Golden Pal is one of the highest-rated horses in the world rankings. The Wesley Ward-trained runner is expected to make the trip across to the UK for the Ebor Meeting, where the Group One Nunthorpe Stakes will be his target.
The four-year-old finished seventh in the race in 2021, but since then he has been successful in three of his four races, including the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint at the Breeders’ Cup Championship at Del Mar.
Golden Pal is +900 in the horse racing betting for the 5f race at York. He is likely to take on some of the leading two-year-old sprinters in the UK, including Royal Aclaim and Dramatised.
The US sprinter will be making his third appearance on European turf in the Nunthorpe, so with that experience on his side, he is likely to be one of the leading horse racing tips for the sprint contest.
Royal Ascot Chances Were Ruined from Starting Stalls
Golden Pal was fancied to run a big race in the King’s Stand Stakes at Royal Ascot earlier this season, however, his chances of success were ruined at the start. He came out of the stalls awkwardly, conceding several lengths to his rivals.
In order to make up the ground, his regular pilot Irad Ortiz had to ask his horse to quicken at full speed, which meant he wasted energy at the beginning of the contest. The sprinter had very little left inside the final two furlongs, when his rivals were at top speed.
Nature Strip proved too strong for the field in the leading sprint race at the royal meeting. The Australian horse enhanced his reputation further with the victory. Connections of the winner have decided against running their horse in any other prestigious sprint races in the UK this summer. He could return to defend his crown in the King’s Stand Stakes in 2023.
Ward Yet to Win Nunthorpe
Ward is one of the most successful American trainers in history. He has had a lot of success in Europe, however, the Nunthorpe Stakes is one of the few leading sprint races he has yet to win in the UK.
The closest Ward has come to claiming the Nunthorpe Stakes is by finishing in second place. Lady Aurelia was denied victory in 2017 by just a nose. She lost a photo finish with Marsha. When the two horses crossed the line, Frankie Dettori, the rider of the US-trained horse, raised his arm in the air. However, the photo print showed Marsha had won by a nose.
Ward also attempted to win the sprint race at York with Acapulco in 2015. On what was just her third career appearance, and following her victory in the Queen Mary Stakes, she finished second in the race which was won by Mecca’s Angel.
Golden Pal needs to bounce back from his disappointing performance at Ascot, however, his rating suggests he is a big player for Ward in the lucrative sprint contest. If successful, it would be one of the best wins of his career.