Trainer Richard Hannon has never made any secret of the high esteem in which he holds Barney Roy (3c Excelebration-Alina, by Galileo) and the Excelebration colt did not disappoint at Newbury on Saturday.
A runaway maiden winner on his only start at two, the colt was subsequently bought privately by Godolphin and made a brilliant start for his new owners as he swooped late to win the G3 Greenham Stakes by two lengths in superb stye.
Barney Roy, bred by Eliza Park International, is now just a 5/1 chance for the G1 2,000 Guineas in a fortnight’s time and Hannon is looking forward to the colts’ Classic.
“I was a bit worried coming back from a mile to seven furlongs and you can see why, as he just took his time getting going,” said Hannon. “I thought he was in trouble four down then he went ‘whoosh’. I’ve liked him for a long time, though.
“He has got a chance of going to the Guineas. He will get a trip as well now that he is more relaxed. I did say in the summer he might get a Derby trip, whether he gets that far I don’t know. I definitely think he will stay further, but a strong-run mile will suit him well.”
Jockey James Doyle was similarly impressed and commented: “Once I gave him a couple of taps his stride pattern changed and he got lower to the ground and lengthened and galloped right through the line. He’s crying out for a step up to a mile and will stay beyond that, no problem. He was still having a look after the line and will learn so much from that.”