Racegoers get their next chance to see one of the most excitingly bred 3-year-olds in training next Thursday, when Godolphin’s Frontiersman goes for the G2 Princess Of Wales’s Arqana Racing Club Stakes - the first-day highlight of the three-day Moët and Chandon July Festival at the Adnams July Course in Newmarket.
A quality entry of 35 horses has been received for the £100,000 mile-and-a-half contest, one of three opening-day Group races alongside the G2 Arqana July Stakes for 2-year-olds and the G3 Bahrain Trophy for 3-year-olds over 1m 5f.
The fast-improving Frontiersman, a Dubawi colt who, as a son of the seven-time G1 winner, Ouija Board, is a half-brother to 2014 Epsom and Irish Derby winner Australia, landed a smooth success in a valuable handicap at Newmarket’s other course, the Rowley Mile, on QIPCO 1000 Guineas Day in early May. He then took the giant leap to Group 1 company in his stride when chasing home Highland Reel in the Coronation Cup at Epsom four weeks later.
Frontiersman is set to take his chance ahead of trainer Charlie Appleby’s two other entries, Hawkbill and Scottish. A number of other trainers have multiple options for this showpiece event, not least Sir Michael Stoute and John Gosden, who are both responsible for five entries.
The Stoute quintet is led by The Queen’s G2 Yorkshire Cup hero, Dartmouth, while the Gosden team is headed by the five-time Group winner Western Hymn.
Aidan O’Brien has three engaged, including Idaho, triumphant in the G2 Hardwicke Stakes at Royal Ascot last month, while Roger Varian has four, most notably the gelding that chased home Idaho in the Hardwicke, Barsanti.
The Princess Of Wales’s is one of the first times in the year that the top 3-year-olds get the chance to take on their elders, and the dual G2 scorer Permian is among four entries from the classic generation.
Appleby said: “Frontiersman came out of the Coronation Cup well and we intended to run him in the Hardwicke Stakes, only for him to scope dirty and there was then not quite enough time to get him ready for Ascot.
“But he did a nice piece of work last Saturday and, provided he maintains a clean bill of health, it’s all systems go for the Princess Of Wales. A repeat of his Coronation Cup run should put him bang in contention.
“He was stepping up from a handicap to a Group 1 in the Coronation so for sure that was a career best for him. We didn’t run him there on a whim – he’s regally bred and had been showing us all the right signs at home – and his performance justified the decision to supplement him.
“Good ground would be perfect for him, he wouldn’t want it testing, but anything quicker should be no problem. And he’s already won on the Rowley Mile so I am not worried about the track.”