Horse-by-horse guide in Doncaster Group One


Stakes of the Vertem Futur Trophy

Saturday 23 October 2021

When or: 3.15 Doncaster

Jackpot: £ 118,400.00

TV: ITV4 & Sky Sports Racing (415)

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Horse-by-horse guide


Did the best of the O’Brien line when he finished fourth in the Autumn Stakes, improving bare form from his first Listowel win at seven stages. Always made for speed in Newmarket, despite moving up to a mile, and he’s going to need more of a test on that proof if he is to become a top performer. Greenness under pressure last time so unlikely we’ve seen the best of him yet.

Blue angel

As the only Group 1 winner on the pitch he should be treated with maximum respect and although Lagardère’s triumph is arguably more about him handling conditions better than others rather than a ditch. important in terms of class, it obviously improves and promises to enjoy the first crack a mile away. His relative wealth of experience should count for a lot in this race and he is a pretty solid alternative to the market leader, although he wouldn’t want the ground to dry out too much.

Boy by the bay

Run very well and improved on the previous Group 2 victory at Doncaster in terms of form, as he was third at the Native Trail youth leader in Dewhurst a fortnight ago and there is no indication he will continue not to progress. Bred to cope well with increasing distance and unlikely to worry too much about the weather this week.

OUT NOW! Order Timeform Horses to Track 2021/22 Jump Problem


Galway first winner (mile extended) who at first glance failed to place sixth and got their first taste of Group 2 action in the Champions Juvenile Stakes at Leopardstown last month. However, he was the favorite and had an apology as he was slow from the gate and therefore not ideally placed throughout. I couldn’t get into the clear and ride early enough in the straight, but still remained fine without being unduly knocked down. He had also beaten Leopardstown finalist Stone Age in Galway so it’s definitely worth scoring him and this giant son of Fastnet Rock should enjoy that kind of test, a race his trainer won as a jockey in 2011 and 2012 and her owners disembarked two years ago when they were executed in Newcastle.

Bullet force

Didn’t do much wrong at all, keeping his form since winning a maiden from Musselburgh, but doesn’t operate at the same level as most and is easily overlooked in a company also elated.


Curragh maiden winner in April and fairly easy to support (20/1) after returning from 175 days against a steep rise in class in the Dewhurst. Was sixth there but put the experience to good use by winning Leopardstown Group 3 a week later (the team’s juveniles were only 3-41 in Ireland in October so far). Going up a mile for the first time promises to be fitting and has a good attitude to go with its obvious class.

Hannibal Barça

He probably didn’t need to hugely improve his promising third Ascot to win the Salisbury novice at the end of last month, but put them aside with good style and was strong enough down the line. It looks pretty promising for next year, but it might be too soon given that he has a lot to find in form.

Hoo Ya Mal

He’s clearly going in the right direction as he gains more experience and also the typically hot Convivial York girl of two and a half lengths with plenty to spare. Since then Noble Truth has escaped the Listed event at Doncaster and that rival then pushed Angel Bleu up close in Group 1 at ParisLongchamp. Has worn a balaclava for all three starts so far, but has a track record, should run the mile quite well on the pedigree and won’t care at all if it shows up relatively quickly underfoot .


Has clear ground to catch up on a number of these rivals and so far his only win in eight outings has come at a Killarney nursery starting at an 85 rating. Could be used to help build a fort gallop here.

Imperial fighter

  • Coach: Andrew Balding
  • Form: 122

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Won his first outing, then took the Royal Patronage home in the Acomb in York, feeling like he needed a tougher endurance test. I had that in the Autumn Stakes and performed admirably against a really classy colt at Coroebus. He took his challenge away from the top two at Newmarket so it’s not hard to have a positive outlook on effort and he seems capable of playing a role here.


The form of her first victory at Killarney in July was nothing out of the ordinary, but she certainly looked to the game and, after 73 days of absence, clinched meager odds when she reached the level of the group two in the Beresford Stakes at Curragh. Looks like a typical O’Brien trained challenger for this race which included this horse’s sire Camelot who won in 2011. It could be a bit special.


The penny clearly fell at the end of her Galway debut, winning fourth place – beaten just a length and a half – and duly won just 10 days later in a Leopardstown maiden. Did well there as it looked like the runner-up had slipped on the pitch, and going from seven stadiums to one mile clearly helped. Stable won this race last year and while he has to make another major leap to be competitive he is not one to rule out out of hand.

Royal Patronage

He’s grown stronger and stronger since he finished fifth in six stages on his York debut in May, never better than battling to beat future Autumn Stakes winner Coroebus at the Royal Lodge in Newmarket. Clearly I savored the mile traveled and it might be foolish to suggest that we have now seen the best of him. Stable juveniles tend to keep fit, adapt to all types of soil, and provide a rock-solid shape.


The trainer already dreamed of a potential Derby crackpot and had every right to be, given this horse’s pedigree and how he won his maiden over nine stages at the Curragh. There’s a chance he won’t show up in the end, as relations had hinted that he would be referred for a spring trial immediately after the Curragh, which only took place last Thursday, but he looks very exciting.

Stone Age

The last competitor of Ballydoyle who has not yet managed to break his duck of four starts, including the sixth from nine behind Angel Bleu in the Prix Jean-Luc Lagardère at ParisLongchamp. The form before that is closely related to Buckaroo and getting back to a healthy surface should help this son of Galileo, but others are more appealing.


There is no Aidan O’Brien record in the race and he could end up fielding a handful to help ensure a decent canter for the market leader Luxembourg, which looks potentially cut from similar fabric to Magna Grecia, Saxon Warrior and Camelot, all of whom won this for Ballydoyle before claiming classic fame at three.

However, there have been an unusual swing or two in coaching form this season, especially in the juveniles, and taking the small chances seems pretty risky at this point.

Royal Patronage is most evident in the opposition after beating rising star Coroebus in the Autumn Stakes, while Ralph Beckett’s Blue angel and Roger Varian Boy by the bay and the Andrew Balding trained Imperial fighter also bring a very respectable form to the table.

The one who has some catching up to do but could take a huge leap forward facing a wide and galloping track and a mile in a straight line is Joseph O’Brien. BUCKARO, and he looks at the first value in both directions in the run to 16/1-plus.

A massive colt who has improved a lot from his remaining third debut at Killarney, he justified favoritism tied for silver despite his mismanagement of the course at the Galway Festival and was wanted for the Leopardstown Group Two over Irish Champions Weekend .

Not much went well for him there after a slow start that put him on the back foot and he was clearly better than the bare result, especially as the Galway finalist was second again, but maybe he could create a surprise. here for the owner team who won with Kameko in 2019.

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