By Simon Jackson.
Trainer David O’Meara believes G Force can secure a big-race double by landing the Group 2 QIPCO British Champions Sprint Stakes at Ascot on Saturday.
G Force attempts to follow up on his last-start win in the Group 1 Betfred Sprint Cup at Haydock last month where he was forced to overcome trouble in running before challenging late and winning comfortably.
The Haydock victory followed a luckless sixth in the Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes and O’Meara believes that his charge, who has been supplemented for Saturday’s race, has a great chance of victory if repeating the Haydock form.
“If he turns up with the same form as at Haydock he’ll be very difficult to beat,” O’Meara said of the three-year-old who heads the betting at 3-1 with Paddy Power for the valuable six furlong contest at Ascot where the ground remains heavy.
“He was just unlucky in the Nunthorpe,” O’Meara continued.
“He’s better than anything I’ve trained before. He has a lot of ability.”
Amongst G Force’s main rivals are Haydock Sprint Cup second, Gordon Lord Byron (5-1), along with last year’s Ascot placegetters Jack Dexter and Viztoria who respectively finished second and third to Slade Power in the 2013 Champions Sprint and are both priced at 6-1.
“We gave Jack Dexter a mid-season break to aim at the Ayr Gold Cup, which is usually run on softer ground,” trainer Jim Goldie said. “I thought he ran a good race from a very bad draw on that faster ground.
“Considering who beat him in this last year [Slade Power] and what that horse has done this year, I think ours is the one to beat if we turn up in that sort of form again. The ground has come for him finally.”
Viztoria represents last year’s winning trainer, Edward Lynam, who says the filly is in good order after her Listed win at the Curragh last week.
“She’s come out of Sunday’s Curragh win in very good form and ate up well straight after the race,” Lynam said.
“It wouldn’t be ideal bringing her out again so quickly but we haven’t been able to run her over the summer because of the fast ground so we had to take the chance of running her last weekend.
“The reason for her light campaign this season has just been the ground – she hasn’t had any physical issues.
“She finished third in this race last year and I simply don’t know if she is better now than she was then.”
Meanwhile trainer Andrew Balding is hoping for an improved run from Absolutely So who won a Listed race at York, before finishing well back in a similar contest at Newbury.
“He won well at York but was disappointing last time out but he’s since had a break and is working well at home,” Balding said of the 20-1 shot.
“He’s a high class horse who we hope will handle the ground and will run well.”
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