Tag Archives: Churchill

Early Season Form Crucial for Churchill in 2017

Source: Yorkshire Post via Twitter.

Churchill and trainer Aidan O’Brien will be aiming for a strong start to their quest to dominate the flat season in 2017. The Bay Colt has boasted a formidable record in the early stages of his career, but now must deliver on his promise with victories in the biggest races on the calendar. Churchill will have to find his form around the track before the crucial meets of the campaign, having not raced since October last year.

He will have no shortage of challengers, who have used races across the country to build up a rhythm ahead of the hectic part of the season. The three-year-old will return to the track at the 2000 Guineas as one of the leading contenders to secure the win, being backed in the latest horse racing betting odds at 15/8 to claim victory at Newmarket.

He will be eager to begin his 2017 season on the highest of notes, with the Dante Stakes next on the agenda after the Guineas – where Churchill will be looking to join former greats by winning at York. Momentum will be key for the Bay Colt and O’Brien over the course of the season with bigger meets on the horizon in June at the Epsom Downs and Ascot. As a result, extending his winning streak will be imperative in pursuit of greater glory.

Churchill began his career at the European Breeders Fund Maiden, but just missed on a debut win as he was edged out on the final furlong by Van Der Decken and Magnification. To this day it’s the only race where the Bay Colt has failed to claim victory.

Source: Ascot Racecourse via Twitter

His first appearance at Ascot was a success, as although he entered the meet as the favourite, the Irish horse was able to stride to a comfortable win down the stretch ahead of Isomer. The Bay Colt delivered in his next out at Leopardstown with his second victory at the Tyros Stakes, producing a strong run to the finish to beat out Alexios Komnenos by a neck.

Churchill’s form was going from strength to strength signalled by his best outing at Curragh where he blew away the rest of the field with an excellent run to win the Futurity Stakes. The National Stakes was a statement win for the Bay Colt, highlighting his dominance at the top of the field. Jockeyed by Ryan Moore the Irish horse cruised to victory by 4¼ lengths ahead of Mehmas and Frankie Dettori.

He secured his fifth straight win at Newmarket in the Dewhurst Stakes in October, with another flawless performance, defeating Lancaster Bomber – who will be one of his challengers over the course of the season.

Churchill has the talent to enjoy an extremely successful season, with the possibility of matching Golden Horn’s achievements in 2015 of winning the Dante Stakes, Epsom Derby, Irish Champion Stakes and Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe. His early season form will be crucial to beginning on the right note and his performances must be of a high standard at the Guineas and the Dante Stakes.

Should Churchill continue his winning streak at both meets, then it would be no surprise to see the Bay Colt enjoying further success at the biggest races later in the campaign.

Two Contenders to Challenge Churchill at 2000 Guineas

Al Wukair. Source: Al Shaqab Racing via Twitter.

Churchill is the leading candidate to triumph at the 2000 Guineas to kick start an important run of races in the flat season. The Bay Colt has known nothing other than success in his career to date, winning five of his six meets to date along with a third-place finish on his debut.

Aidan O’Brien’s charge has been touted to make a run at all the major crowns this term, with Dante Stakes, Epsom Stakes and Royal Ascot all on the agenda in the near future.

He has not raced since October and that could allow the rest of the field a chance strike at the three-year-old in the race, catching him cold and out of rhythm.

Here are two of the potential candidates that could snatch the victory away from Churchill and O’Brien.

Al Wukair

The Irish horse has been touted as one of the main challengers for Churchill in the race. He trains under the tutelage of Andre Fabre and reports from France suggest that he could be in line for a very successful season.

He has been limited in his action on the track with only two races to his name thus far. The three-year-old’s first meet came at the Isonomy Listed Stakes in Deauville.

Jockeyed by Gregory Benoist the Bay Colt secured a comfortable victory by one-and-a-half lengths, delivering on expectations having been named the favourite before the race.

After a six-month break, Al Wukair returned to the track at the Djebel Stakes in Maisons-Laffitte. Once he again the three-year-old was heavily backed, with Benoist and the Irish horse securing another victory.

With two wins under his belt, Al Wukair has a decent chance to beat out Churchill, being backed in the latest horse racing betting odds at 4/1 to triumph at Newmarket.


The Bay Colt will come into the major racing fold under the weight of expectations. Eminent is the son of the legendary horse Frankel, who was truly dominant in the flat between 2010 and 2012.

Eminent. Source: Read Sport via Twitter

Success is in the three-year-old’s blood and trainer Martyn Meade will be determined to guide the horse to victory and continue his bright start to his career.

Eminent will be on familiar territory at Newmarket, where his two previous races to date have been situated.

He made his debut in September last year at the Stallions Maiden Stakes, and jockeyed by Jim Crowley, the Irish horse produce an excellent display to triumph by two-and-three-quarter lengths, finishing well ahead of favourite Taj Mahal.

The Bay Colt returned to action at the end of April after seven months off the track. However, he displayed no signs of rust at the Craven Stakes winning the race with a fine run down the stretch, once again finishing ahead of the touted favourite War Decree.

Eminent’s familiarity on Newmarket racecourse will stand him in good stead for the 2000 Guineas and he has already shown a propensity for causing an upset. Churchill will have to be well aware of the threat the Irish horse can pose down the final furlong in the meet.