Johnston snaps up Moore to partner Windhoek in Coral Challenge
Those who supported Richard Hannon’s Wentworth earlier in the week will be fearing a repeat of his luckless Ascot run after the favourite was drawn 16 of 17 for Saturday’s Coral Challenge. Jockey Richard Hughes had to sit and suffer on the well-backed favourite in the Britannia Handicap but the gaps came too late as Wentworth could only stay on into fourth place.
The conundrum facing Hughes is similar to the one he faced when partnering Sky Lantern to victory in the Coronation Stakes. On that occasion he elected to drop in behind rather than try to get a good position early on.
The Irishman lacks nothing in confidence and it would not be the biggest surprise if he adopts a similar tactic on Wentworth. It will mean an anxious time for supporters as they hope that he can weave his way through the field in the home straight.
Another sufferer of the draw is Andrew Balding’s Roserrow (17) who is seeking a quick Sandown hat-trick. Jimmy Fortune kicked on some way out to hold of Danchai last time with Gaul Wood and Trader Jack behind.
Trainer Mark Johnston has his string firing on all cylinders and has booked Ryan Moore to ride the talented Windhoek. The colt has been highly tried since winning a valuable sales race at Newmarket and has drawn stall 1.
His form in the Dante and the Tricentenary Stakes reads better than anything else in here and his price has been cut from 8-1 to 9-2. Johnston also saddles Es Que Love who ran his best race for a while at Ascot and has the assistance of Olivier Peslier.
Asatir and Rockalong renew rivalry after fighting out a thrilling finish at Salisbury last time. Luca Cumani’s colt is 1lb better off for the head that separated the pair and he is drawn nicely in stall 4.
Prince Of Johanne heads the weights after failing in his attempt at back-to-back victories in the Royal Hunt Cup. Directorship and Fury also finished well down the field that day.