Skybet York Stakes 2012  

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Planteur a Contender for Sky Bet York Stakes

This year’s renewal of the £100,000 Group Two Sky Bet York Stakes (3.10pm) promises to be another superb race after 21 horses were entered for the highlight of racing at York this Saturday, July 28.

© Racehorse Photos


Group One winner Planteur is set to head to the Knavesmire for the extended 10-furlong contest following excellent efforts in some of the world’s premier middle-distance contests.

The Marco Botti-trained five-year-old currently heads the betting with SkyBet at 5/1 alongside the Luca Cumani-trained Afsare, a Group One runner-up in Italy earlier this season.

Planteur beat Sarafina, Cirrus Des Aigles and Cape Blanco in the Group One Prix Ganay at Longchamp, France, in April, 2011 and finished strongly to take third in the Group One Dubai World Cup at Meydan, Dubai, in March this year.

He was third on his European return in the Group One Prix d’Ispahan at Longchamp in May before fading to seventh in the Group One Prince Of Wales’s Stakes at Royal Ascot on June 20.

Botti revealed: “Planteur is a likely runner in the Sky Bet York Stakes at the weekend. We want to check the ground and as long as it’s not firm ground and it’s safe he will take his chance.

“He has been in good form since his run at Royal Ascot. He will have had a bit more time between races when he runs at the weekend and I think that is what he wants. I think he is a horse who likes to be a little bit fresh, but he looks well and I have been happy with him.

“I was a little bit disappointed with his run at Ascot but, for some reason or another, he did the same thing the year before and maybe the three weeks between the Prix d’Ispahan and the Prince Of Wales’s Stakes was not enough time for him.

“Unfortunately, it was the only day at Royal Ascot when the ground was on the quick side of good and that didn’t help. It’s also a possibility that he doesn’t like Ascot, so his performance could have been down to a number of things.

“Prior to that he had been in good form this season, finishing third in the Dubai World Cup and the Prix d’Ispahan, so let’s just hope he returns to his best. If he does you would like to think he will go close on Saturday, because he has the class and for me he is a Group One horse.”

Botti may also be represented in the Sky Bet York Stakes by 20/1 chance Marcret, who won the Group Three Huxley Stakes at Chester on May 10 prior to coming home fifth behind Side Glance over an extended mile in the Group Three Diomed Stakes at Epsom on June 1.

The trainer added: “We will keep an eye on the race for Marcret and see how many runners there are because it would be a big ask for him.

“He is a very genuine horse who always tries his best and I’m sure York will suit him better than Epsom, but it’s a very competitive race and we will just see how many declare before making a decision on Thursday.

“He doesn’t mind cut in the ground, but he has run some good races on good to firm ground, so I think he is a versatile horse.”

Jet Away
© Racehorse Photos

Jet Away
Sir Henry Cecil won last year’s race with Twice Over, who returned to York for a famous victory in the Group One Juddmonte International a month later. The trainer could be represented this time by another Khalid Abdulla homebred, Jet Away, an easy nine-length winner of a conditions race on the Knavesmire in October.

The five-year-old, an 8/1 chance with Sky Bet, beat subsequent Group Two winner Fiorente in a Goodwood Listed contest in May but could only finish third in another Listed race over a mile and a half at Pontefract on his latest start on June 24.

Lord Grimthorpe, racing manager to Khalid Abdulla, commented: “Jet Away is likely to run in the Sky Bet York Stakes. He has been in great form recently and he is dropping back to his correct trip on hopefully his preferred ground as well.

“I think the ground will be decent at York and that will suit. His form shows that he is up to the standard of Saturday’s race and if he races up to the form that saw him beat Fiorente earlier in the season it will be very nice.”

Colombian, a Group Three winner at Sandown in April, could line up for in-form trainer John Gosden, while fellow Newmarket handler Michael Bell has entered French Group Two victor Allied Powers and Wigmore Hall, who scored in the Grade One Northern Dancer Turf Stakes in Canada last season.

Godolphin captured the Sky Bet York Stakes with Stage Gift (2007) and Kirklees (2009) and the racing operation has four entries including the Mahmood Al Zarooni-trained Dubai Prince, a ready winner of a nine-furlong conditions race at York on July 13.

Perennial Group One performer Sri Putra and Pekan Star have both been given entries by Roger Varian, while other notable potential contenders include the Hughie Morrison-trained Sagramor and Ransom Note, a Group Two winner for Charlie Hills.

A seven-race card, sponsored entirely by Sky Bet and, also features the fiercely competitive £50,000 Sky Bet Dash (3.45pm) and the 34 entries for the six-furlong handicap include recent Newmarket heritage handicap scorer Fulbright, who is one of three co-favourites at 10/1 with Sky Bet.

SkyBet York Stakes - latest prices from Sky Bet

5/1 Afsare, Planteur, 8/1 Jet Away, Colombian, 10/1 Side Glance, Dubai Prince, 12/1 Sagramor, 14/1 Ransom Note, Retrieve, 16/1 Lay Time, Sri Putra, Premio Loco, Hunter’s Light, Wigmore Hall, 20/1 Farhaan, Marcret, 25/1 Sandagiyr, Allied Powers, Barefoot Lady, 50/1 Pekan Star, 200/1 Self Employed

Each way 1/4 odds, 1, 2, 3


Sky Bet York Stakes (Group 2)
£100,000 added, 3yo plus, 1m 2f 88y, Class 1
21 entries
Going: Good to Firm

Form Horse Age Wt Trainer
244-421 Afsare 22 5 9-2 L M Cumani
0-21500 Allied Powers (IRE) 21 7 9-2 M L W Bell
421-150 Colombian (IRE) 38 4 9-2 J H M Gosden
1/10-001 Dubai Prince (IRE) 15 4 9-2 Mahmood Al Zarooni
611-630 Hunter's Light (IRE) 35 4 9-2 Saeed bin Suroor
214-113 Jet Away 34 5 9-2 Sir H R A Cecil
3-36515 Marcret (ITY) 57 5 9-2 M Botti
1/1060-0 Pekan Star 57 5 9-2 Roger Varian
450-330 Planteur (IRE) 38 5 9-2 M Botti
120-110 Premio Loco (USA) 39 8 9-2 C F Wall
5100-05 Ransom Note 70 5 9-2 C Hills
55-1353 Retrieve (AUS) 14 5 9-2 Saeed bin Suroor
21100-2 Sagramor 58 4 9-2 H Morrison
00-1400 Sandagiyr (FR) 13 4 9-2 Saeed bin Suroor
23/2-4 Self Employed 9 5 9-2 G Woodward
40-5313 Side Glance 39 5 9-2 A M Balding
00-1650 Sri Putra 21 6 9-2 Roger Varian
0-64430 Wigmore Hall (IRE) 38 5 9-2 M L W Bell
4-44346 Barefoot Lady (IRE) 15 4 8-13 R A Fahey
241-530 Lay Time 15 4 8-13 A M Balding
2115-4 Farhaan 70 3 8-6 J L Dunlop


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