Camelot tops Leger contenders

Camelot is one of 36 entries for the Ladbrokes St Leger as he continues his quest to win the Triple Crown.

Camelot is one of 36 entries for the Ladbrokes St Leger as he continues his quest to win the Triple Crown.

Having already won the first two legs, the 2000 Guineas at Newmarket and the Derby at Epsom, if Camelot is successful at Doncaster on September 15 he will become the first winner of the three races since Nijinsky in 1970.

Trained by Aidan O’Brien, Camelot has also won the Irish Derby at the Curragh.

He could be joined by up to as many as 10 stable companions with the likes of Imperial Monarch, Astrology and Athens, who has not been seen this season to date.

John Gosden appears to be the main threat to the Triple Crown bid.

The Clarehaven handler has Irish Oaks winner Great Heavens, Shantaram, Michelangelo, Dartford and Thought Worthy to choose from.

Mahmood Al Zarooni is another well represented trainer with his list of possibles headed by his new recruit and Royal Ascot winner Energizer.

Sir Henry Cecil has two possibles in Thomas Chippendale and Noble Mission, with the Queen‘s Estimate given an entry by Sir Michael Stoute.

Main Sequence, Light Heavy and Hartani are other notable entries at this early stage.

Cecil's two entries were first and second in the King Edward VII Stakes at Royal Ascot, with Thomas Chippendale coming out on top for Sir Robert Ogden.

His racing manager, Barry Simpson, said: “It’s quite possible that Thomas Chippendale will head to Doncaster.

“We have two races in mind for him – the Gordon Stakes at Goodwood (July 31) and the Great Voltigeur Stakes at York (August 22) – and at the moment he will probably run at York.

“He would have to win or be a very unlucky loser in either of those races to warrant going for the St Leger.

“He has come out of Royal Ascot in great shape. He’s an uncomplicated horse, who is very straightforward and I don’t think that we would have any concern about his stamina for the Leger.

“Our view is that he is pretty good over a mile and a half and that he has a good turn of foot over that distance.

“I don’t think that an extra two furlongs will make an awful lot of difference to him but you don’t know until you try over that trip.

“He is a continuously improving horse. Sir Henry started him off with a good education last season and we were a little late in starting him this season, due to the ground conditions and the fact that he had an eating problem, so he couldn’t take his work in the early part of the season.

“We have seen some good middle-distance performances this year and it wouldn’t matter who we came up against at Doncaster – we would fear them all because they wouldn’t line up if they didn’t justify being there.

“There is always a horse to beat – you can be a 1-8 chance in a maiden and still get beaten.”

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