The opportunity to go to stud with another G1 race attached to an already impressive record has been presented to Godolphin’s Impending in the Doomben 10,000 in Brisbane on Saturday.
Trainer James Cummings is satisfied the four-year-old son of Lonhro has recovered fully from his first-up exertions in the G2 Victory Stakes at the same course two weeks ago and is looking forward to Impending adding the 10,000 to his G1 Stradbroke Handicap victory of 12 months ago.
“He galloped strongly during the week and looks to have absorbed his first-up effort as the targets become increasingly difficult,” Cummings said.
“But he’s trimmed up nicely as expected from his emphatic first up win in the Victory Stakes and he’s enjoyed a good couple of weeks since his last run.
“This is a top-class weight-for-age event and it will be very satisfying to see Impending race at his best.”
One of the most talented and consistent members of Godolphin’s Australian team, Impending (Damien Browne) has won four races, three of them Stakes level, and has only finished further back than fourth in one of his 15 starts.
He’s amassed close to A$2 million in prizemoney and has established himself as a worthy member of a star-studded family.
Impending has the pedigree to back his racetrack abilities. His dam, the Encosta De Lago mare Mnemosyne, won six races including the G1 Flight Stakes and G1 Thousand Guineas.
Impending is one of her five winners from six foals to race, a group that includes his three-year-old sister Epidemic who began her latest campaign with a stunning victory at Randwick last week.
“From any point of view there is a lot to like about Impending,” Cummings said.
“As a racehorse he is in the top bracket, he looks the part and he has a great family that makes him a really great stallion prospect.”
If he is to win on Saturday, Impending will have to produce one of his best performances to overcome such talented opposition as the Everest winner Redzel, the multiple G1 winners Le Romain and Lucky Hussler and the class fillies English and Houtzen.
Godolphin trainer Charlie Appleby can loosen Aidan O’Brien’s stanglehold on the Centennial Celebration – MBNA Chester Vase Stakes with Ispolini.
O’Brien has won this Group Three contest for the last five years and while he fields three in the extended 12-furlong heat, it is Appleby’s runner who can take centre stage on the first day of the Chester Cup meeting.
Ispolini has actually already beaten O’Brien’s reopposing Hunting Horn once this term, with the pair finishing second and third in the Sandown Classic Trial last month.
Just a length and a quarter separated them at the line, but given Ispolini was making his seasonal bow that day and Hunting Horn had a previous run, you would expect the Godolphin runner to make greater strides for that outing.
Ispolini won one of his two juvenile outings last year, claiming a 10-furlong all-weather maiden in November, so clearly he is still a bit of a dark horse at present, despite his rating of 106.
Hailing from a family which includes the likes of Nathaniel and Great Heavens, it would be reasonable to expect this Dubawi colt to really come into his own over middle distances and his current odds for the Investec Derby would likely be slashed if he does the business here.
Dramatically should ensure O’Brien does not go home empty-handed by winning the Arkle Finance Cheshire Oaks.
She takes a hike in trip after finishing ninth in the Nell Gwyn on her return, with eventual 1000 Guineas heroine Billesdon Brook one of those to come home in front of her.
Dramatically’s pedigree suggests she might appreciate more of a test, though, with her dam Wonder Of Wonders actually winning this race back in 2011 before going on to be second in the Oaks at Epsom.
She will have to improve, but this Listed heat could be within her compass.
Charlie Appleby feels Soliloquy’s superior pace could give her the edge over stablemate Wild Illusion in the Qipco 1000 Guineas at Newmarket on Sunday.
The affable trainer will head to the Rowley Mile in search of a first British Classic success and fires a formidable twin assault at the fillies’ showpiece.
Wild Illusion brings the stronger form to the table, having struck Group One glory as a two-year-old in the Prix Marcel Boussac at Chantilly.
However, jockey William Buick has sided with Soliloquy, who made an impressive reappearance in the Nell Gwyn at Newmarket less than three weeks ago.
Appleby said: “We’re very happy with both fillies.
“William rode Soliloquy in the Nell Gwyn and rode her in plenty of work before that. He was always very happy with her and she shows more pace than Wild Illusion, but Wild Illusion has never been a work horse, so it was a hard decision for him.
“Visually, on race evidence, Soliloquy has got a bit more of a pace angle, whereas with Wild Illusion we are working back from an Oaks with her.
“Wild Illusion is ready to run and she brings Group One form into the race.”
James Doyle will partner Wild Illusion, just as he did on each of her three starts last season.