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Five head-to-heads we could see in 2020

7 Aug 2020

We've selected five battles we're hoping to see unfold in the remainder of the 2020 season

The 2020 Series might have had a delayed start due to the Covid-19 pandemic, however since its return we have been served up some magnificent performances of the highest level. And long may it continue!

With plenty still to come including York’s Ebor Festival, the St Leger Meeting at Doncaster, and of course, Britain’s Richest Raceday – QIPCO British Champions Day – we’re hoping to see much more racing theatre in the remaining months.

As we enter August, we’ve picked out some of the battles we will hopefully see in the second half of the season.

Mohaather vs Kameko (the rematch) QEII Stakes (sponsored by QIPCO), Ascot

The Qatar Sussex Stakes had the best line-up of the year on paper, with QIPCO 2000 Guineas winner Kameko headlining a field that also contained Siskin, the winner of the Tattersalls Irish 2000 Guineas, Queen Anne Stakes winner Circus Maximus and rising-star Mohaather.

That race certainly didn’t disappoint, but with Kameko’s route in running blocked off, a rematch to truly have bragging rights over the mile division is what every racing fan would like to see.

Mohaather’s connections seem set on going for the QEII in October on QIPCO British Champions Day, and Qatar Racing’s Kameko will hopefully head that way as well.

Enable vs Love Darley Yorkshire Oaks, York

The Champion vs the Champion-elect? This would pit all the Group 1 experience and talent of Enable against the up-and-coming filly on the block.

Enable bounced back to winning ways last time in the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth QIPCO Stakes after going down to Ghayyaith in the Coral-Eclipse. Love, on the other hand, has burst on to the scene as a top prospect having won the QIPCO 1000 Guines nicely, and then doubling her Classic tally the following month by crushing the Investec Oaks field in style.

It would be fascinating to see these two hugely talented horse do battle. That date seems just over the horizon with York’s Darley Yorkshire Oaks providing the perfect opportunity. Two tough fillies, going to-to-toe on the Knavesmire peaks the interest of any racing fan.

But who would triumph?

Oxted vs Hello Youmzain Sprint Cup, Haydock

Two talented sprinters, both with Group 1’s to their name and both in the hands of young up-and-coming stars of the weighing room in Cieran Fallon Jnr and Kevin Stott.

Oxted gained his first Group 1 in style in the Darley July Cup with a taking run and beat plenty of top-class sprinters along the way. Similarly impressive, Hello Youmzain showed his fighting spirit at Royal Ascot to win the Diamond Jubilee. He also lost nothing in defeat in the July Cup, finishing 5th.

Going back to the Sprint Cup seems the logical path for Kevin Ryan’s star, and defending the Sprint Cup trophy he claimed 12 months ago. Oxted would also surely land there for a battle of the young guns in the North West.

Serpentine vs English King vs Mogul Derby rematch St Leger, Doncaster

A lot has been made of this year’s Investec Derby and the manner of which it was won by Serpentine. He seemed to get a very easy lead by the rest of the field, and it has certainly left many with questions to be answered. Was it simply a case of Serpentine getting too much rope? Was Serpentine the best horse? Did we get to see the best of English King and Mogul?

Well, those Classic-form questions could be answered on September 12th at Doncaster in the final Classic of the season. Both English King and Mogul were well-fancied for the Epsom Derby, but ultimately couldn’t get involved at the finish. They took each other on again at Glorious Goodwood, with Mogul looking like a step up in trip might help. English King again failed to live up to the promise he showed in his Lingfield Derby Trial.

It would be a fascinating rematch on Town Moor.

Magical vs Addeybb Champions Day rematch QIPCO Champion Stakes, Ascot

These two battled out a thrilling finish in this race last season at Ascot. They both look likely to return again all being well and it would be fascinating to see them renew that rivalry.

Both horses have been in top form this year. Magical once again winning the Tattersalls Gold Cup at The Curragh with the ease and class we have come to expect from this mare.

Addeybb has arguably had his best year. Trainer William Haggas decided to travel to Australia with his gelding and was rewarded with two Group 1 victories.

Any rain would, as always, be welcomed by the Addeybb camp. However, Magical has proven herself a versatile mare, and it will take a special performance to beat her in October.