10th November, 2011 - Posted by Elliot Slater - Comments Off
Richard Hannon’s high-class juvenile Harbour Watch, unbeaten in all three outings this season but an absentee from his intended final start of the campaign the Group 1 Dewhurst Stakes at Newmarket last month after suffering a setback in training, may yet make the starting line-up for the Qipco 2000 Guineas at Newmarket in May, writes Elliot Slater.
Ante-post markets and horse racing betting circles for the first colts’ classic of the 2012 season were thrown into turmoil when news broke that Harbour Watch may not make the big race, but a month on from his HQ absence Hannon feels that all is not lost for the son of Acclamation who put up a series of fine performances earlier this season to stamp himself a genuine contender for honours in the top grade next term.
Horse racing betting news reports that Hannon’s charge is now recovering well from his leg injury and he refused to rule out the possibility that owner Robin Heffer’s horse would re-appear on the Rowley Mile early next campaign. The facile winner of a Salisbury maiden contest on his racecourse bow at the Wiltshire track in mid-June, Harbour Watch then stepped up in class to defeat the very classy Burwaaz (subsequently a short-head second to Requinto in the Group 2 Flying Childers Stakes at Doncaster), in a Newmarket conditions event three weeks later.
On what transpired to be his final outing of his juvenile season Harbour Watch justified even money favouritism and cruised to an impressive victory under Richard Hughes over Bannock in the Group 2 Tanqueray Richmond Stakes at Glorious Goodwood, catapulting himself to the head of the ante-post market for next year’s 2000 Guineas. Subsequent performances by the brilliant Camelot, Nephrite and Dabirsim have seen the Goodwood winner moved down the ante-post list, but should he return to full fitness then Hannon’s colt could well play a major role in the destiny of the mile classic next spring.