Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Papineau Steps Up for Gold Cup Challenge

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Papineau Steps Up for Gold Cup Challenge

Article excerpt

Byline: By William Hayler

Godolphin unveiled a potential star in the staying division as Papineau made a successful step up to two miles at Sandown yesterday.

The former French-trained colt, now unbeaten in two starts for his new connections, survived a stewards' inquiry to take the bonusprint.com Henry II Stakes.

Gold Cup hero Mr Dinos, bidding to win the Sandown race for the second year running, suffered interference in the closing stages as he tried to get on terms with the winner, who hung right as he hit the front.

As a result winning jockey Frankie Dettori was banned for two days (June 11-12) for careless riding, but it never seemed likely that the stewards would take the race away from his mount.

Papineau (9-4) took up the running from stablemate New South Wales with just under three furlongs to run as favourite Mr Dinos (2-1) was caught a bit flat-footed.

He had pulled a couple of lengths clear by the time Fallon was able to get the runner-up into full stride, and eventually won by a length and a half, with a further length and a half to New South Wales.

Godolphin supremo Sheikh Mohammed is walking with a real spring in his step at the moment as Vodafone Derby weekend approaches ever nearer.

And he and Dettori were both clearly delighted with this Group Two success for a colt who bounced off the fast ground.

"He had the race won by the time he started hanging and although it is frustrating to get a ban, you have got to be pleased with the way he ran," said Dettori.

"He is a real good galloper and if the boss wants to step him up in trip again and go for the Gold Cup, then I say bring it on."

Racing manager Simon Crisford confirmed that Ascot and an attempt to take Mr Dinos's crown would be the plan.

"Frankie said that the horse has a lot of class and, all being well, we will head towards the Gold Cup with him," reported Crisford. …

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