Falmouth Stakes: Via Sistina leads betting but connections want rain
Via Sistina heads the Falmouth Stakes betting odds at 2/1 with Coral following the final declarations but connections are hoping for some rain before Friday’s race at Newmarket.
The improving five-year-old broke her Group One duck last time out over 10 furlongs in the Pretty Polly at the Curragh.
She is due to drop back down to a mile on the July course but trainer George Boughey says there must be enough ease in the ground to enable her to show her best.
“We will work as if she is running but she needs the rain for her to run,” he said. “The Falmouth has always been a plan for her as she does look very good on a straight track, but softer ground is key to her.
“There are lots of times she could run where she will get soft ground and we are not going to do anything that is not in the best interests of the horse.
“If it did rain, she will be very competitive. We will walk the track and if it is the same as Ireland last time I imagine she will take her chance, but if it is any faster she won’t. For her pedigree, if she was to win a Falmouth she would be pretty sexy.”
Via Sistina is one of nine declared for the one-mile Group One that headlines Friday’s action, with a stellar cast lining up on the July course.
Defending champion Prosperous Voyage (pictured below) is one of two for Ralph Beckett and is joined by Royal Ascot runner-up Remarquee, with the Coronation Stakes second making her first outing for new owners Wathnan Racing.
John and Thady Gosden are also double-handed as they saddle not only last year’s Prix de Diane winner Nashwa, but also the Juddmonte-owned Coppice.
The Sandringham scorer was partnered by Frankie Dettori when triumphing at the Royal meeting, but with the Italian serving a ban picked up at the summer’s big week, Tom Marquand picks up a rare Clarehaven ride and deputises aboard the progressive three-year-old.
Ed Walker’s Random Harvest is another to bring smart Royal Ascot form to the table, while Roger Varian’s Ameynah was last seen finishing sixth in last year’s 1000 Guineas and returns from 439-days off the track.
Pam Sly’s Astral Beau and Aidan O’Brien’s Never Ending Story complete the field.
Coral’s Lewis Knowles said: “Via Sistina has been a real improver this year, and despite looking just below the top-level when beaten in Group 3 company last season, she’s really shown herself to be a top-class mare of late.
“Nashwa looks to be her main rival, but she has been beaten at odds-on on her last two starts. While the step back to a mile would be a question mark for her, she’d certainly be a danger to all if returning to her best form.”
Falmouth Stakes betting odds
2/1 Via Sistina
9/1 Prosperous Voyage
10/1 Random Harvest, Coppice
12/1 Never Ending Story
22/1 Ameynah, Astral Beau
All odds and market correct at date of publication