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Boy can join the top rank of milers.

Byline: Tanya Stevenson

CROWD pleaser Paco Boy may never have an easier chance of adding Newbury's Lockinge Stakes to his already burgeoning CV.

By doing so he would finally silence the many critics who ever doubted him being a true and proper miler. The soft ground scuppered Paco Boy's chances of victory 12 months ago but he still battled on bravely for fourth just two lengths behind Virtual.

Richard Hannon's star has won nine of his 15 starts on turf and over pounds 700,000 in prize money.

Also when Richard Hughes has teamed up with him the pair have won six and been second once.

Paco Boy started his season off well with a win in the Group 2 Bet365 Mile. Sandown's mile accentuates his burst of speed and he had his rivals measure with two furlongs to go.

The Cheka who was third reopposes and Kieren Fallon was very complimentary regarding the horse. Thus it's no surprise to see the partnership renewed.

The Cheka has been very lightly raced so the potential for improvement is enormous.

Up until last season Zacinto's career had been blighted by injury. All the problems were put behind him when landing the Celebration Mile at Goodwood.

However he found Rip Van Winkle too strong in the QE II Stakes at Ascot, something he and Paco Boy have in common.

I have no problem with putting a line through his run in the Breeders' Cup Mile. After making a bad step he virtually pulled up.

Pipedreamer is now trained by Kevin Ryan. A regular at tackling ten furlongs the strong pace of the Lockinge could be just what he needs and it is he who could prove to be Paco Boy's biggest danger.

After winning the Group One Prix Jean Prat at Chantilly, Lord Shanakill finished lame in the Sussex Stakes yet was only six lengths behind Paco Boy. He makes his debut for Henry Cecil today.

Hughie Morrison enters his Stimulation and it's significant enough that he has kept him in training let alone decided to run him in the Lockinge.

He's entered at Royal Ascot in the Prince Of Wales's Stakes so watch today with June in mind.

Sir Michael Stoute is the most successful trainer in the Lockinge with seven wins and his Zacinto is a classy animal.

However if the rain stays away, I feel PACO BOY (3.05) will finally earn the glory of being a great miler. His main danger is likely to be Pipedreamer.

The London Gold Cup is a ten furlong handicap for those threeyear-olds just on the cusp of top class. Just a shame there's only 15 runners for each-way backers.

Mark Johnston won the race in 2005 and 2007. He is doubly represented today. Dr Zhivago was a very long way behind Coordinated Cut at Newmarket but there were excuses as he was hampered in running.

Monterosso is a triumph for the Mark Johnston team. He has progressed from the all weather to beat Musidora third Eleanora Duse at Ripon.

Bonfire Knight looks totally unexposed after he ran a strange race at Beverley last time. Leading early then coming again close home.

Alan Jarvis runs Right Step who was second to the enigmatic Wigmore Hall at Newmarket.

Many will latch on to Sir Michael Stoute's Verdant but I prefer to stick to MONTEROSSO (2.30) to land a four-timer.

At first glance the Aston Park Stakes looks a match between the Godolphin pair Sabotage and Claremont.

Claremont didn't come on from his third to the classy Harbinger at Newbury and instead struggled behind Jukebox Jury.

Sabotage has it all to do with Red Merlin on a line of form through Munsef.

But for his Ebor run RED MERLIN (2.00) would be the nap of the day.

He never seemed to be going well from the off. Prior, he landed the Old Newton Cup.

This could be an opportunity to gain some black type.

Newmarket also features on Channel 4.

DAJEN (2.15) looks ahead of the handicapper and Laura Pike more than offsets the fact the pair are out of the handicap.

I also like the look of HARRIS TWEED (2.45) and CHIBERTA KING (3.25).

Tanya's Torpedo

Newbury's maidens on this day are rarely won by the favourite so look elsewhere at 1.25, 4.50 and 5.25.


Hannon: Paco looks for glory
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:May 15, 2010
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