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Toronado - Newmarket 18/04/2013

Toronado: ready to do battle in 2,000 Guineas on Saturday

  PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (  

Toronado in 'form of his life' for Guineas clash

RICHARD HANNON believes that Saturday's Qipco 2,000 Guineas is a straight fight between the unbeaten pair of Toronado and Dawn Approach, and reported his contender to be in 'probably the form of his life'.

The first Classic of the British Flat season is shaping up to be a heavyweight clash between Hannon and Bolger's stars, and punters feel the same way with Dawn Approach as short as evens favourite and Toronado 5-2, while Mars is next best at 6-1, but can be backed at 9-1.

Speaking via phone link at Tuesday's Qipco Guineas festival preview lunch, Richard Hannon jnr said of Toronado: "He did a superb piece of work on Sunday and just cantered this morning. He's in fantastic form, probably the form of his life.

"I'm confident he'll run a very good race and it's between him and Dawn Approach, I think. Hopefully he'll win."

Van Der Neer, who will be partnered by William Buick, will also run for the yard in the race, and Hannon jnr added: "He doesn't have the same amount of dash as Toronado, but he will see out the mile really well. His preparation has been good and he looks very well."

The ground was described as good at the track on Tuesday, and clerk of the course Michael Prosser is hoping rainfall will arrive in time so he does not have to resort to watering.

"I walked the course earlier and you couldn't call it anything else other than good," said Prosser. "It walks well, with a nice spring to it, and if we had this ground on Saturday I'd be very pleased."

"It's obviously going to dry over the next three days but we're forecast 4mm on Friday night and I'd rather it rain than me having to water, so I'm hoping the forecast is correct.

"I have got little choice but to be patient and just see how this all unfolds, but there is no need to do anything with any great urgency as the ground is good and not drying out particularly swiftly."

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