Eminent targeting Newmarket hat-trick with QIPCO 2000 Guineas win
First Classic of the season on the Rowley Mile
Eminent will be bidding to complete a brilliant Rowley Mile hat-trick in the QIPCO 2000 Guineas on Saturday (May 6).
The Martyn Meade-trained three-year-old has had two wins from two starts, and they have both come at HQ, with the latest being success in the Craven Stakes last month.
So the son of Frankel heads into the 2000 Guineas with hopes of landing his handler a maiden British Classic success.
“It’s a very exciting opportunity to have a horse like this,” said Meade. “He has done nothing wrong and done nothing but improve and I have been really pleased with how he is and how he conducts himself mentally.
“He’s only had two runs and I don’t think we’ve yet seen the best of him. Maybe the mile is his absolute minimum. I think there’s no doubt he will get further, one-and-a-quarter (furlongs), maybe one-and-a-half.”
But he added: “He’s got two key things going for him in that he’s something of a course specialist as he’s only ever won at Newmarket, unlike the others except Churchill, who won the Dewhurst. The other thing is the time, as the Craven was the quickest for 50 years.”
It is a small but select field for the 2000 Guineas, with Eminent up against nine others after the final declaration stage, and they include ante-post winter favourite Churchill.
“We’re very happy with his preparation and so far so good really,” said trainer Aidan O’Brien of Churchill.
“He was a very mature two year old, big and strong with plenty of scope and we have been very happy with him over the winter.”
Completing the field are Al Wukair, Barney Roy, Dream Castle, Lancaster Bomber, Larchmont Lad, Law And Order, Spirit of Valor and Top Score.