Max Dynamite (pink): “he’ll have to do a lot better next week”
PICTURE: Getty Images
By Tony O’Hehir 3:46PM 10 JUN 2016
PAT SMULLEN, who won the Ascot Gold Cup on Rite Of Passage for Dermot Weld in 2010, has been booked by Willie Mullins to ride Max Dynamite in Thursday’s renewal of the stayers’ race.
The eight-times Irish champion jockey, who enjoyed the biggest win of his career on Harzand in the Investec Derby a week ago, will be teaming up with the 10-1 shot for the first time.
Max Dynamite was ridden last season by Frankie Dettori, who partnered the six-year-old to win the Group 2 Lonsdale Cup at York and again when the combination lost out by half a length in the Melbourne Cup.
Ryan Moore, who was on board when the Rich and Susannah Ricci-owned gelding made his reappearance in the Group 3 Henry II Stakes at Sandown last month, will be on Gold Cup favourite, Order Of St George, for Aidan O’Brien on Thursday.
Mullins said: “We’ve got Pat Smullen for Max Dynamite, who was a bit disappointing when third of four at Sandown.
“Whether that was down to tactics or the fact he hadn’t run since Melbourne, I don’t know but he’ll have to do a lot better next week. We hope that will be the case and he does seem to be in good form.”
21 remain in Gold Cup
Max Dynamite was last night as short of 6-1 second favourite behind Order Of St George after 21 remained in the Group 1 at the confirmation stage.
Mullins, who went close to Gold Cup success when Simenon ran Estimate to a neck in 2013, has enjoyed Royal Ascot success on four occasions and the three horses involved – Simenon, who completed the Ascot Stakes – Queen Alexandra Stakes double in 2012, Pique Sous, the 2014 Queen Alexandra winner, and Clondaw Warrior, who landed the Ascot Stakes a year ago – will all be in action next week.
Mullins said: “Pique Sous goes for the Ascot Stakes and Ryan Moore rides while Sempre Medici (Martin Harley) will run in the same race. Simenon, Clondaw Warrior and possibly Pique Sous, depending on how he fares on Tuesday, are down for the Queen Alexandra.
“Wicklow Brave will probably take his chance in the Hardwicke Stakes and William Buick will probably ride. Ivan Grozny is a possible for the Duke of Edinburgh Stakes.”
Weld expects to have three runners at the meeting. He said: “Silver Concorde will run in the Ascot Stakes on Tuesday. He has plenty of weight but he’s in good form. Tanaza is an intended runner in the Coronation Stakes while Ebediyin will run in the Queen’s Vase.”