Monday 20 August 2018

Will Poet's Word Claim Irish Champions Stakes Redemption?

Poet’s Word has enjoyed an outstanding season for Sir Michael Stoute and will be looking to end his flat campaign on a high note with a win at the Irish Champion Stakes in September. The Irish horse has won all three races of his races in England this term, and will be eyeing another victory in his next outing when he returns to home soil for the meet at Leopardstown. 

Stoute’s charge will be facing a lot of impressive competitors in the race. Saxon Warrior, Roaring Lion and Cracksman will all be vying for the place in the winners’ circle. As a result, Poet’s Word will have to work extremely hard to notch his fourth triumph on the bounce, with the bay horse’s odds coming in at 3/1 in the horse racing betting at William Hill, although that will change before the horses are lined up and ready for the off. 

Poet’s Word made a real charge to win the Irish Champion Stakes last season. With James Doyle in the saddle, he made a surge down the final stretch of the race, only to be beaten by outsider Decorated Knight for the crown by half-a-length. The Champion Stakes at Ascot proved to be the same story, only on this occasion he and the rest of the field were comfortably beaten by Cracksman

The five-year-old put forward a decent performance in Meydan to start the new term, placing second behind Hawkbill in the Dubai Sheema Classic. The race allowed him to find his form for the start of the English flat campaign, beginning at Sandown Park in the Brigadier Gerard Stakes. Ryan Moore took to the saddle and helped his charge control the race from start-to-finish. He was able to keep pace with the leader at a comfortable pace before moving ahead with one furlong remaining. The Irish horse powered down the straight to win by two-and-a-quarter lengths.

He carried that form into his race of the season at Royal Ascot. Poet’s Word faced a familiar opponent in Cracksman, who was considered the favourite for the Prince Of Wales's Stakes. Doyle reclaimed his position on Stoute’s charge, although the race did not begin how he would have liked as the Irish horse was slightly off the pace in fifth. Poet’s Word found the space on the outside and was able to pull into contention before finding an extra gear down the stretch. He had the speed to pull away to finish ahead of his rival by two-and-three-quarter lengths. 

Poet’s Word faced off against his stable-mate Crystal Ocean at the King George VI And Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot. The Irish horse had a poor start to the race as he was held up in the rear, but Doyle managed to pull him away from the cluttered field into space on the outside. He made gradual headway two furlongs to pull within striking distance of his rival. Poet’s Word just had the pace down the stretch to beat out Crystal Ocean for the win, clinching the win by a neck. He has the proven quality to win the Irish Champion Stakes and the Irish horse should be able to go one further and claimed the crown in September.