/ Racing

John Gosden boasts strong hand in Great Voltigeur Stakes at York

Updated: Wednesday, 02 Jul 2014 18:43 | Comments

The lightly-raced Eagle Top won the King Edward VII Stakes at Royal Ascot on just his third start
The lightly-raced Eagle Top won the King Edward VII Stakes at Royal Ascot on just his third start

John Gosden's possible Ladbrokes St Leger contenders Romsdal, Forever Now and Eagle Top have all been given entries in the Neptune Investment Management Great Voltigeur Stakes at York on 20 August.

The Group Two is usually the strongest trial for the season's final British Classic, which Gosden has landed twice in the last four years.

Eagle Top recently took the King Edward VII Stakes at Royal Ascot, while Romsdal is at the top of the Leger betting after finishing third in the Investec Derby. Forever Now has already been given a good mention by his trainer after landing a Doncaster maiden.

Both Eagle Top and Forever Now are owned by Carole Bamford, and it has been suggested the former could be supplemented for the King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot on 26 July.

Bamford's racing manager Hugo Lascelles said: "We're waiting to see what happens with Eagle Top. The King George has been mooted and he has been given an entry in the Voltigeur. We'll wait and see, but he won't be running in the Leger.

"Forever Now might run at Newmarket next week in the Bahrain Trophy, but he could end up running at York."

Other interesting entries are Sirius, trained in Germany by Andreas Lowe, while Mark Johnston's Hartnell and Michael Stoute's Cannock Chase were also Royal Ascot winners.

Aidan O'Brien has a handful of potential runners and Granddukeoftuscany could be one, as the trainer said after his facile recent win at Tipperary: "We'll train him for the Great Voltigeur and he'll get a rest after this."

Promising John Oxx-trained colt Streetcar To Stars would be another to note. Beaten a nose in a Listed race on just his second racecourse outing, the son of Sea The Stars had no trouble losing his maiden tag at the Curragh last week and is expected to get a Leger entry.

Royal winners in Gimcrack mix

Star juveniles The Wow Signal, Baitha Alga and Hootenanny feature in an 88-strong entry for the £200,000 Irish Thoroughbred Marketing Gimcrack Stakes on 23 August.

The trio all won at Royal Ascot, in the Coventry, Norfolk and Windsor Castle Stakes respectively, although The Wow Signal and Baitha Alga are unlikely to run against each other as both are in the ownership of Al Shaqab Racing. The Prix Morny is another option.

American ace Hootenanny, trained by Wesley Ward, is also in the Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes 24 hours earlier.

Promising Hugo Palmer colt Aktabantay got off the mark at Newcastle and has been given the York engagement, as has David Brown's Norfolk runner-up Mind Of Madness and impressive Roger Varian-trained Yarmouth maiden winner Belardo.

Coventry second Cappella Sansevero (Ger Lyons) has been beaten since by Kool Kompany (Richard Hannon) in the Railway Stakes at the Curragh and the duo could renew rivalry.

The Great War and War Envoy are two of Aidan O'Brien's possibles.

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