Aidan O’Brien trains 2 out of the first 3 in the betting for this years LADBROKES ST LEGER at Doncaster. ORDER ST GEORGE is currently the market leader for the race at around 3/1 with most bookmakers, after his recent win last weekend at the CURRAGH.
Aidan o Brien’s 3 year old looked impressive on his most recent start in the group 3 Irish ST LEGER trial at the CURRAGH, when winning by just over 7 lengths, although he was getting a lot of weight of some classy older horses that day.
This colt also has an entry in the Irish ST LEGER at the CURRAGH the following day, so there’s also a possibility they may go for the Irish version with him instead. The 3/1 looks quite short at this stage in what is a very competitive race, in which there’s been some shock results in previous years.
The next two horses in the betting are STORM OF STARS trained by William Haggis and BONDI BEACH the other horse trained by Aidan o Brien. These two horses both ran in the Betway great volitigeur stakes at York last week. A lot of trainers will use the voltigeur as a trial for there LADBROKES ST LEGER horse.
This years renewal of the voltigeur ended in these 2 colts fighting it out in a closely contested finish with STORM OF THE STARS keeping the race after a stewards enquiry due to drifting left in the closing stages of the race causing BONDI BEACH a little interference which jockey Joseph o Brien believes cost him ¾ of a length and possibly the race.
At this stage out the first 3 horses in the betting BONDI BEACH is biggest price at 5/1which is what I believe to be best value out of the 3. I think he has got more scope to improve than STORM OF THE STARS who is second favourite at 7/2.
William Haggis’s 3 year old has had a tough season running in some highly competitive races, and I just think that the step up in trip might just be a little too much at this stage of the season. STORM OF THE STARS has run in the Epsom and Irish derby this season and a good group 1 race at LONGCHAMP over in France in which he was beaten in 3rd before finally winning the voltigeur at YORK. I can see this colt getting beaten by something that’s had a lighter campaign this season as these big races take a lot out of a young horse.
Another trainer to be feared in this race is John Gosden who has won this race 4 times and his runner this year is MR SINGH. Frankie Dettori rode this horse to win at NEWMARKET recently to win over 1 mile and 5 furlongs and looked strong at the finish I don’t see the trip being an issue for this horse. John Gosden has also entered MR SINGH in the long distance cup at ASCOT in October on champion’s day, which clearly means he expects him to stay.
HIGH CHAPPARAL is this horses sire, a breeder’s cup winner over 1 mile 4 furlongs who was trained by Aidan o Brien. The best price available for MR SINGH is currently 6/1.If John Gosdens colt is as classy as his sire the 6/1 could look quite big come the day of the race. I don’t think we have seen the best of MR SINGH just yet he could even be the horse to watch out for next year, however at this stage id rather look for a something to back each way at a bigger price.
France have got 2 horses entered in this years renewal, however that form doesn’t look too convincing a lot of small field soft ground races in France. The best form of the two is SUMBAL who finished 5th in a group 1 at CHANTILLY in a race won by Arc contender NEW BAY.
Aidan o Brien saddled HIGHLAND REEL who finished 2nd that day to NEW BAY so he will know what sort of horse can beat SUMBAL especially considering that race was run over 10 furlongs. Ballydoyle have another 4 entries for the race, and at the prices the one I find most interesting is GIOVANNI CANALETTO.
It wouldn’t be uncommon for this stables 2nd or 3rd string horse to win a classic. In this year’s running of the Epsom Oaks there was a shock win when qualify won for the Ballydoyle team at 50/1.
GIOVANNI CANALETTO has had a similar campaign to STORM OF THE STARS in the races he has run in throughout the season. He would have to improve to beat STORM OF THE STARS but I see the step up in trip bringing the best out of him, and I get the feeling the Irish or English ST LEGER, has always been this horses long term plan.
Aidan o Brien’s colt has run reasonably well in the Epsom and Irish Derby and also ran to form recently when finishing 3rd in the voltigeur stakes at YORK. There is currently 12 runners left in the race at this stage but I can see the field size shortening come the day of the race. I see the 16/1 excellent each way value considering he only finished 5 lengths behind the market leaders at YORK, if there was only 7/8 runners in the field this colt would be much shorter in the betting. So the 16/1 is worth taking at this stage.
I can see GIOVANNI CANALETTO relishing the step up to 1 mile 6 furlongs and I reckon he could pick up the pieces when everything else has done its running.
ADVICE: GIOVANNI CANALETTO
16/1 BET 365 – 1 POINT EACH WAY