Sir Dancealot: Has won three of his last four starts
PICTURE: Mark Cranham (racingpost.com/photos)
By Bruce Jackson 8:41AM 19 OCT 2016
DAVID ELSWORTH is hoping to stage another Group 1 giant-killing act when he saddles recent York scorer Sir Dancealot in Saturday’s Racing Post Trophy.
The trainer’s most recent Group 1 success ended the unbeaten run of last year’s Derby winner Golden Horn when 50-1 filly Arabian Queen captured the International at York last August.
Elsworth, who won the Trophy in 1991 with Seattle Rhyme, has again engaged the services of the season’s champion jockey – while Silvestre de Sousa rode Arabian Queen to victory last year, Jim Crowley will bid to do likewise on Sir Dancealot.
Most bookmakers have been dismissive of the Elsworth contender, although not Coral, who initially priced him up at 9-1 for Saturday’s race at Doncaster while other firms went as big as 20-1. He is now a best-priced 16-1 shot.
‘On the premises at the business end’
Crowley’s agent Tony Hind was quick to ring Elsworth to reunite the champion jockey with the colt he won on twice at Kempton in the summer before Shane Kelly rode him at York. Crowley received the jockeys’ title trophy on Saturday but has yet to secure a Group 1 this campaign.
Sir Dancealot dropped back to six furlongs to win the Listed Rockingham Stakes last time after finishing third in the Group 3 Somerville Stakes over seven furlongs at Newmarket.
While the Sir Prancealot colt holds a Group 3 Horris Hill entry over seven furlongs at Newbury on the same day, the Newmarket trainer is keen to let him take his chance in Saturday’s £200,000 mile feature.
“It’s 220 yards further than he’s ever run, but I’d be disappointed if he doesn’t travel into the last furlong and if he isn’t at least on the premises at the business end,” said Elsworth.
Slow ground a concern
Sir Dancealot’s freshman sire Sir Prancealot, winner of the five-furlong Flying Childers at Doncaster, has four winners who have scored over the trip already to heighten hopes.
Elsworth added: “He’s produced some precocious two-year-olds and Sir Dancealot has got bags of speed, but his performance at Newmarket would be good enough to give him a chance in what is a very valuable race.”
The trainer’s only caveat was over the ground. “If it comes up soft and the ground gets slow we might reconsider, but it looks like being good ground,” he said.
“People have a hang-up that the Racing Post Trophy is a slog for next year’s mile-and-a-half horses and that the Dewhurst is for Guineas horses, but they are only seven-furlong and mile races on racecourses.”