Juddmonte International 2023: Paddington leads York quartet
Paddington and Mostahdaf will face off as a field of four go to post for Wednesday’s Juddmonte International 2023 at York.
The Aidan O’Brien-trained Paddington is Coral’s 4/6 favourite and will be seeking a fifth successive Group One triumph, having landed the Irish 2,000 Guineas, St James’s Palace Stakes, Eclipse and Sussex Stakes on his last four runs, cementing him as the cream of the three-year-old crop.
He is set to revert to the longer trip on the Knavesmire and O’Brien told Sky Sports Racing: “He’s an amazing horse really and is progressing from run to run, that’s all he has done all year.
“As you know, Ryan (Moore) doesn’t say much but he was very impressed with him in the Sussex. He would have preferred a lead but there was nobody else prepared to so that was why he went on.
“John (Magnier) always felt on pedigree he would get a mile and a half. He went to the Eclipse for his first run over a mile and a quarter so this is a little bit further on a flatter track. It will be interesting to see and we’ll take it race by race with him at the moment.”
Coral’s David Stevens said: “With Desert Crown ruled out of the race on Sunday, Paddington will face just three rivals in the Juddmonte International, and although that trio includes the impressive Royal Ascot winner, Mostahdaf, and the multiple Group One-winning filly, Nashwa, the odds suggest they will have to defy the odds if Paddington’s winning run is to be derailed on Wednesday.”
Sir Michael Stoute did not declare Bay Bridge, leaving him without a runner after last year’s Derby hero Desert Crown sustained a season-ending injury on Sunday.
He was being put through his paces on the Al Bahathri gallop when the injury occurred and was immediately transferred to the Newmarket Equine Hospital where the four-year-old will be operated on.
The son of Nathaniel’s Epsom triumph is the notable highlight in a career that has been plagued by setbacks and he has been seen just once since his finest hour, when losing his unbeaten record to Hukum in the Brigadier Gerard Stakes in May.
He subsequently missed the Prince of Wales’s Stakes at Royal Ascot due to a setback, with a leg infection preventing a rematch with Hukum in the King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Stakes last month.
This latest injury will rule the colt out for the rest of the season, with his racing career hanging in the balance.
“I’ve just been to see him and they will operate this morning,” said Bruce Raymond, racing manager for owner Saeed Suhail.
“It is a fetlock injury and he won’t be running again this year, that’s for sure.”
Juddmonte International 2023 odds
18/1 The Foxes
All odds and market correct at date of publication