July Cup 2010 Preview
The July Festival at Newmarket Racecourse is less than two weeks away and our excitement about the July Cup, the meeting’s feature race, is mounting. The July Cup is Europe’s most valuable sprint race and attracts the finest thoroughbred short distance runners from all over the world. As the unofficial test race for potential contenders for the title of European Champion Sprinter, the July Cup is one of the most anticipated short distance events of the flat racing season.
At the moment, nine days before the July Cup kicks off on 9th July 2010, there are 45 possible runners on the short list for the six furlong event, although very few of them have as yet been confirmed. Still, the list indicates that the July Cup will be a worthy meeting of the fast and the furious.
Trainer Richard Hannon is considering his personal wunderkind Paco Boy as a runner in the July Cup. The five-year-old has recorded eleven wins from 19 career starts and has run a wonderful 2010 season under jockey Richard Hughes. Although he missed first place by a neck to Goldikova in the Queen Anne Stakes at the Royal Ascot Festival two weeks ago, Paco Boy is one of the fittest and most willing sprinters currently active.
Canford Cliffs, Paco Boy’s stable mate at Hannon’s training facilities, is also a possible contender in the event. Since his confident winning performance in the Royal Ascot’s St. James’s Palace Stakes the three-year-old is hailed as one of the future greats of the sport. However, should both Canford Cliffs and Paco Boy end up starters in the July Cup, jockey Hughes will face the difficult decision of choosing between these extraordinary thoroughbreds. As Hannon’s most trusted stable jockey, Hughes has competed with Canford Cliffs in all of the colt’s career starts.
Australian-bred Starspangledbanner, who has only recently joined the training stables of Aidan O’Brien, is getting ready to take on the big time once more. After racing to victory in the Golden Jubilee Stakes at the Royal Ascot Festival, the four-year-old’s connections are confident their charge will make an impact in the internationally acclaimed sprint race. Smashing the six furlong of the Jubilee Stakes in 1 minute and 12.57 seconds, Starspangledbanner proved beyond discussion that he has what it takes to race with the big boys and give them a run for their money. The colt is rumoured to be taking to the track under jockey Johnny Murtagh.
Society Rock, who trains at the stables of James Fanshawe, might also be heading to the July Cup – to reclaim the laurels he lost to Starspangledbanner. The three-year-old was runner-up by 1 ¾ lengths in the Golden Jubilee Cup and his connections are sure he will be able to take back his honour in another duel with the Australian super-sprinter. After wowing crowds at Royal Ascot with his Jubilee performance belying his 50-1 odds, Society Rock is now ready to meet the spectators expectations – and potentially outrun them.
William Hill is offering excellent antepost odds on the July Cup (9th July 2010). Make sure to check the odds closer to the race date as they are liable to change as the line-up for the race finalises.