Glorious Journey has twice scored at G3 level in France for trainer Charlie Appleby.
Group-winning four-year-old Glorious Journey moves back up in class and trip for the G3 Criterion Stakes over seven furlongs at Newmarket, UK, on Saturday.
He went down by a length to Dream Of Dreams on his latest outing in the six-furlong Listed Leisure Stakes at Windsor on May 20, with the winner subsequently finishing a close second to Godolphin’s sprinting star Blue Point in the G1 Diamond Jubilee Stakes at Royal Ascot.
The son of Dubawi has twice scored at G3 level in France for trainer Charlie Appleby, including when staying on well for a comfortable victory in the Prix Daphnis over a mile at Deauville in August.
Glorious Journey, with James Doyle in the saddle and drawn seven of the eight runners, takes on G1 winners Limato and Suedois, the first two home in the six-furlong 2016 G1 Darley July Cup.
Charlie Appleby commented: “We were very pleased with Glorious Journey’s last run at Windsor, particularly with Dream Of Dreams going on to frank the form at Royal Ascot.
“We feel that seven furlongs is going to suit him and a repeat of his Windsor run will make him very competitive.”
Charlie Appleby and James Doyle also team up in two Listed races at Newmarket on Saturday. Two-year-old Kingman filly Summer Romance lines up in the six-furlong Empress Stakes following an easy debut win over the same distance at Yarmouth on June 13. She is drawn five of the seven participants.
The trainer added: “Summer Romance won very easily at Yarmouth and came out of the race well.
“We contemplated running her in the Albany Stakes at Royal Ascot, but felt that it was a bit too soon and this race fits nicely in terms of timing.
“We think that she is a nice filly and she looks the one to beat.”
Walton Street, a five-year-old son of Cape Cross, was successful in a 12-furlong turf handicap at last year’s Dubai World Cup Carnival at Meydan. He makes his first start since February in the Listed Fred Archer Stakes over a mile and a half and meets three rivals.
Charlie Appleby commented: “Walton Street is making his first European appearance of the year and will come forward on whatever he does here.
“He showed some good form last year and doesn’t look out of place in this field, but we expect him to improve for the run.”
Elsewhere, at Belmont Park in the US on Saturday, progressive filly Classic Fit steps up to G2 company for her three-year-old return in the Mother Goose Stakes over an extended mile on dirt.
The daughter of Bernardini, trained by Michael Stidham, has been successful on three of her four appearances, all over a mile, and stayed on gamely to score by a neck on her latest outing in the Hut Hut Stakes on dirt at Gulfstream Park in December. She quickened strongly from the rear to take an allowance optional claimer on Tapeta at Presque Isle Downs in October and captured a Monmouth Park maiden on dirt in September. Jose Lezcano comes in for the ride on Classic Fit, drawn two, who tackles five other three-year-old fillies including G2 Gulfstream Park Oaks second Dunbar Road plus Jeltrin and Cassies Dreamer, who have both placed at G1 level.
Michael Stidham said: “Classic Fit has been training well and we have been very happy with her progress since she came back into training.
“She handled everything we asked of her last year and we feel that she has matured and filled out a lot. “It is a big step going straight into a Graded race after a lay-off, but we feel confident in the way Classic Fit is training and wanted to take a shot at a race like this.”
On the same card, four-year-old Bernardini filly Too Charming (Tom Albertrani/Eric Cancel, drawn five of the five runners), winner of the Tropical Park Oaks at Gulfstream Park in December, goes for a second Stakes victory on turf in the Perfect Sting Stakes over a mile.
Meanwhile, on Friday, Iridessa sprang a surprise to add a second Group 1 to her tally by winning the Pretty Polly Stakes at the Curragh for Wayne Lordan and Joseph O’Brien.
Iridessa, who had settled on the inside tracking the pace cut out by Wild Illusion, was always going nicely and came through strongly to win by two and a quarter lengths.
The Aidan O’Brien-trained Magic Wand, who travelled well under Donnacha O’Brien, finished runner-up, while stablemate Pink Dogwood, the 11-10 favourite, was a disappointing third.
Three-year-old colts Roman Candle and Jalmoud bid for a first G1 success in the Grand Prix de Paris over a mile and a half at Longchamp, France, on Sunday.
Glorious Journey steps up to G1 level for the first time in one of Europe’s premier sprints, the Darley July Cup, highlight of the third and final day of the July Meeting at Newmarket on Saturday.
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