Speed machine Battaash to face seven rivals in Nunthorpe defence

Wed 19 Aug 2020

Battaash will face seven rivals as he bids to defend his crown in the Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes at York.

Charlie Hills’ speedster clocked 55.9 seconds for the five furlongs when romping to victory 12 months ago, beating the course record held by another Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum sprinter, Dayjur, in the same race in in 1990.

Battaash showed he is in no mood to relinquish his speed title when smashing his own personal best for the flying five at Goodwood in landing the King George Stakes for a fourth time three weeks ago.

The six-year-old will face a couple of new kids on the block on Friday, in the three-year-olds Art Power and A’Ali.

Art Power, trained at Great Habton by Tim Easterby, is the new pride of Yorkshire after rattling off four impressive victories. The latest came in the Lacken Stakes at Naas when he chalked off his first Group success.

A’Ali, from the stable of Simon and Ed Crisford, lifted the Sapphire Stakes at the Curragh last time to take his Group-race haul to five.

Moss Gill, winner of the Listed City Walls Stakes over this course and distance last month, steps up to Group One company for the first time.

The Michael Dods-trained Que Amoro, who was third that day, renews rivalry.

Ornate outran his odds of 100-1 when third to Battaash at Goodwood. David Griffiths’ seven-year-old takes him on again.

Completing the line-up are Kevin Ryan’s Emaraaty Ana and Kurious, trained by Henry Candy.

The American-trained Golden Pal and Robert Cowell’s Rocket Action were the two withdrawals at the 48-hour final declaration stage.

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