MIKE de Kock trained, South African raider Shea Shea, is 5-1 joint favourite with “Paddy Power” for the Darley July Cup over six furlongs at Newmarket on Saturday 13 July. He worked 5f under work rider Philip Shea (what’s in a name!) at Newmarket’s July Course on Monday morning.
Shea Shea found just Sole Power, who could be double-handed in the July Cup with both Slade Power and Sole Power, a neck too powerful in the King’s Stand Stakes at Royal Ascot after Johnny Murtagh came with a thumping late run inside the final furlong on the Edward Lynam-trained contestant.
Mike De Kock’s assistant Steve Jell said: “Shea Shea is a lot more settled after racing at Royal Ascot after a long break and he was fresh going into the race.
“We didn’t run him again at Ascot as there are so many races in a season and we didn’t want to punish him. There’s a good couple of races at York and one in France later on.
“He ran a good enough race at Ascot anyway. It was really gutting as he was in front such a long time and he would have liked to have been pulled through a bit more. He’s more settled now and hopefully he will settle off the pace a bit more and make a run late.
“That was a pretty good piece of work this morning and we will analyse the times when we get home. Sure it’s a different track but people could see him on it this morning – he galloped here before Ascot and that’s his second piece now so he knows what’s going on.
“Christophe Soumillon will ride him in the July Cup and he’ll be our only runner at the meeting. I think he’d be able to run seven furlongs so six shouldn’t be a problem for him.
“We’re still waiting to win a Group 1 in England but we’ve not run too many top-class horses here. It will come eventually – you need the right horse and it will come.”
Darley July Cup
Paddy Power: 5 Shea Shea, Lethal Force, 6 Society Rock, 8 Pearl Secret, Reckless Abandon, 10 Slade Power, Sole Power, Gale Force Ten, 12 Gordon Lord Byron, 14 Krypton Factor, 16 Shamexpress, Hawkeyethenoo, Jack Dexter, 20 bar