2019 St Leger Preview
The final Classic of the season takes place at Doncaster next month and from looking at the early betting for the race, it looks like it could be a wide-open contest at Town Moor, with a couple of Aidan O’Brien colts taking a prominent position at the top end of the market.
Although the St Leger is a fantastic race in its own right, it’s hard to believe that at the start of the season, this contest was a target for Japan or Anthony Van Dyck. But given the way they have both shaped up through the campaign, this 1m6f trip looks like it will suit both of them.
Japan is a horse who got better with every run this season. He ran a huge race in the Derby, finishing a close third behind his stablemate Anthony Van Dyck and Madhmoon when going off at 20/1. He was then victorious at Royal Ascot in the King Edward VII Stakes in what was one of the most impressive performances of the week at the royal meeting.
Japan becomes supersire Galileo’s 80th Group/Grade 1 winner with victory in the Juddmonte Grand Prix de Paris at Longchamp pic.twitter.com/gPdZ4RcE55
— Racing Post Bloodstock (@rpbloodstock) July 14, 2019
The son of Galileo proved his Group One class in his most recent appearance in the Grand Prix de Paris at Longchamp. He looked full of running in the closing stages of the French contest so he should appreciate this up in trip by 2f.
Since prevailing in the biggest flat race in Europe, Anthony Van Dyck has not been able to build upon his success. He was second in the Irish Derby at the Curragh, while he finished a long way down the field in the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes.
The preference of the two O’Brien horses should go to Japan who is generally available at 4/1 for the oldest of the four British Classics. The Ballymore colt also have an entry in the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe in October for which you can find horse racing tips from Betfair experts on the card from Longchamp later this year.
NAYEF ROAD wins the Qatar Gordon Stakes
Another for Mark Johnston! pic.twitter.com/HWLc1dHKVk
— Champions Series (@ChampionsSeries) August 1, 2019
If you are looking for an each-way selection in the St Leger at bigger odds, you could do far worse than backing Nayef Road. Mark Johnston’s runner won the Group Three Gordon Stakes at Glorious Goodwood, beating the 2/1 favourite Constantinople. He showed how tough he is in the closing stages of that contest as he outbattled his rivals to hold on at the finish.
The Son of Galileo was not far away in the Queen Vase at Royal Ascot which is run over the Leger trip of 1m6f. He was third of 13 that day behind Dashing Willoughby and Barbados respectively. He was ridden prominently at the Berkshire racecourse and those may be the tactics once again at Doncaster.
Given how game he is, he will take some passing in the St Leger and certainly looks good enough to hold on for some decent prize money. At odds of 20/1, he will give you a good run for your money at the very least next month.
2 pts win Japan, St Leger (4/1 general)
1 pt each-way Nayef Road, St Leger (20/1 general)