Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Will It Be Too Soggy for Main Attraction?

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Will It Be Too Soggy for Main Attraction?

Article excerpt

Byline: By Nick Grant

Johnston's fear for Newmarket going

Middleham trainer Mark Johnston was keeping his fingers crossed yesterday that the dark clouds stay away from Newmarket as his star filly Attraction bids to extend her fabulous unbeaten record to nine at Headquarters today.

The dual Classic heroine faces arguably her stiffest test to date in the UAE Equestrian And Racing Federation Falmouth Stakes, with older horses lying in wait for the first time.

But ground conditions ( currently good ( were occupying Johnston's thoughts first and foremost yesterday.

"The ground is okay provided it stays that way but we'd like to see it drying out, to be honest. We don't want any hint of soft in it. That would very much be a concern," he said.

"She's absolutely fine and everything has been spot on. The older horses may give her a test. It's something new and we'll find out on the day."

Clerk of the course Michael Prosser said yesterday : "There is an outside chance of showers on the day of the race, but fairly isolated and sporadic and there is every chance we will be dry.

"When the sun comes out we are talking about pleasant temperatures of around 20 or 21 degrees.

"I understand Mark Johnston will be walking the course first thing in the morning before the race."

Kevin Darley will once again be on board Attraction as she seeks her fourth Group One success following the English 1000 Guineas, the Irish equivalent and the Coronation Stakes.

"I haven't sat on her since Royal Ascot, but she is in good form and I am looking forward to riding her again," he said.

"She will be taking on some battle-hardened horses, but she will be getting 9lb from some of them and I won't be doing anything different to what I have done before.

"She is a high-class filly and she is the one they all have to beat." James Fanshawe's Soviet Song, second-favourite with all firms, was reported in tip-top form ahead of her bid to spoil the party for the Attraction team. …

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