The Bet Victor Racing Column

First published in Sport

KINGMAN heads a field of 14 for the first classic of the season with John Gosden’s colt well supported into favouritism after his annihilation of the field in Greenham Stakes at Newbury last month.

Comparisons are inevitable, but futile, with the incomparable Frankel the last horse to do the Greenham/Guineas double given they both run in the colours of Prince Khalid Abdullah and.

Despite rumours circulating in the aftermath that the apple of Aidan O’Brien’s eye Australia (3.50) would not run at Newmarket, the colt arrives safe and sound and must be the selection.

O’Brien has already saddled the winner of the first classic of the season on half a dozen occasions and a seventh success would equal the record of John Scott set in the 19th Century.

The Ballydoyle handler has made no secret as to how highly he rates his beautifully bred colt, a son of Derby winner Galileo out of the brilliant Oaks winner Ouija Board, and whilesome have suggested the Derby is his primary objective O’Brien insists he is not short of speed for the Newmarket mile.

Beaten at the Curragh on debut, when green and slowly away, the colt was not particularly impressive when landing his maiden on his next start but it was the Group 3 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Trial that marked him down as being a potential star.

Allowed to go off 5/2 in a four-runner race he pulverised Free Eagle who, himself, had been touted as a superstar when scoring by 5 lengths on debut..

It looks like a vintage Guineas; Toormore and Kingman for Britain but Australia, granted good or faster ground, gets the vote for Ireland and a Magnificent Seven for Aidan O’Brien in the first Classic of the season.

Elsewhere on the card, Jim Bolger’s Trading Leather (3.10) was a winner at the track in his 2-y-o days winning the Autumn Stakes from Richard Hannon’s classy Montiridge and, providing the ground stays on the right side of the good, he has to have excellent claims running in the Godolphin blue for the first time.

The Irish Derby hero held his form well throughout an excellent campaign last season.

He looks the class act and genuine Group One animal running in a G2 field.

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