Racing week: Break through for Barbaro

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  • Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro, who shattered a hind leg in the Preakness (20 May), is making good recovery. The colt, who has captured the hearts of the American public, remains in intensive care at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine.

    Barbaro won the Kentucky Derby on the same day George Washington won the 2,000 guineas (6 May). Bred and owned by the Jackson family, who also bred George Washington, the colt was tipped to win the Preakness at the Triple Crown a few weeks later but 800m from the start he broke down.

    Although he will be missing the rest of the racing season, the three-year-old will no doubt make an impression at the Eclipse awards later this year. In his seven-month racing career Barbaro won $US 2.3 million.

    Setbacks for George Washington

    George Washington’s trainer Aidan O’Brien claims it will be months rather than weeks before 2,000 guineas winner returns to the track.

    The colt has resumed light exercise after a period of box rest following his defeat to Araafa in the Boylesports Irish 2,000 Guineas. George Washington was found to have suffered a muscle injury above the hip two days later, which has proved a major setback.

    Whether the classic-winning colt will be seen on a racecourse again hangs in the balance. There are similarities with the career of Footstepsinthesand, 2,000 guineas winner at Newmarket last year, who failed to reappear after suffering a foot injury during the Classic. Footstepinthesand has now been retired to stud.

    Ouija Board vs David Junior

    David Junior will be up against Ouija Board in the Coral-Eclipse Stakes at Sandown on Saturday week. The four-year-old finished fourth behind Ed Dunlop’s Ouija Board in the Prince Of Wales’s Stakes at Royal Ascot last Wednesday. David Junior was sent off the favourite at Ascot, but his connections believe he is capable of trumping the champion filly. Jamie Spencer will be partnering the colt at Sandown.

    Trouble for Jamie Spencer

    Jockey Jamie Spencer, who was the leading rider at Ascot, could miss out on the champion jockey’s title as the threat of a long ban for riding offences hangs over him. This may jeopardises his chances of taking the mantle of champion jockey ahead of his chief rival Ryan Moore, who is now five points ahead in the standings. But Spencer has claimed he will not be playing it safe over the next few weeks.

    Hurricane Run to be redeemed

    Hurricane Run’s trainer Andre Farbre has insisted that the colt will be at his best for the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes at Ascot next month, despite his surprise defeat at Saint-Cloud on Sunday.

    Fabre was speaking for the first time since last season’s Irish Derby and Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe winner — who had easily beaten two rivals on his reappearance at The Curragh — was beaten by Pride in the Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud. However, Fabre has stressed that he has not lost faith in Hurricane Run.

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