Prince aiming for Acomb glory
View from connections ahead of Wednesday's Tattersalls Acomb Stakes at York.
Ed Dunlop's Prince Gagarin aims to follow in the footsteps of his half-brother Elusive Pimpernel by winning the Tattersalls Acomb Stakes at York on Wednesday.
Elusive Pimpernel won the race impressively in 2007 and was well fancied for the following season's 2000 Guineas after also winning the Craven Stakes.
He was trained by John Dunlop for Cristina Patino's Windflower Holdings operation and the pair jointly own Prince Gagarin.
Third in a good Newbury maiden on his debut, he won a three-runner novice event at Newmarket last time out.
"We'll try to emulate his half-brother but it looks fiercely competitive," said Dunlop.
"He's done nothing wrong, he ran a nice race in his maiden and then won his novice race, although that form hasn't worked out.
"We're still learning about him so we'll just see how he gets on. You often get some nice horses running in it and this year looks no exception.
"Mr (Aidan) O'Brien is bringing one over (Jamaica) which will no doubt be favourite and Richard Hannon's horse (Basateen) won a maiden by a very long way."
Basateen won at Doncaster by eight lengths and Hannon told www.richardhannonracing.co.uk: "We like Basateen a lot and he confirmed the promise he showed first time out at Newmarket when bolting up in his maiden at Doncaster by eight lengths.
"Now he has to prove he is a Group horse, but we think he is."
William Buick rides Dutch Connection for Charles Hills having won a valuable Goodwood maiden on him in fine style.
He had previouly been no match for John Gosden's exciting Faydhan at Haydock.
Buick wrote in his At The Races blog: "This is never a soft Group race but it looks extremely competitive this year with the highest-rated in the race being Chadic off 100.
"My horse is on 87, only 4lb behind the second in, Salateen, and while there are some unknown quantities amongst the others I got a good feel off Dutch Connection when I rode him for the second time, which was at Goodwood at the beginning of August.
"When I partnered him previously at Haydock over six he couldn't get to grips with the exciting Faydhan, but at Goodwood he travelled smoothly and definitely appreciated the seventh furlong.
"I'm sure he's going to come on again and although he handled the undulations at Goodwood, I reckon that a galloping track like York will suit him even better.
"I'd have respect for Peter Chapple-Hyam's Misleading who I won on at the same Goodwood meeting and I liked Prince Gagarin when he finished ahead of me at Newmarket last time but I'm happy to be with Dutch Connection."
Brian Meehan's Growl won his only race at Ascot and looks an exciting type for a trainer whose horses generally improve greatly for their first outing.
He told his website: "Growl (was) expected to run a big race on his debut in what looked a very good maiden at Ascot and he duly delivered, producing a smart turn of foot to put the race to bed with something in hand.
"(He) takes a step up in class here, but we have been very pleased with him since that success, and we anticipate another high level performance."