Burke’s sure Laurens can make them all go
KARL Burke is confident Laurens remains in peak condition ahead of her bid for further big-race glory in the Kingdom Of Bahrain Sun Chariot Stakes at Newmarket.
It will be exactly five months today since the popular filly kicked off her campaign by finishing second in the 1000 Guineas over this course and distance, and she has been campaigned exclusively at the highest level all year.
Successive Group One wins in the Prix SaintAlary and the Prix de Diane in France were followed by a disappointing first run over a mile and a half in the Yorkshire Oaks.
However, she got back on the winning trail when inflicting a shock defeat on the now-retired Alpha Centauri in the Matron Stakes at Leopardstown three weeks ago, and she sticks to a mile this weekend.
Burke said: “It’s another tough race, but she’s more than entitled to be there.
“She seems in great form. She came back from Leopardstown well, the couple of bits of work she’s done since the Matron have been good and she’s looks great, so there’s nothing to suggest the season is catching up with her.
“The French filly (Wind Chimes) looks the one to beat, but if Laurens is at the top of her game then whatever beats her will deserve to.”
Wind Chimes is rated 4lb higher than Laurens, having produced a career- best performance to finish a close second behind Recoletos in last month’s Prix du Moulin de Longchamp.
Trainer Andre Fabre, who claimed the Sun Chariot three years ago with Esoterique, supplemented Wind Chimes for this year’s renewal on Monday and expects his filly to make her presence felt.
Fabre said: “She will run well, I’m sure of that. She showed form against the colts last time out, that gives us hope that she is well up to running a big race.
“As for the ground, she acts very well on soft ground, but she also has some top-class form on good ground as well. On all known form we can’t beat Laurens, but she did get beaten at Newmarket in the Guineas, so we’ll see.”
After finishing third in the Coronation Stakes at Royal Ascot and the Nassau Stakes at Goodwood, the Sir Michael Stoute-trained Veracious enjoyed a confidence-boosting success in the Group Three Atalanta Stakes at Sandown on her latest appearance, earning her a return to Group One company.
In great form: Laurens, ridden by Daniel Tudhope, (right) wins the Coolmore Fastnet Rock Matron Stakes