Belfast Telegraph

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Fame aims for Vintage glory

Jockey Joseph O'Brien has warned Fame And Glory is likely to improve for the run ahead of his seasonal reappearance in the Vintage Crop Stakes at Navan on Sunday.

The multiple Group One winner was successfully converted into a top stayer last season, winning the Gold Cup at Royal Ascot and the British Champions Long Distance Cup at the same track.

However, he was beaten at long odds-on when making his seasonal return two years ago and only scraped home in this race last season. His rider, son of trainer Aidan O'Brien, admits he will not be at the very top of his game.

"Jamie Spencer would normally ride him, but I believe he's suspended on Sunday, so it's nice I've been able to come in for the ride," said O'Brien jnr.

"He's a good horse and he seems in good form at home, but he in particular is a horse who improves a lot for his first run of the year.

"He's quite laid-back at home and he's a year older and a year wiser, but it's a good place to start him off and I'm looking forward to it."

Fame And Glory faces no easy task conceding upwards of 7lb to each of his six opponents in the one-mile-six-furlong Listed contest.

Steps To Freedom reverts to the Flat after disappointing in the Supreme Novices' Hurdle at Cheltenham and, most recently, at Fairyhouse.

Trainer Jessica Harrington said: "He seems in good form at home and we're looking forward to running him, I just hope the ground stays good. He wants decent ground and hopefully he'll get that on Sunday."

Another horse switching back to the Flat from hurdling is the Robbie Hennessy-trained Table Mountain. Dermot Weld and Moyglare Stud Farm are represented by Notable Graduate and the talented mare Unaccompanied. Rising Wind and Lovers Peace complete the field.


From Belfast Telegraph