Sky Bet Great Voltigeur Stakes
| Group 2, York 15:00
1m 3f 188y, Class 1
1 Yibir 6/1
2 The Mediterranean 16/1
3 Youth Spirit 8/1
8 ran Distances: 1¼l, ½l, nse
Time: 2m 28.27s (fast by 1.03s)
Yibir goes from last to first to land the Group 2 @SkyBet— RacingBetter (@RacingBetter) August 18, 2021
Great Voltigeur Stakes under @the_doyler for Charlie Appleby and @godolphin @yorkracecoursepic.twitter.com/tfRa9sszOk
https://t.co/DJ6FwYxojo via @RacingBetter
The Dubawi gelding Yibir was the second string for Godolphin and trainer Charlie Appleby behind Kemari after finishing unplaced in the Gordon Stakes, but came out on top with an emphatic display in this Group Two over a mile and a half.
The Mediterranean, one of three runners for trainer Aidan O’Brien, set the pace and did not give up the lead without a fight but he finally had to give way to Yibir.
The 6-1 shot, who had won the Bahrain Trophy at Newmarket’s July meeting, was produced by James Doyle to hit the front in the final furlong and pull away to score by a length and a quarter. The Mediterranean held on for second by half a length from Youth Spirit, who just held Sir Lucan for third spot.
Appleby said: “Everyone is asking me if it was a surprise, but the rule of thumb is I try not to run them if I don’t think they’re going to run well. It doesn’t always work out, mind you!
“He’s been such a great work horse and has danced every dance.
“We put him in those (Derby) trials for a reason in the spring – we really fancied him as being a proper mile-and-a-half horse.
“We’ve had our quirks with him – he’s been gelded and we’ve had the hood on and the hood off.
“We were delighted with him on his first start after the gelding operation in the Bahrain Trophy, but he still tended to have a little wander, and then at Goodwood he just latched on and ran his race the wrong way round.
“The plan today was to put the hood on and I told James to bury him, so he can learn to do things the right way round going forward.
“He’s got a lot of potential and it’s just about trying to get him on his right day.
“His constitution is a credit to himself as he’s had plenty of racing and doesn’t miss out in the mornings.”
On future plans, the trainer added: “It was always the plan after this to hopefully go to America with him for the Jockey Club Stakes at Belmont – a three-year-old race over a mile and a half.
“He’s a gelding now, so he’ll up for a bit of travelling and we’ll have a bit of fun with him.”
Great Voltigeur Stakes (Group 2)
£150,000 added, 3yo only, 1m 3f 188y, Class 1
POS. (DRAW) DIST HORSE AGE WGT TRAINER JOCKEY SP
1 (4) Yibir 3 9-0 Charlie Appleby James Doyle 6/1
2 (5) 1¼ The Mediterranean 3 9-0 A P O'Brien Wayne Lordan 16/1
3 (3) ½ Youth Spirit 3 9-0 Andrew Balding Tom Marquand 8/1
4 (6) nse Sir Lucan 3 9-0 A P O'Brien Frankie Dettori 4/1
5 (2) ½ Scope 3 9-0 Ralph Beckett Rob Hornby 28/1
6 (1) 5½ High Definition 3 9-0 A P O'Brien Ryan Moore 7/2F
7 (8) hd Third Realm 3 9-0 Roger Varian Andrea Atzeni 5/1
8 (7) 2½ Kemari 3 9-3 Charlie Appleby William BuicK 4/1