The ultimate traditional of 2023, the Betfred St. Leger Stakes take centre stage in Doncaster this week.
Nonetheless, rather less than 24 hours earlier than, Friday’s Doncaster Cup is given equal billing.
A Group 2 contest over 2m2f, the British Champions Collection contest pits the best stayers over the flat head-to-head and for Coltrane, his twenty second outing could possibly be a landmark one.
Can the defending champion be a part of the likes of Stradivarius, Millenary and Double Set off, turning into the stuff of race legend?
Group 1 drought
It’s been one other sturdy season for Coltrane, albeit having been evenly raced this summer time.
In comparison with the gelding’s seven journeys in 2022, coach Andrew Balding has given the 6yo son of Mastercraftsman simply three runs since June.
All three have been at pageant meets, however just one has introduced success; final month’s Lonsdale Cup throughout Ebor week.
🏆 Coltrane wins the @WbysHamilton Lonsdale Cup! @AndrewBalding2‘s star stayer fends off Braveness Mon Ami and Giavellotto to land the £250,000 Group Two prize below @oismurphy 👏 pic.twitter.com/nr4d1i7CSk
— York Racecourse (@yorkracecourse) August 25, 2023
Regardless of coming right here with a 1-3-2 formbook, the remaining elephant within the room is his absence of a Group 1 win.
Fourth to Kyprios in final yr’s Goodwood Cup, Quickthorn’s sensational run on return to West Sussex then noticed a 3rd place.
Earlier than that in fact, as Ascot Gold Cup favorite, Braveness Mon Ami and Frankie Dettori nipped residence.
Elite success should wait till 2024, however defending the crown could be the proper springboard.
A well-known foe
It was 12 months in the past at an enormous value that 9/1 Coltrane surprised the bookies by beating the two/9f.
Friday’s race will see Trueshan in search of revenge.
Holding out by a neck final outing, the 2 will lock horns to resume their rivalry and Hollie Doyle might be hoping for rain to reach. It ought to.
Because it stands, the head-to-head teller reads: Coltrane 2-1 Trueshan.
The previous gained their most up-to-date conflict at Ascot again in Could’s Gold Cup trial, the place Doyle was pressured to accept fourth.
This might be Trueshan’s first outing since wind surgical procedure.
Broome may even be one other acquainted face within the stalls as for the fourth time this time period, Aidan O’Brien’s relative veteran seems to be to land a blow on Coltrane.
The opposite huge Doncaster Cup participant this yr, is Candy William.
Beforehand unbeaten this yr earlier than the Ebor, the Gosdens tasted defeat to Willie Mullins and Frankie Dettori through Absurde means.
A horse for all situations after a formidable win within the mud within the Coral Summer time Handicap at Goodwood, the 4yo provides half-a-furlong to the journey right here.
Might that show pivotal, with a win over simply longer than 2m?
The in-form Oisin Murphy might produce other concepts.
The Betfred Doncaster Cup Stakes takes place over 2m2f on Friday at 15:00 BST