- Sire-Dam -
One of the most memorable images of 2020 was trainer Roger Teal sprinting after his stable star, Oxted, after he had given him a landmark first Group 1 triumph in the Darley July Cup at Newmarket.
Perhaps Teal will invest in a pair of running shoes for 2021 because it seems unlikely to be Oxted’s last win at the highest level.
Oxted wins the Darley July Cup Stakes in thrilling style under @CierenFallonJr, who picks up his first Group 1 winner on just his second ride at the highest level!
— Champions Series (@ChampionsSeries) July 11, 2020
The gelding beat a top-class field with authority at Headquarters under Cieren Fallon and also ran a cracker on his next start when beaten about a length into fifth in the QIPCO British Champions Sprint on Champions Day at Ascot.
He travelled best of all but the combination of a 98-day absence and soft ground seemed to find him out in the closing stages. Perhaps crucially, he had missed an intended outing in the Sprint Cup at Haydock in between Newmarket and Ascot because of a dirty scope.
Teal said after the July Cup: “A massive shout out to the whole team back home and especially Harry (Teal) who rides him every day, while my wife Sue looks after him in the stable. Harry said to me last week ‘this wins the July Cup’ and I said ‘keep your feet on the floor’.
“When we tacked him up he said ‘Dad, this will win today’ so he was confident. We watched him do an explosive piece of work in the week, but we didn’t want to get ourselves too carried away as we have been here before and sometimes you set yourself up to fail, but this horse is amazing and it was brilliant.”
Oxted has still had only ten runs and, with possibly still even more to come, he seems certain to be a force in all of the summer’s big sprints. The Diamond Jubilee at Royal Ascot in June, July Cup, Sprint Cup and Champions Sprint are all obvious targets.