sport

Sansevero sent to the Tower

Views from connection ahead of Sunday's Nestle Supporting Irish Autism Action Round Tower Stakes at the Curragh.

Ger Lyons is hopeful star juvenile Cappella Sansevero can get back on the winning trail in Sunday's Nestle Supporting Irish Autism Action Round Tower Stakes at the Curragh.

The Showcasing colt has enjoyed a superb season thus far, winning his first three starts before finding only top-class The Wow Signal too strong in the Coventry Stakes at Royal Ascot.

Lyons was keen to take the blame for his disappointing showing in the Railway Stakes on his next appearance and he bounced back to form as the trainer expected when finishing a close third in the Phoenix Stakes three weeks ago.

A positive showing this weekend could earn Cappella Sansevero a return to Group One level in the Middle Park Stakes at Newmarket on October 17.

Lyons said: "He's in good order and you'd like to think he should be (hard to beat), but there is no such thing as a certainty in this game.

"I shouldn't have run him in the Railway Stakes, as I've already said, and that run is the only blemish on his record.

"He's a very straightforward horse, he's rated 113 and he should give a good account of himself.

"Hopefully this is the next step on the road to the Middle Park. That's the plan."

Andrea Atzeni will be on board Cappella Sansevero for the first time this weekend, his first significant ride for owners Qatar Racing since it was announced last week that he would take over from current retained jockey Jamie Spencer next year.

Atzeni also rides the Lyons-trained two-year-old Sacrificial and Eddie Lynam's Dance Design Stakes contender Pearl Of Africa for Sheikh Fahad's burgeoning empire on Sunday's card.

Sheikh Fahad's racing manager David Redvers said: "Sheikh Fahad thought it would be a good idea for Andrea to go to ride the two two-year-olds as he will be riding them next year.

"There was little point in Jamie travelling to Ireland for just the one ride (Pearl Of Africa), so Andrea rides him as well."

Cappella Sansevero is the star turn in a seven-strong Group Three field.

Aidan O'Brien relies on Railway Stakes third War Envoy, while Rapid Applause is an interesting contender for trainer Michael O'Callaghan.

The Cork maiden winner ran well in both the Railway and the Anglesey Stakes and missed the Gimcrack at York after a dirty scope.

O'Callaghan said: "His scope seems good, so fingers crossed he goes there in good shape.

"There are only seven runners. Cappella Sansevero is the one to beat, but we can't be afraid of one horse and we're expecting our lad to go close.

"He ran a good race in the Anglesey and has improved since then, so we're looking forward to running him. We've no plans beyond this weekend. We'll see how he runs on Sunday first."

Trainer Joe Murphy admits lack of experience is a concern for Shepherd's Purse as the exciting juvenile turns out for the second successive weekend.

The Pastoral Pursuits colt made a big impression when winning in maiden company over course and distance last Saturday and is immediately stepped up to Group Three level due to a lack of suitable opportunities.

Murphy said: "It might be coming a bit soon for him, but if you look at the calendar there aren't a lot of races left for him to run in. He's come out of last week's race well and there is no reason not to run him.

"You'd prefer to have a bit more experience before taking on the bette r horses as he might be a bit green, but the only way to get rid of that greenness is to run him in the better races.

"If he runs a nice race, we'll be happy, and I'm sure whatever he does he'll learn from it. That's the way we're looking at it."

Maiden winners Invincible Diamond and Blackbriar add further strength in depth.

It took Tommy Stack's Blackbriar seven attempts to get off the mark, but she did so in style at Cork earlier in the month and connections are hoping she can enhance her value by picking up some black type.

Fozzy Stack, the trainer's son and assistant, said: "She has plenty of experience and won well in Cork the last day.

"I think maybe putting the cheek pieces on her helped, but this is a tougher race and if she can finish in the first three we'll be delighted."

The seven-strong field is completed by Ted Walsh's maiden Approbare.