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Andrew Balding happy to head straight to 2000 Guineas with Kameko

Thu 16 Apr 2020

Andrew Balding will head straight to the Qipco 2000 Guineas with Kameko when a new date is announced for the colts’ Classic.

Both the Guineas Festival and Investec Derby meeting are set for alternative slots in the calendar this year due to the coronavirus outbreak, with the situation to be become clearer when racing eventually resumes in Britain.

Like his counterparts in the training ranks, the Kingsclere handler can only keep things ticking over for now.

Balding kindly recently gave us an update on life at Kingsclere under lockdown

He said in his Betway blog: “We’ve got a very strong team this season and, in any other year, would have plenty on the go around now.

“However, we’ve got to wait for a resumption to racing before we can get them going properly, as we don’t want them to boil over before the season begins.

“We haven’t pressed the button with any of our two-year-olds at this stage and will bring them in to work later than usual, so we don’t really know where we are with them at the moment.”

Kameko enjoyed a fine juvenile season, culminating in a clear-cut success in the Vertem Futurity Trophy at Newcastle – in itself a race that was rearranged with Doncaster falling to the weather.

Balding said: “Kameko is obviously the one who is carrying a lot of our hopes this season. It’s great to have a horse of his calibre to go to war with and the 2000 Guineas – whenever that may be – will be his first target.

“He was great last year, ending his season by winning the rearranged Group One Vertem Futurity Stakes at Newcastle in November.

“He’s a big, strong horse who we’ve always hoped would make a better three-year-old, and he’s wintered well. We’ve just started to pick up his work and we’re excited to get him back out again.”

While not quite having the profile of Kameko, the Queen’s King’s Lynn looked potentially smart when winning the Weatherbys Racing Bank £300,000 2-Y-O Stakes at Doncaster’s St Leger meeting.

Balding said: “This is another smart horse to keep on the right side of.

“He’s a progressive colt and followed up a good second on debut with victory in the valuable sales race at Doncaster. That race looked very competitive on paper and it was good to see him win in the style that he did.

“It’s always nice to have horses for Her Majesty The Queen and it looks as though she’s got a couple of good ones with us at the moment.”

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