Touchdown Patriot! Pletcher star to fly in for Queen Anne run
Twelve months on from Tepin's famous victory, the US will seek to land back-to-back runnings of the Royal Ascot-opening Queen Anne Stakes after Grade 1 winner American Patriot was confirmed an intended starter with Frankie Dettori in the saddle.
The four-year-old, winner of Keeneland’s Maker's 46 Mile on his last start, will travel to Britain next Tuesday alongside compatriot Long On Value, with the pair set to lodge at Abington Place in Newmarket.
'It's an honour'
Todd Pletcher, trainer of American Patriot, who will try to become the third US-bred Queen Anne winner in the last five runnings with Declaration Of War having scored in 2013, said: "American Patriot breezed exceptionally well on Saturday and came out of the work good. He’s doing really well, so it’s all systems go.
"It’s an honour to have a horse good enough to compete in one of the biggest races in the world like the Queen Anne, and on a stage like Royal Ascot. We are very much looking forward to it.”
Pletcher also confirmed Dettori will take the mount on American Patriot, who breezed a 'bullet' five furlongs over the Belmont turf course in his most recent tune-up on June 3.
American Patriot enjoyed a good campaign in the US last year, capturing the Grade 3 Kent Stakes at Delaware Park before going close in the Grade 1 Secretariat Stakes on Arlington Million day in Chicago.
This year WinStar Farm's colt is unbeaten in two starts, winning a Gulfstream allowance race on his seasonal debut as a prep for his breakthrough Grade 1 win at Keeneland.
Breeders' Cup Mile aim
After Ascot, American Patriot is to return to the US following the Queen Anne to point for a second half of the year campaign that will include the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Mile, a race WinStar won a year ago with Tourist.
Long On Value, who was last seen finishing second in the Group 1 Al Quoz Sprint in Dubai in March, will be Bill Mott's first runner at Royal Ascot in the Group 1 Diamond Jubilee Stakes on June 24.