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Karl Burke up for the Cup with Quiet Reflection

22 Jun 2016

Trainer encouraged only half a length covered first five home in the Diamond Jubilee Stakes

Karl Burke

Burke would be concerned if the ground at Newmarket came up fast. Picture courtesy of Racingfotos.com

Karl Burke has confirmed that Quiet Reflection‘s next intended run will be the Darley July Cup at Newmarket on Saturday fortnight.

The three-year-old filly justified favouritism in the Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot last Friday and Burke was encouraged that the Diamond Jubilee Stakes ended in a blanket finish 24 hours later.

“The fact that only half a length separated the first five home in the Diamond Jubilee is a positive in terms of wanting to take them on,” Burke said today.

“It’s hard to know how strong the Commonwealth Cup form will prove but it’s encouraging that last year’s winner [subsequent Darley July Cup winner Muhaarar] turned out to be a superstar and Quiet Reflection could do no more than beat the horses that were put in front of her at Ascot.”

However, Burke did offer a couple of caveats. He said: “We have to be mindful that Quiet Reflection has been on the go for a long time and she would need to be 110 per cent to run.

“It just depends how she is – we will probably leave it until the confirmation stage, five days before the race, before making a decision. Every time she’s run there has been some give in the ground so her ability to handle anything quicker is an unknown. If it came up fast at Newmarket that would come into consideration.”

Quiet Reflection is among 36 horses who remain in the July Cup following yesterday’s scratching stage.

Meanwhile, Acapulco, who missed Royal Ascot last week  because of the softish ground, is set to have another crack at the Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes.

American trainer Wesley Ward reports the three-year-old filly to be heading to the Knavesmire on August 19 in a bid to atone for finishing second to Mecca’s Angel last year after leading until the last 50 yards.

“We are excited about Acapulco going,” Ward said. “Unfortunately the ground was against her at Ascot. We are crossing our fingers that hopefully we get some sunshine at York.

“She ran a beautiful race on the going there last year. I think she’s a bigger, stronger, faster filly this year and will pack a lot more weight than she did last year. She’s a big, strong filly and I think she can handle it.”

Ward has also given an entry to Lady Aurelia, but this year’s impressive Queen Mary winner is more likely to head to France for the Prix Morny.

“We are just keeping the options open, but she’s 90 per cent going to the Morny in France. Everything’s fine with her after Ascot,” he said.

“She took to the going which is always a question with every two-year-old I’ve raced. She’s a tremendous filly and should have a big future.”

Three other Royal Ascot two-year-old winners – John Gosden’s Ardad (Windsor Castle), the Aidan O’Brien-trained Caravaggio (Coventry Stakes) and Prince Of Lir (Norfolk) – are among the 44 Nunthorpe contenders.

A clash of the generations is on the cards in the Juddmonte International on August 17.

Coronation Cup hero Postponed and Prince of Wales’s winner My Dream Boat are among the older horses in the 40-strong entry as well as last year’s winner Arabian Queen.

Aidan O’Brien can choose from a host of top-class three-year-olds, headed by Derby runner-up US Army Ranger, Derby third, Idaho, Dante second Deauville, French 2000 Guineas winner The Gurkha, Ribblesdale scorer Even Song and Minding, winner of the 1000 Guineas and Oaks.

Found, Even Song and Minding are among O’Brien’s entries in the Darley Yorkshire Oaks on August 18 in which the Jim Bolger-trained Pleascach could try to repeat her victory of 2015 in this mile-and-a-half Group One.

There a total of 37 possibles, including Musidora winner So Mi Dar, Investec Oaks second and third Architecture and Harlequeen, Duke of Cambridge Stakes runner-up Furia Cruzada, Simple Verse and Speedy Boarding.