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Young guns Royal Aclaim and The Platinum Queen showcase sprint talent at York




A new European sprint sensation could announce himself to the world at York on Friday.


Royal Aclaim is a three-year-old on a rapid rise to the top and will be sent off favourite for the Group One Nunthorpe Stakes (1,000m) on just his fourth career start and having never tackled Group company before.


Winner of a Listed race at this course in fine style last time when not coming off the bridle until well inside the final furlong before going onto win by an easy two lengths, Royal Aclaim receives weight from his elders as he enters the elite level for the first time but looks a horse destined for the top.


The Nunthorpe Stakes is unusual in terms of Group One sprints as it is also open to two-year-olds.


Just two juveniles – Lyric Fantasy in 1992 and Kingsgate Native in 2007 – have won this contest in the past 40 years and The Platinum Queen is the latest to attempt to emulate their achievements.


The Richard Fahey-trained filly gets 20 pounds or more from all the other runners in the field and has decent form to her name, winning by four lengths at the Glorious Goodwood Festival last time.


This talented filly has pace to burn and should not be underestimated off her light weight and it’s interesting to note that the two shortest-priced runners in the market are the most inexperienced, with The Platinum Queen and Royal Aclaim running just seven times between them.


They are priced up on potential whereas Group One winners Highfield Princess, Winter Power and Emaraaty Ana are all available at double-figure prices and have every chance of figuring in the finish.


The distances on the third day of York’s Ebor Festival go from one extreme to the other as just over an hour before the sprinters showcase their talent in the Nunthorpe, some of Britain and Ireland’s best stayers do battle in the Group Two Lonsdale Cup (3,200m).


Stradivarius keeps thwarting the best-laid plans for his retirement by continuing to run well and he will likely be sent off favourite for this race after finishing second in the Goodwood Cup last time.

On that occasion he finished a place in front of main market rival Trueshan, whose regular rider Hollie Doyle will be hoping the heatwave in Britain continues to break with her mount requiring soft conditions to be at his best.


Some potential Classic contenders for next season are on display in the Group Two Dubai Gimcrack Stakes (1,200m).


Royal Scotsman created a good impression when saluting in the Group Two Richmond Stakes at Goodwood last time and sets the standard for the others to aim at.


Noble Style is unbeaten in two starts and represents the powerful Godolphin operation. He could well be up to this level but is taking a huge step up in class, while Marshman could be anything after winning his second start by eight and a half lengths last time.


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