Balding eyeing John Smith's Cup riches for Elbereth


Elbereth: won well at Nottingham last time

  PICTURE: Mark Cranham (  

 By James Burn 4:15PM 5 JUL 2016 

LEADING trainer Andrew Balding has yet to win the John Smith’s Cup, but thinks the “reasonably” handicapped Elbereth can put that right in Saturday’s famous handicap, which – with a prize fund of £200,000 – will be the richest ever running of the race.


Elbereth runs in the colours of owner-breeder David Taylor and showed her wellbeing by winning a Listed race for fillies and mares at Nottingham last month.

She is 20-1 with Coral and William Hill to become the first distaffer since Flying Clarets in 2008 to win the John Smith’s Cup.

‘Capable of being competitive’

“Elbereth has been in good form since winning at Nottingham and this has been her target since,” said Balding, whose representative is set to be ridden by 3lb claimer Eddy Greatrex.

He added: “It seems realistic to have a go at this as she is a Listed winner who is still off a reasonable handicap mark [98] and I think she is capable of being competitive.

“The track should suit and as long as it doesn’t rain too much, Saturday is the plan.”

The going at York was on Tuesday described as good to firm and, with the forecast mainly dry and warm, officials will water overnight into Wednesday.

Horse Racing News | Racing Post

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