Exosphere will look to forget his disappointing display at Ascot
PICTURE: ALAN CROWHURST/GETTY IMAGES
By Alex Wiltshire 12:29PM 1 JUL 2016
EXOSPHERE could attempt to seek Royal Ascot redemption at Newmarket next week after he featured among 11 confirmations for the for the Group 2 Princess of Wales’s Arqana Racing Club Stakes at Newmarket on Thursday.
The Sir Michael Stoute-trained four-year-old finished a disappointing eighth of nine when sent off the well backed 6-4 favourite for the Group 2 Hardwicke Stakes, 19 lengths behind the eventual winner Dartmouth, owned by The Queen.
Teddy Grimthorpe, racing manager to Khalid Abdullah, owner of Exosphere, was at a loss to explain that performance, but confirmed the 1m4f race would be the next target.
Speaking to At The Races he said: “We don’t know what happened to Exosphere. Nothing came out of it, he scoped fine and was sound out of the race. He will head for the Princess of Wales’s.”
Rivals at Newmarket
Exosphere, who convincingly won the Group 2 Jockey Club stakes at Newmarket in April, could be joined by other notable contenders including The Grey Gatsby, who would step down to Group 2 level following his fourth place finish in the Prince of Wales’s Stakes at the royal meeting.
Red Vernon remains in contention, and he would likewise be dropping down from Group 1 level after contesting both the Derby at Epsom and the Irish Derby, finishing sixth and fourth respectively.
Godolphin’s Elite Army is still in at the six-day confirmation stage following his second in the Duke of Edinburgh Stakes at Royal Ascot, as is Eagle Top, however he holds an entry for Sunday’s Group 1 Grand-Prix de Saint Cloud in France.