The St Leger 2021 will bring the curtain down on the United Kingdom's flat horse racing season. It may have entered the home straight but there is still plenty of action to fill the final furlongs.
When September arrives, all eyes will be on Doncaster racecourse where the last of the English Classics is held each year.
The St Leger Stakes also forms the last part of the English Triple Crown. But attempts at that epic feat have proved few and far between since Nijinsky became the last horse to win all three races over 50 years ago.
This year’s race holds special interest as the son of legendary horse Frankel is favourite to win in the ante-post horse racing odds. Hurricane Lane is available at an early price of 10/11, well clear of his nearest rivals. Hurricane Lane has won five of his six races so far, his only defeat a respectable third place in the Epsom Derby.
His last two wins, the Irish Derby and Grand Prix de Paris, were both Group 1 races, while he also landed the prestigious Group 2 Dante Stakes at York in May.
But can anyone beat the horse with the big reputation? Most horse racing betting tips experts think not but let’s take a look at a couple of those who could potentially spoil the party.
Hurricane Lane blows past Lone Eagle to deny Dettori in Irish Derby thriller https://t.co/ahybStQXjl— Guardian sport (@guardian_sport) June 27, 2021
Hurricane Lane's Stablemate Adayar, who triumphed in the Derby and King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes, was pencilled in for this race.
However, trainer Charlie Appleby is likely to send him to Paris to warm up for the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe instead, where there is much bigger prize money at stake.
Alenquer is an interesting prospect at an early price of 7/1 having beaten Adayar at Sandown in April before being well outpaced by Hurricane Lane at Longchamp in July.
More recently, the French horse came a respectable second to the highly-rated Mishriff at the Group 1 Juddmonte International Stakes at York. That performance bodes well for the Doncaster showdown with Hurricane Lane.
What a performance!— Racing TV (@RacingTV) August 18, 2021
Mishriff finally grabs his domestic Group 1 and is all class in the £1m Juddmonte International for @DavidEgan99 and John and Thady Gosden 👏 @yorkracecourse @JuddmonteFarms pic.twitter.com/ltXZA9EuNl
Also in the running is Lone Eagle who was only a neck back from Hurricane Lane in the Irish Derby.
His follow-up was less impressive when he gave away more than nine lengths to Adayar in the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot.
However, he remains a strong prospect and is available at a decent early price of 8/1.
Like Hurricane Lane, Mojo Star also has a famous parent. The son of Sea the Stars finished ahead of his rival when second in the Epsom Derby but fell well short when hampered two furlongs out in the Irish equivalent.
He eventually finished fifth, more than nine lengths back from Hurricane Lane and Lone Eagle. He’ll start at around 12/1 for this race.
Other contenders for the St Leger 2021 include Lucan (8/1) and Wordsworth (10/1) both trained by Aidan O’Brien who is aiming for his sixth winner in this race.
Joseph O’Brien, the trainer of last year’s winner, Galileo Chrome, has just a single entry in the shape of 33/1 shot Okita Soushi who was a maiden winner at Fairyhouse in June.
If all the contenders make it to the start line, we are in for an exciting conclusion to the Classic campaign.