Dual Group 1 winner Palace Pier made the perfect start to his four year old career with an eight lengths victory in the Group 2 Bet365 Mile at Sandown. The son of Kingman, who won the St James's Palace Stakes and Prix Jacques Le Marois last season, powered clear inside the final furlong to set up a tilt at the Lockinge Stakes at Newbury (15th May) next month. He is a top-class colt and will take some stopping in all the big mile event this summer and it will be interesting to see if he is tried over ten furlongs at some stage. Given the fact he is unbeaten in three visits to the Esher track, one wonders if he will be given an entry in the Coral Eclipse in July.
Willliam Haggas gave Alenquer a favourable mention in his interview on page 90 of Ahead On The Flat nominating the Group 3 Classic Trial as his first target and the Adlerflug colt duly won the ten furlongs event at the rewarding odds of 25/1. Well positioned throughout by Tom Marquand, he stayed on well to fend off the late challenge of Adayar by half a length. William mentioned the German Derby as a possible target and it would be no surprise to see him head across Europe this summer.
The Talking Trainers section produced another winner in the concluding three year old handicap with Juan De Montalban (3/1) making virtually all under champion jockey Oisin Murphy. The ten furlongs event has been won by some useful types over the years, including subsequent Irish Derby winner Jack Hobbs in 2015 and, while this son of Lope De Vega is unlikely to match those achievements, Andrew Balding's charge could emerge as a live contender for something like the King George V Handicap at Royal Ascot (17th June). There is plenty of stamina in his pedigree and it will be a surprise if he isn't even better over a mile and a half plus.
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