but Appleby’s ace was three and a half lengths clear of the odds-on shot at the line, with Ebro River close up in third.

Paddy Power make Native Trail their 5-1 favourite (from 10-1) for next year’s Guineas, with Coral and Ladbrokes both 4-1.

Appleby said: “This is a route we’ve taken with Pinatubo and Quorto before him – and it was always our plan immediately after the Superlative to come here with this horse.

“People ask ‘why don’t you look at the Champagne Stakes’ (at Doncaster), but I didn’t feel carrying a penalty there on softer conditions was potentially going to suit him.

“I think this is a great race and an indicator to the Dewhurst. It’s a Group One and a great weekend to be involved in.

“To have another winner of the National Stakes is very satisfying.”

Native Trail in full flight
Native Trail in full flight (Brian Lawless/PA)

He added: “He’s an interesting horse to be around. I took him to Newmarket a couple of weeks ago and if you’d asked me there if we’d have been winning a National Stakes, I might have been sat on the fence slightly.

“Full credit to the team at home. We definitely felt the horse had come forward for that gallop and we changed a bit of equipment on him today.

“William said he’s still so green and it felt like he was going down to the start on a maiden.

“He gave him a shove early doors to get up the revs, but I knew with two furlongs to go the one thing this horse was going to do was gallop out strong.

“I’d say we’ll go straight to the Dewhurst. I don’t know if he’s quite got the head for a Breeders’ Cup yet.”

Hot favourite Hurricane Lane out to deliver Godolphin’s seventh St Leger

Hurricane Lane is set to go off the short-priced Cazoo St Leger favourite as he seeks to give Godolphin a seventh victory in the Doncaster Classic.

Classic Cliche carried the famous royal blue silks to victory back in 1995 – and further success has followed with Nedawi and Mutafaweq in 1998 and 1999, Rule Of Law in 2004, Mastery in 2009 and Encke, who denied Camelot the Triple Crown in 2012.

Victory will draw Sheikh Mohammed’s operation level with Archibald Hamilton, the 9th Duke Of Hamilton, who was one of the earliest winners of the world’s oldest Classic in 1786 with Paragon.

Hurricane Lane began this season somewhat under the radar, with just a Newmarket novice win to his name – but in winning the Dante, the best trial for the Derby, he announced himself as a major player.

Frankie Dettori celebrates winning the St Leger on Classic Cliche
Frankie Dettori celebrates winning the St Leger on Classic Cliche (John Giles/PA)

While he met with his first defeat when third to stablemate Adayar at Epsom, he has since won the Irish Derby and the Grand Prix de Paris to mark himself out as a top-class colt.

Trainer Charlie Appleby is confident of securing his first St Leger success, telling www.godolphin.com: “This has always been Hurricane Lane’s objective since the Grand Prix de Paris, and his preparation has gone well.

“He has consistently improved with every start this year and looks a lot more mature physically and mentally compared to earlier in the season.

“He is the class horse in the race and looks the one to beat.”

Hurricane Lane’s rider William Buick has enjoyed previous success in the Doncaster showpiece, winning back-to-back renewals on Arctic Cosmos and Masked Marvel for John Gosden in 2010 and 2011.

“It’s a race I always look forward to, and Hurricane Lane goes there with a good profile,” said Buick.

“He’s only been beaten once, in the Derby behind Adayar, and that was a good run in itself. Hurricane Lane’s form before and since is rock solid, and he’s really shown his quality in the Irish Derby and the Grand Prix de Paris – where he was spectacular.

“The way he finished off both races suggests there ought not to be a problem with the trip, but you never know until you try it.

“With his run style and his breeding, you would imagine he would stay as well as anything else would, and he’s got the quality, but I’ve ridden non stayers before in the race who I thought would get the trip.”

High Definition needs to bounce back to form
High Definition needs to bounce back to form (PA)

Like Godolphin, Aidan O’Brien already has six St Leger victories on his CV – and fires a four-pronged assault in search of his seventh.

The Ballydoyle maestro’s chief hope appears to be High Definition, who spent the winter months as favourite for the Derby, but is winless in three starts this season.

The Galileo colt made a promising enough start to his campaign when third behind Hurricane Lane in the Dante, but missed Epsom after a setback and has since failed to fire in either the Irish Derby or the Great Voltigeur at York.

O’Brien said: “High Definition had a little slip in the Irish Derby when he stumbled and he just lost his confidence a bit. York was his first run back after that, and we were happy with his run there and we thought he would come on mentally for it.

“He’s a horse we’ve always thought that he could get further than a mile and a half.”

Frankie Dettori, also bidding for a seventh Leger success, rides High Definition for the first time, and said: “He was Derby favourite for six months and is kind of the forgotten horse.

“His Dante run wasn’t too bad over a mile and a quarter – he was two lengths behind the favourite (Hurricane Lane).

“Hopefully he will relish the distance.”

O’Brien’s squad is completed by Interpretation (Hollie Doyle), Sir Lucan (James Doyle) and The Mediterranean (Wayne Lordan).

Interpretation winning at Leopardstown
Interpretation winning at Leopardstown (Brian Lawless/PA)

He added: “They all seem to be well. The Mediterranean is in good form, and he ran very well at York the last day. We’ve been happy with him, and it looks like he might stay a bit further.

“Sir Lucan is well – he ran well at Goodwood and wasn’t beaten far at York as well. Frankie just thought a little bit more cover might have suited him, but he still ran a nice race.

