Gavin Sheehan: will partner one of the leading fancies Maserati
PICTURE: Getty Images
By Jon Lees 7:03PM 3 AUG 2016
Preview: USA, Thursday 6.00pm BST
Saratoga: A. P. Smithwick Memorial Steeplechase (Grade 1) 2m½f, 4yo+
GAVIN SHEEHAN will use the ten-day break from jump racing in Britain to try to win one of America’s leading jumps races on Thursday.
He made his debut in a 2m handicap at Saratoga on Wednesday in advance of Thusday’s Grade 1 A P Smethwick Memorial Steeplechase in which he will partner one of the leading fancies Maserati, who has won his last two starts.
The favourite for the race is Bob Le Beau, winner of last year’s Grade 1 New York Turf Writers Cup on the same track, who makes his 2016 debut over jumps as the top weight in the $ 125,000 race. The nine-year-old will be ridden by Jack Doyle, now a leading jumps jockey in the US.
Opponents to Bob Le Beau, who finished third last year, include 2014 Eclipse Award winner Demonstrative, a two-time winner of the New York Turf Writers, and three from the stable of US champion jumps trainer Jack Fisher, whose main hope Schoodic is the mount of Danny Mullins, visiting from Ireland.
Sheehan’s mount Maserati is one of two trained by Leslie Young. The other is Spirit Of Shankly, who was trained by Charlie Longsdon – for whom he won six times – until April.