MARQ MY WORDS
Tom bullish over Alenquer Eclipse bid
TOM MARQUAND is confident Alenquer can be right in the mix in Saturday’s Coral-Eclipse at Sandown.
The race is gearing up to be a superb renewal with French Derby hero Vadeni and Irish 2,000 Guineas winner Native Trail heading the market.
Bay Bridge and State Of Rest are among the possibles from the older generation.
But Alenquer is another fouryear-old with a serious chance, and he advertised his talent by winning the Group One Tattersalls Gold Cup at the Curragh last month. He had State of Rest and Broome behind him, and they have both since scored at Royal Ascot
Marquand, who has ridden Alenquer in eight of his 10 starts, admits he needs to improve but he believes the colt has a couple of “strings to his bow”.
He said: “Being realistic he probably has to take another little step forward, not a leap, but there is no reason why he shouldn’t.
“Sandown is a beautiful track and it will be fair ground as they do a great job. It is a stiff 10 furlongs and he has won his Group One over a stiff 10 at The Curragh. The form of that win has also worked out well.
“We have a couple of strings to our bow in the fact he loves Sandown and that the stiff finish there should suit him perfectly again.” Coral-Eclipse: 2 Vadeni, 7-2 Native Trail, 5 Bay Bridge, 7 Mishriff, 8 Alenquer, 10 bar.
■ STATUETTE was trimmed to 10-1 favourite for the 2023 Qipco 1,000 Guineas after landing the Airlie Stud Stakes at the Curragh.