Baaeed Aiming to Emulate Famous Sire at York’s Ebor Festival

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Baaeed Aiming to Emulate Famous Sire at York's Ebor Festival

It’s very easy to get overhyped about a racehorse, but Baaeed deserves all the attention he is getting. The English colt bred at Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s Shadwell Estate and trained by William Haggas, burst onto the scene in 2021, winning his first six races including the Sir Henry Cecil Stakes (Newmarket), Thoroughbred Stakes (Goodwood), Prix du Moulin (Longchamp), and Queen Elizabeth II Stakes (Ascot). He has backed up that form in 2022, winning three more races including the Group 1 Sussex Stakes at Glorious Goodwood in July.

Big shoes to fill

The son of Sea the Stars is already being hailed as a superstar miler after dominating the eight-furlong division. His next challenge will be to match the achievements of his sire by winning the Juddmonte International Stakes at York on August 17.

The race is considered one of the most prestigious on the flat racing calendar and was won by Sea the Stars back in 2009. The event represents a step up in distance for Baaeed at 1m 2f, but he looks more than ready to go the extra yards. This is reflected in the horse racing odds, where he is currently priced at -200 to claim victory ahead of a strong field including last year’s winner Mishriff priced at +400.

Strong contenders

Still a relative newcomer, Baaeed has shown maturity and a turn of pace that has left some decent runners in his wake. His class was on full display on Day Two of Goodwood when he put in a stunning performance to maintain his 100% record.

Derby winner Desert Crown won’t be competing in York and Mishriff has endured a dip in form since winning last year. But John and Thady Gosden will have the latter horse well prepared for this as he attempts to become the first horse since 1994 (Ezzoud) to win back-to-back International Stakes. The five-year-old was third in King George at Ascot last time out.

Another contender could be Native Trail, who finished second in the 2000 Guineas at Newmarket earlier this year before bouncing back in style to win the Irish 2000 Guineas at the Curragh. A poor follow-up at the Group 1 Eclipse Stakes at Sandown Park has raised doubts about his chances to make an impact in York. However, he remains the third favorite at +800.

One to watch

Nashwa and mount Hollie Doyle caught the eye with a stunning performance in the Group 1 Qatar Nassau Stakes at Goodwood. The pair sat in last place and appeared to be enjoying a gentle gallop until they reached the three-furlong marker. But just as it looked as though they had left it too late, Doyle moved Nashwa out wide and stepped on the gas. The horse lengthened its stride in the manner some have compared to the great Frankel and picked off the other runners one by one to win by two lengths. Nashwa is available at a generous +1200 for the International Stakes, which should attract some each-way interest.

The inclusion of Prince of Wales’s Stakes winner State of Rest ensures that there is plenty of depth in the starting line-up. However, it is hard to see anyone getting the better of Baaeed at this stage.