“Interpretation has been gradually progressive and he looks like he stays very well – he’s a very relaxed horse. Hollie rides after having a couple of rides for us at York this year.”

Johnny Murtagh surprisingly never won this Qipco British Champions Series contest during his illustrious riding career, but has strong claims of breaking his duck in it as a trainer with the improving Gordon Stakes winner Ottoman Emperor.

“I never rode the winner of the St Leger, although I didn’t ride in it that often, so to win it now as a trainer would be massive,” said Murtagh.

“He’s a horse that has been on the improve all season. He came out of Goodwood well and he’s unexposed.

“He has a chance, but he has to stay the distance – it’s a tough race at Doncaster for the three-year-olds.

“Having said that, he’s on an upward curve, and we’re excited about the weekend.”

Mojo Star finished in front of Hurricane Lane in the Derby, but behind him in the Irish version, when he had excuses.

Mojo Star winning at Newbury
Mojo Star winning at Newbury (John Walton/PA)

Richard Hannon has since taken him to Newbury for a confidence-boosting win.

“The flat, galloping track will suit. He was probably soundly beaten at the Curragh – but we almost got knocked over, and it took him a long time to get going,” said Hannon

“The extra two furlongs will suit him much more. He’ll get the trip. It will be more to his liking – the harder they go, the more it will be to his liking.

“He ran a very good race in the Derby. He’s not the one to beat, but he’s been underrated and deserves to take his chance.”

Tom Marquand after winning the Chester Vase on Youth Spirit
Tom Marquand after winning the Chester Vase on Youth Spirit (Alan Crowhurst/PA)

Youth Spirit won the Chester Vase for Andrew Balding back in May, and has been on the premises in several big races since.

He will be ridden by Tom Marquand, who won the race last year on Galileo Chrome.

“Youth Spirit didn’t run up to expectations in the Derby, having won the Chester Vase, but he’s come back in good form following a rest and has run superbly since at Goodwood and York,” said the jockey.

“I think he’s entitled to be involved, and he’s about twice the price of horses whose form he ties in really well with. He’s one I’m looking forward to.”

Truth takes Scotsman honours in thrilling finish

Noble Truth put an under-par run behind him to get back on track in game fashion in the Cazoo Flying Scotsman Stakes at Doncaster.

The Charlie Appleby-trained colt had looked a bright prospect when getting off the mark at Newmarket on his second start, only to blot his copy book when fourth behind Royal Patronage in the Group Three Acomb Stakes at York last month.

The Godolphin-owned runner showed that form to be wrong with a battling success over Hoo Ya Mal in this Listed contest over seven furlongs.

Hoo Ya Mal looked like getting up, but Noble Truth (9-1) rallied to deny the 2-1 favourite by a nose. Gwan So was a length and a quarter away in third.

“He obviously won nicely at Newmarket and disappointed the last day for no apparent reason,” said Appleby’s assistant, Alex Merriam.

“He settled nicely today and we’re pleased with him.

“I’ve had a quick chat with Charlie. There are no immediate plans, but we’ll stick to seven furlongs at the minute and just see where we go when we get home.”

Thunder Max gave Richard Hannon a pleasant surprise when making a winning debut in the Coopers Marquees Maiden Stakes.

By the trainer’s 2014 2000 Guineas hero Night Of Thunder, Thunder Max (16-1) knuckled down for Rossa Ryan to outpoint the more experienced Leuven Power by a neck. Unilateralism was a neck away in third place.

“He’s always been a lovely colt and he was coming here for a run. He’s not shown anything at home but quite often the nice horses do that,” said Hannon.

“He’s wanted the trip and he’ll improve massively. I’m very happy.

“There are some lovely races in the autumn – there’s the Autumn Stakes, the Horris Hill. I’m just delighted he’s done that. I’d hoped he’d be a nice horse but I didn’t know. He’s not a flashy horse at home, but he’s by Night Of Thunder and anything is possible by that stallion.”

Able Kane (right) scored for Oisin Murphy
Able Kane (right) scored for Oisin Murphy (Mike Egerton/PA)

Champion jockey Oisin Murphy reached 150 domestic winners for the calendar year with victory on Able Kane (9-2) in the Cazoo Handicap.

Rod Millman’s four-year-old withstood the challenges of Raatea and Chairmanoftheboard to land the six-and-a-half furlong prize by half a length and a neck.

Murphy said: “It was my idea to take the headgear off. I thought he might have gone a bit stale with the visor and it was worth a try.

“He really enjoyed that. He bowled along and found loads under pressure.

“The rain took the sting out of the ground and he appreciated that.”

Rhythmic Intent (right) led them home in the Mallard
Rhythmic Intent (right) led them home in the Mallard (Mike Egerton/PA)

Rhythmic Intent (6-1) won for the first time in 13 months with a convincing display in the racehorselotto.com Mallard Handicap.

Hollie Doyle always had the Stuart Williams-trained five-year-old in a good position and sent him on to score by a length and three-quarters from HMS President.

Williams admitted the heavy rain just before the race helped Rhythmic Intent’s cause.

“The rain suited him well. He went through the race nicely and the way the race went, you felt it was going well,” said the Newmarket handler.

“It’s been a frustrating season but he ran really well at York last time. We might come back here for the November Handicap.”

Promising apprentice Adam Farragher enjoyed a smooth success on the William Haggas-trained Sea La Rosa (2-1) in the British EBF Premier Fillies’ Handicap.

Leading over a furlong out, Sea La Rosa triumphed by three-quarters of a length from Viola.