Who will win the St Leger Stakes?
As the flat racing season begins to wind down and reach its conclusion, attention is turned in the direction of Doncaster for the St Leger Stakes. The final British classic of the year, a plethora of trainers will be looking to squeeze in an extra accolade in the world’s oldest classic — which has a history running back to the 1700’s, now hosted in the impressive new facilities in Yorkshire.
This race is different to others due to the mixed genders, both colts and fillies bought together to race for the near £400,000 first prize. Last year, the St Leger was raced behind closed doors due to the coronavirus pandemic, with Joseph O’Brien’s Galileo Chrome winning in an empty racecourse. With spectators back to pack out stands, this year will be as competitive as ever. Horse racing betting on Smarkets will show how many strong horses will be looking to claim victory and with so many great trainers and jockeys in attendance, it will be hard to select a clear winner. Read on, as we go through who we think has a chance to win this year’s St Leger Stakes.
After having a great start to the flat season with victory back in April at the Curragh, the Aidan O’Brien trained Wordsworth has struggled to find some consistency since. He has endured four consecutive defeats. However, they have been very close to the top spot, especially with the last two, which were really encouraging and stand him in good stead heading to Doncaster. O’Brien needs a good set of results to finish the season in strong fashion, with Wordsworth his best shot to make it a seventh personal victory in the St Leger Stakes.
With Galileo Chrome winning twelve months ago in such comfortable fashion, William Haggas will be looking to replicate Joseph O’Brien’s success and add to wins at Derby and the Epsom Oaks with his horse Alenquer. While his accolades may pale in comparison with some of the other horses on this list, he heads into Doncaster in good form with victories at Sandown and Ascot — overcoming a poor performance in the Grand Prix de Paris, which could really have affected his form heading into the final British classic for the season. His ability to bounce back and the resilience demonstrated in previous performances stands him in good stead to have a chance in this year’s competition.
Charlie Appleby entering a horse into this race comes with his reputation and experience as one of the best trainers around. One of the favourites for this years St Legers is one his horses — Hurricane Lane. Despite an underwhelming third place finish in the Derby at Epsom, he has still tasted success throughout the duration of this year’s flat racing season, with wins In the Dante Stakes and the Irish Derby. His dominant running style flattered to deceive in Surrey but over the 1m6f distance of the Doncaster racecourse for the St Leger, we think this could be a massive benefit. Depending on the surface and conditions on the day, we think Hurricane Lane has the best chance of victory.