Newmarket 2000 Guineas - 30th April 2011 

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Fahey in Race Against Time to Have Bassett Ready for 2000 Guineas

Richard Fahey has issued a warning to punters considering backing his unbeaten Wootton Bassett for the Qipco 2000 Guineas on April 30, suggesting that his stable star is only 50-50 to make the line-up for the big race, writes Elliot Slater.

Wootton Bassett
© Racehorse Photos


The Malton-based handler has faced an uphill struggle to have the Iffraaj colt ready in time for the first colts' classic of the season having been held up earlier in the year for three weeks, a vital period when the three-year-old wasn't even able to canter. Although he appears in tremendous shape at present, Fahey noted that Wootton Bassett was blowing hard after his most recent training gallop and wonders whether he will have him 100% fit to take his chance against the cream of the crop at HQ. If he isn't in tip-top condition the Irishman has made it clear that the colt will not run. Fahey intends to give the unbeaten classic prospect another gallop later this week after which the picture should be somewhat clearer. Those following the horse racing betting should keep a close eye on his progress.

Last term Wootton Bassett completed a hat-trick of wins with victory in the tremendously valuable DBS Yearling Stakes at York in August, after which he followed up by winning the even more lucrative Weatherbys Insurance Stakes (worth £193,000 to the winner) at Doncaster in September. Stepped up to Group 1 company on 'Arc' day at Longchamp in October, owner Frank Brady's pride and joy proved too strong for Tin Soldier, winning the Grand Criterium by two-and-a-half lengths and stamping himself as a genuine classic contender for 2011. The 2000 Guineas betting indicates he is something of an outsider, but he may have a chance if he gets back to his best.

A winner on good to firm ground and also capable of handling a soft surface as he proved in France, Wootton Bassett is currently a best priced 14/1 chance to win the 2000 Guineas, a race for which Frankel remains the 10/11 favourite.

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