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Eve Johnson Houghton targets Newbury success ahead of Flat season's return





Eve Johnson Houghton’s unbeaten son of Havana Gold is bidding for a sixth consecutive victory in Saturday’s Group 3 Watership Down Stud Too Darn Hot Greenham Stakes. Streets of Gold is one of twelve entered in Newbury’s feature race on Saturday who hold entries in the QIPCO 2,000 Guineas.

Streets of Gold has been a flag bearer for Johnson Houghton’s Berkshire yard, winning five races as a two-year-old including the €300,000 Tattersalls Ireland Super Auction Sales Stakes. Eve is pleased with how preparations have gone so far this year: “He is really well; he has wintered well so I’m very happy with him. He's not the biggest horse and he hasn't grown, but he's filled out and muscled up. He seems in great form. He has never been a flashy work horse, but he’s been working much better this year, so we are very pleased with him. It’s no easy feat to win five on the bounce, he just kept rolling and getting better and better.”

A £27,000 purchase from Tattersalls Ireland September Yearling sale, the three-year-old will start his season in Saturday’s Watership Down Stud Too Darn Hot Greenham Stakes, the feature race of the Dubai Duty Free Spring Trials meeting. Eve regards the Group 3 as an ideal starting point for the year: “It’s a great starting point for him, I love Newbury as a racecourse, it is just down the road from us. Historically it’s a fantastic race, my father won it a couple of times.”

Newbury Racecourse is set for the return of the Flat season
Newbury Racecourse is set for the return of the Flat season

After handling sticky ground conditions at The Curragh, Eve has no real concerns regarding ground, however, top of the ground would be most preferable for Streets of Gold who will once again be partnered by Charlie Bishop.

The Watership Down Stud Too Darn Hot Greenham Stakes entries are headed by another locally trained contender in Chaldean. Trained by Andrew Balding for owners Juddmonte, Eve identified the son of Frankel as a leading contender: “It is a very hot renewal of the Greenham, Chaldean looked very impressive when winning the Dewhurst well, he would be the obvious danger.”

Saturday’s feature race acts a starting point for many targeting the QIPCO 2,000 Guineas, Eve added: “If Streets of Gold wins the Greenham or runs well in the Greenham he will be heading for the English 2,000 Guineas. I would be very confident that he would handle the undulations at Newmarket, he is a very balanced horse. I have no concerns with trip, his pedigree suggests he will stay but he has shown so much speed, we can drop him back in trip if necessary.”

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Other notable entries following Monday’s entries deadline include the Charlie Appleby trained winner of the Group 2 Gimcrack, Noble Style. The unbeaten son of Kingman could be making his seasonal reappearance at Newbury and have his first run over 7f. Theoryofeverything, trained by John and Thady Gosden, was an impressive winner at Doncaster and may return for his second run this Saturday when stepping up in grade.

Two other Group races feature on Saturday’s card including the Group 3 Dubai Duty Free Stakes (The Fred Darling Stakes) and the Group 3 Dubai Duty Free Finest Surprise Stakes (The John Porter Stakes). Last year’s winner of The John Porter Stakes, Max Vega (R.Beckett) holds an entry to attempt back to back victories with ground conditions likely to suit. The 2021 St Leger winner and runner up, Hurricane Lane (C.Appleby) and Mojo Star (R.Hannon) both hold entries in the 1m4f contest alongside Yibir, last seen when winning the Princess of Wales’s Close Brothers Stakes (Group 2) back in July 2022.

Locally trained Clochette (A.Balding) holds entries in both The Fred Darling and QIPCO 1,000 Guineas and may be seen making her seasonal reappearance on Saturday. John and Thady Gosden have three entered including Fully Wet, Bridestones and Soul Sister in the 7f Group 3 contest. Other notable entries include first and second in the Group 2 Sky Bet Lowther Stakes Swingalong (K. Burke) and Queen Me (K. Ryan).



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