Caucus gets the vote in Saturday’s Coral Marathon
Trainer John Gosden has several live chances on Eclipse day including The Fugue in the feature race and he can strike in the 4.25 with Caucus. The six-year-old was last seen chasing home Estimate in the Sagaro Stakes at Ascot in May, eventually going down by just under 2 lengths.
That form looks pretty smart following Estimate’s Gold Cup victory and sets the standard here. Caucus won the Jockey Club Stakes at Newmarket last September and seems to handle most surfaces.
The going is a major concern for Biographer who has missed several tempting engagements due to firm ground including the Ascot Gold Cup. David Lanigan’s four-year-old caught the eye on his seasonal debut at Newmarket but has shown all of his best form with cut in the ground.
Model Pupil did take his chance at Ascot and was not disgraced in finishing seventh, just over six lengths off the winner. He had earlier finished third here in the Henry II Stakes and that is probably about as good as he is.
Sir Mark Prescott’s Repeater finished back in tenth in the Gold Cup but has decent form from last season, notably when fourth in the Doncaster Cup. He has only got his head in front twice in fourteen starts but he has claims on his best form.
Andrew Balding’s Chiberta King won the closing race of the Royal meeting under a determined ride from Jimmy Fortune. The seven-year-old had to pull out all the stops to hold the late challenge of Shahwardi by a head in the Queen Alexandra Stakes.
That race was over the best part of two and three-quarter miles so Fortune will be keen to make sure that this is a proper stamina test.
Richard Hannon’s Duke Of Clarence is taking a step up in trip after winning a mile and three-quarter handicap at Goodwood. He still has to find a few pounds to be competitive with the likes of Caucus and Model Pupil on that evidence.
Bite Of The Cherry put up an improved effort when second to Songcraft at York last time out. He also has to prove that he stays this distance.