Churchill (Seamie Heffernan) wins the Futurity Stakes in August
PICTURE: Patrick McCann (racingpost.com/photos)
By Keith Melrose 11:00AM 6 OCT 2016
2,000 GUINEAS favourite Churchill is among the seven runners declared for the Dubai Dewhurst Stakes, the feature race of Newmarket’s Future Champions Weekend, which will be run on Saturday.
Churchill has gone unbeaten in four starts over 7f since his debut, most recently with a decisive victory over Mehmas in the Group 1 National Stakes at the Curragh.
The Dewhurst looks set to provide his toughest challenge yet, with unbeaten Solario Stakes winner South Seas and Blue Point, impressive in the Gimcrack but turned over in the Middle Park, among his rivals.
Andrew Balding, trainer of South Seas, said earlier in the week: “It’s the number one two-year-old race of the year but we’re going there with an unbeaten horse who has done everything we’ve asked him to do.”
Churchill is the 8-11 favourite for the race with SkyBet, who were first to release prices after declarations were made. South Seas is 11-2 and Blue Point 7-1, the latter with Coral.
Seven Heavens and Rivet were both also available at single-figure odds, while Thunder Snow and Lancaster Bomber, a stablemate of the favourite, are outsiders.
St Michel makes the cut
Week-long speculation over whether Doncaster Cup third St Michel would make the final field for the Cesarewitch was settled on Thursday with the news that Sir Mark Prescott’s three-year-old emerged 33rd on the list, with a maximum of 34 guaranteed a run.
Silver Concorde, Jennies Jewel, Magic Circle, Pyromaniac, Artful Artist and Perceus all came out to allow St Michel, 11-2 favourite before declarations were made, to get a run. Graasten was the last to get in.
It was not all good news for backers of St Michel, however, as the draw placed him in stall 32. With only three outside of him as it stands (reserve Always Resolute is in stall 36), jockey Luke Morris will do well to find a good position.