Fascinating Rock a solid choice for Windsor Group 3 glory

Time for Dermot Weld star to race into the limelight

Pat Smullen is heading to Windsor to partner topweight Fascinating Rock in the Winter Hill Stakes. Photograph: Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images

Pat Smullen is heading to Windsor to partner topweight Fascinating Rock in the Winter Hill Stakes. Photograph: Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images

 

Pat Smullen takes a day off from the defence of his Irish jockey’s title to partner Fascinating Rock in Windsor’s Group 3 Saturday evening feature, a potential step towards Group 1 autumn glory.

Dermot Weld’s star has been rather overshadowed by his exciting stable companion Free Eagle for much of his career, but brings a 119 rating to the Winter Hill Stakes which should make him hard to beat despite topweight.

Ambitions

Considering he had the King George hero Postponed and The Grey Gatsby behind him when narrowly beaten by Al Kazeem in May’s Tattersalls Gold Cup, Group 1 ambitions for the colt appear entirely legitimate.

 

Ground conditions might yet prevent a tilt at the Irish Champion Stakes in a fortnight but October’s English Champion, for which Fascinating Rock is already as low as 14-1, could prove his ultimate shot at top-flight success.

“It’s a lovely race the boss picked out for him. He’s coming back after a long break but it was always the plan to have an autumn campaign,” Smullen said. “His best run was his last race and if he reproduces that form we’re in business.”

Smullen misses out on Wexford’s Saturday card, where Leigh Roche steps in for the Weld runner, Alveena, in the opening fillies maiden.

Joseph O’Brien rides Los Barbados for Ballydoyle in the other maiden and is also reunited with the John Kiely-trained Henry’s Girl in the first of the handicaps.

 

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.