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Group 1 winners light up Darley July Cup field

9 Jul 2020

Hello Youmzain and Golden Horde oppose each other in competitive renewal of young and old

A talented field of 13 will head to post for the Darley July Cup at Newmarket’s July meeting this Saturday.

The field consists of multiple big-race winners and none more so than the winner of the Diamond Jubilee Stakes, Hello Youmzain. The four-year-old was giving jockey Kevin Stott his first Royal Ascot win as well as first Group 1 win and the pair will be well fancied again this Saturday.

The winner of the other six-furlong sprint at the Royal meeting, Golden Horde will also head to post after his commanding victory in the Commonwealth Cup. Clive Cox and Adam Kirby know all about teaming up with sprinters in this race having won it twice before with Lethal Force and Harry Angel.

The past three runnings of the Darley July Cup have been won by three-year-olds and last year the Classic generation were responsible for the first five home – a good omen for Clive Cox’s sprinter.

Last year’s champion apprentice Cieren Fallon Jr. is hoping Oxted can provide him with a dream first Group 1 triumph by landing the Darley July Cup at Newmarket on Saturday. Fallon Jr. is still able to claim 3lb in the majority of races but the status of the showpiece sprint, which forms part of the 35-race QIPCO British Champions Series, means he has to compete on level terms.

Fallon Jr. guided Oxted to victory in the William Hill Portland Handicap at Doncaster in September and was also on board him when he won the Group 3 Betway Abernant Stakes on his return at Newmarket last month.

Fallon Jr. believes the absence of any spectators will be a bonus for the horse: “He has his quirks and we have the hood on him in the parade ring. The crowd not being there is a big help to him as he can get a little worked up beforehand.”

Hello Youmzain’s win in the Diamond Jubilee could prove to be a good form guide as three of the first four home all re-oppose each other here.

Irish sprint sensation, Sceptical was third in the Royal Ascot Group 1 and will be looking to overturn that result this time out. Trained by Denis Hogan in Ireland, Sceptical changed hands for just 2,800gns last year as an unraced three-year-old and has already proved a lucrative purchase. He will again be ridden by Frankie Dettori, still searching for an elusive first win in the July Cup.

Fourth place in the Diamond Jubilee went to Khadeem and he will also be looking to reverse that form for trainer, Charlie Hills.

Brando, the 2017 Prix Maurice De Gheest winner, will be running in his fourth July Cup for Kevin Ryan. He beat all bar U S Navy Flag in the 2018 renewal and chased home Judicial at Newcastle last time out.

Threat scooped two Group 2 prizes as a juvenile last year – including when beating Lord Of The Lodge in the Al Basti equiworld Dubai Gimcrack Stakes at York – and drops back in distance after finishing fifth on his return over a. mile in the St James’s Palace Stakes. Conversely, Equilateral moves up in distance after chasing home Battaash, his brilliant stablemate, in the King’s Stand Stakes.

German-trained challenger Namos, winner of two pattern races in his native country this year, adds international flavour, while Sir Dancealot gets the opportunity to try and improve on the fourth place he managed in the 2018 July Cup.

Shine So Bright ounds out the field of 13 and will be looking to return to some sort of form after a disappointing run in the Diamond Jubilee where he could only manage tenth.