Point Lonsdale will try to cement his position at the top of next year’s Classic betting by putting his unbeaten record on the line at the Curragh on Saturday evening.
So far the full brother to Broome can boast a perfect three from three CV including wins in the Chesham at Royal Ascot and the Tyros Stakes at Leopardstown last time.
Now Point Lonsdale follows a tried and trusted route to the Group Two Galileo Futurity where he faces two Ballydoyle stable companions, a pair of Joseph O'Brien-trained rivals, and a single representative from Jim Bolger.
The latter’s Manu Et Corde will try to emulate Mac Swiney, who sprang a 28-1 surprise in last year’s Futurity before going on to Classic glory in this season’s Irish Guineas.
He is the fourth Futurity winner in the last seven years to subsequently land a Classic, including the ill-fated Derby hero Anthony Van Dyck in 2018.
However, it is Aidan O’Brien who has been the overwhelmingly dominant trainer in recent decades, with 13 previous winners, nine of which have gone on to score at the top level.
Point Lonsdale is already a general 10-1 favourite for next year’s Guineas and Derby and his proven ability on various types of ground should make him tough to beat.
The most inexperienced Futurity runner will be the other ‘Point’ and Point Gellibrand could prove a danger considering he was only just beaten after meeting plenty of trouble on his single start to date.
Ryan Moore travels to the Curragh to team up with five Ballydoyle runners in all so misses out on the final day of York and the hugely valuable Ebor Handicap.
Johnny Murtagh saddles two of the four Irish Ebor hopes with Ben Coen on Sonnboyliston and the Derby-winning jockey Adam Kirby on Mirann. Murtagh landed the Ebor with Mutual Regard in 2014.
Co Dublin trainer Karl Thornton has a shot at a major pot with Shanroe while Willie Mullins will try to repeat his 2009 victory with Sesenta through the former bumper and hurdles winner Mt Leinster.
Mullins failed to land a blow in Friday’s Lonsdale Cup with Stratum who finished last of the four runners behind Stradivarius.
The hugely popular winner got the better of a sustained duel with Spanish Mission to regain winning form by a head under Frankie Dettori.
It was an 18th career success for Stradivarius, who has been the outstanding stayer of the last decade.
"He's phenomenal to have won four Goodwood Cups, to win three [Ascot] Gold Cups, three Lonsdales, two Yorkshire Cups and the Doncaster Cup. Full marks to him. A great performance and we'll see what we want to do now," said his trainer, John Gosden.
“The horse will tell us [about retirement]. It’s not our decision. As long as he’s enjoying his training and racing then we keep on. When that starts fading then we’ll stop,” he added.
The filly Winter Power provided a local Yorkshire success in the Nunthorpe Stakes for trainer Tim Easterby.