Cesarewitch a potential target for Coltrane with tilt at St Leger ruled out

Tue 25 Aug 2020

Andrew Balding will work back from a potential shot at the Cesarewitch with Coltrane, after deciding to bypass next month’s Pertemps St Leger.

The Kingsclere trainer believes the two-and-a-quarter-mile handicap at Newmarket in October is a more suitable target for the progressive three-year-old, rather than the final Classic of the season at Doncaster.

Although beaten in his first two starts on the all-weather, Coltrane has made giant strides since being switched to turf –  having rattled up a hat-trick of wins, completed with an impressive victory in the Melrose at York on Saturday.

Balding said: “I think the likelihood is we will sit out it out until October and look at the Cesarewitch, and possibly the three-year-old handicaps at that time.

“I will definitely bypass the St Leger. He has won a handicap off 86, albeit impressively, but it is a big jump to the St Leger.

“Considering he started in early June, he has had a fair bit of racing, because Saturday was his fifth run of the year – so we will just sit it out until the autumn.”

While Coltrane is yet to race beyond a mile and three-quarters, Balding believes he would get the Cesarewitch trip.

He added: “He relaxes very well – which will help with the trip -and I think the nature of the track would suit him on the Rowley Mile.

“I think it’s quite an attractive target, because it is a valuable handicap and he goes on any ground, so that is great going forward.”

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