All-weather hero Corinthia Knight aims for Group 3 prize in Texanita
Prix Texanita (Group 3) | 3yo | 5½f | turf
The Archie Watson-trained Corinthia Knight is on a roll this season and, having already left France with the lion's share of the spoils after landing a Listed race at Chantilly in March, the colt is back on his travels.
A relatively recent addition to the calendar, the Prix Texanita is designed to act as a staging post for those with ambitions to run in the Group 1 Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot, although Watson and owners Ontoawinner have decided to bypass that particular engagement.
"Corinthia Knight isn't in the Commonwealth Cup because we're trying to set our sights a little bit more realistically," said Ontoawinner syndicate manager Niall O'Brien.
"If he could win a Group 3 or Group 2, that would be great. We were beaten by Invincible Army in a Group 3 last year and we have to be mindful of our rating, as we’re not a Group 1-rated horse."
Corinthia Knight was fourth on the Breeders' Cup undercard at Del Mar last autumn and enjoyed his biggest payday when holding off all-comers on All-Weather Championships Finals day at Lingfield, his fourth success in a row.
"He has to prove himself equally as effective on turf because he's shown himself extremely difficult to beat on the all-weather," said O'Brien.
"We think he’ll go on the ground and I don’t see anything in the race that he couldn’t get competitive with. We think he goes there in good form, he’s fit and he’s had a great campaign. He’ll be his usual game self."
Alistair bids to boost Sands Of Mali form
One Commonwealth Cup contender whose form could receive a boost is Sands Of Mali, who edged home in the Prix Sigy ahead of Alistair, who is in opposition to Corinthia Knight here.
Godolphin's Beau Ideal and Absolute City are closely matched on their runs in the Criterium de Vitesse last October and also enter calculations.
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