Majestic To Bid For Rockfel Glory

Day two of Newmarket's Cambridgeshire Festival plays host to five black-type heats with the Unibet-sponsored G2 Rockfel S. and G2 Joel S. sharing top billing on the seven-race card. The former contest's honour roll features a swathe of subsequent Group 1 winners since the turn of the century, headed by Classic heroines Speciosa (Ire) (Danehill Dancer {Ire}), Finsceal Beo (Ire) (Mr. Greeley) and Just The Judge (Ire) (Lawman {Fr}). However, the seven-furlong juvenile fillies' prize has never made its way to Kingsclere, and last month's G3 Sweet Solera S. victrix...

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Murphy's Law At Newmarket On Friday

   Newmarket's Friday fixture is replete with black-type events and it is Oisin Murphy who holds the key to the featured G2 Shadwell Joel S. Having partnered the impressive 2019 winner Benbatl (GB) (Dubawi {Ire}), he hands that ride to Frankie Dettori this time as he helps prepare Qatar Racing's G1 2000 Guineas winner Kameko (Kitten's Joy) for the G1 Queen Elizabeth II S. Kameko has by dint of fate and circumstance failed to make the places in three starts after his finest hour when taking that mile Classic on...

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Joel Date For Benbatl

Benbatl (GB) (Dubawi {Ire}) will make his belated return to action in Friday's G2 Joel S. at Newmarket. The 6-year-old won a pair of Group 2s at Meydan over the winter but hasn't been seen since finishing third in the Saudi Cup. He was scratched from the G2 Celebration Mile on Aug. 29 after the ground went soft. "He'll go for the Joel, he's working well and he's in good form. We've been waiting for a while to run him," said trainer Saeed bin Suroor. "We wanted to go to...

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Celebration Mile Headlines Saturday Action

Goodwood's G2 Ladbrokes Celebration Mile is the centrepiece of Europe's fayre on Saturday and has drawn a class act in Godolphin's Benbatl (GB) (Dubawi {Ire}). At his best when fresh, the 6-year-old was at his deadliest peak when taking Newmarket's G2 Joel S. by five lengths over this trip on his European bow in 2019 and sets a clear standard on that form. A triple Group 1 winner in 2018, he gave no indication that he had diminished in terms of ability when winning the Jan. 9 G2 Singspiel S....

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Military March To Follow Benbatl Route

Last year's G3 Autumn S. winner Military March (GB) (New Approach {Ire}), a leading fancy for the G1 Investec Derby before meeting with a setback in the lead-up to the race, will follow a similar path over the winter to his Saeed bin Suroor stablemate Benbatl (GB) (Dubawi {Ire}), the trainer said. Military March, last seen finishing fourth in the G1 2000 Guineas on June 6, is training towards an autumn return in Europe and will later target dirt races in Dubai. "Military March is back in light training," bin...

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Benbatl Eyeing International Return

Saeed bin Suroor's triple Group 1 winner Benbatl (GB) (Dubawi {Ire}) is back in training and eyeing the G1 Juddmonte International at York on Aug. 19 for a potential return to action. The 6-year-old, a former winner of the G1 Dubai Turf, G1 Grosser Preis Dallmayr and G1 Ladbrokes S., showed a new dimension when winning the G2 Al Maktoum Challenge R2 over the dirt at Meydan in February before finishing third in the inaugural Saudi Cup. He was favoured for the G1 Dubai World Cup before that event was...

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Benbatl Gets World Cup Green Light

Godolphin's triple Group 1 winner Benbatl (GB) (Dubawi {Ire}), third behind Maximum Security (New Year's Day) and Midnight Bisou (Midnight Lute) in last weekend's Saudi Cup, has been given the go-ahead by trainer Saeed bin Suroor to advance to the G1 Dubai World Cup on Mar. 28. A Group 1 winner in Germany and Australia, the 6-year-old Benbatl made a successful transition to the dirt on Feb. 6 when winning the G2 Al Maktoum Challenge R2 at Meydan, and he ran with great credit in Riyadh on Saturday when beaten...

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Strong Euro Challenge On Saudi Cup Card

The venue may be largely unfamiliar on the world stage but many of the runners lining up at King Abdulaziz racecourse in Riyadh on Saturday afternoon are well known across the world of racing and they include, of course, a strong challenge from Europe. The main event, the $20-million Saudi Cup over nine furlongs on the dirt, has attracted a highly competitive American contingent, including Maximum Security (New Year's Day) and Midnight Bisou (Midnight Lute), and they will be taking on two seasoned campaigners from Europe headed by the well...

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Benbatl Back A Winner At Meydan

After winning a trio of Group 1s internationally in 2018, Benbatl (GB) (Dubawi {Ire}) left his followers wondering as a 5-year-old last year. Sure, he won his belated seasonal debut, the G2 Joel S. at Newmarket on Sept. 27, by five lengths, but he was last seen trailing home last of 16 over the heavy ground in the G1 Queen Elizabeth II S. on Champions Day at Ascot on Oct. 19. The Godolphin colourbearer displayed nothing but brilliance, however, on return on Thursday in Meydan's G2 Singspiel S., taking the...

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Breeders' Cup Still Long Term Goal for Thunder Snow

Plans are currently on hold for dual G1 Dubai World Cup winner Thunder Snow (Ire) (Helmet {Aus}) after he was scratched from the GI Whitney H. on the day of the race as he spiked a temperature. He returned to Saeed bin Suroor's stable in Newmarket on Tuesday--and while the Breeders' Cup is still on the agenda, where he runs before then is up in the air. "He got back from Saratoga today," said Bin Suroor. "The horse ran a temperature, which was why we had to scratch him from...

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