QIPCO British Champions Day 2020: Dark Horses

We’ve scoured the latest entries for some bigger priced runners who could outrun their odds on Champions Day

QIPCO British Champions Day has once again attracted  the big names in it’s early entry stage. Names like Ghaiyyath, Magical and Kameko catch the eye, but there are plenty of lesser-known names that stand a great opportunity of taking home a big prize.

We’ve picked out some dark horses who could make a big splash next month.

Lord North – QIPCO Champion Stakes

The QIPCO Champion Stakes is always a star-studded affair. You only need to take a look at the roll of honour to know that it is going to take a top middle distance performer to land the prize. Cirrus Des Aigles, Farhh, Cracksman, Magical and of course, Frankel have all triumphed in the day’s showpiece.

The one that catches the eye is Lord North who is currently priced around 8/1. He’s come-of-age this year, rising through the handicap ranks to landing the prestigious Group 1 Prince Of Wales’s Stakes at Royal Ascot this year.

Not only did he win it, he did it in emphatic style, showing an electric turn of foot to scorch away from his rivals. He beat last year’s QIPCO Champion Stakes Addeybb convincingly, as well as Group 1 winners Japan and Barney Roy in the process.

He wasn’t able to show his best last time when third in the Juddmonte International, Ghaiyyath blowing away the field that day. He won’t be inconvenienced by the ground on the day having won on surfaces ranging from Good all the way to Heavy. He’s certainly one to take seriously.

Safe Voyage – QEII Stakes (Sponsored by QIPCO)

The seven-year-old Safe Voyage has shown no sign of slowing down in 2020, following up a brilliant victory in the City Of York Stakes in August with Group 2 honours at Leopardstown last month.

Another strong showing in last weekend’s Group 1 Prix De La Foret where he finished a close third to old adversary One Master, staying on all the way to the line.

In a market dominated by Palace Pier at a shade of odds-on, Safe Voyage stands out as great value at 14/1. He was third in the race last year, so will handle the track and any give in the ground. He looks even better this season so is well placed to go even closer.

Glen Shiel – QIPCO Champions Sprint Stakes

Archie Watson’s six-year-old has been in phenomenal form this year, recording three wins and three second place finishes. Most recently he was a brilliant second to Dream Of Dreams and though he went off at 25/1 there was no fluke about the quality of his run.

He will be partnered by the rising star of British racing in Hollie Doyle, who’ll also be looking to get her first victory on Champions Day.

He has just under a length to find with Dream Of Dreams on the Betfair Sprint Cup form and at the price differences of 5/2 compared to Glen Shiel’s 14/1, there’s definitely some value.

Manuela De Vega – QIPCO Fillies & Mares Stakes

Ralph Beckett’s highly-rated filly has done little wrong this season, notching up convincing Group 2 and Group 3 wins at Haydock by a combined 7 1/2 lengths. She found waters a little hot in the Yorkshire Oaks against the all-conquering Love, eventually finishing fourth.

The QIPCO Fillies & Mares Stakes is wide-open at the moment as trainers decide where to place their horses. Manuela De Vega’s only entry is in this race and she will likely take her chance. She’s ground versatile having won on grounds ranging from Good to Soft this season. She will likely have to improve once again and prove she’s a Group 1 filly, but that’s not out of the question and she’s an eye-catcher at 14/1 currently given the uncertainty surrounding the market principles.

Stratum – QIPCO Long Distance Cup

Willie Mullins’ duel purpose runner re-announced himself as a stayer of substance in this year’s Group 2 Lonsdale Cup at York. A brutal test of a race, he was an eye-catching finisher in the final furlong and was closing on his now retired rival Enbihaar at the line.

There’s no doubting the former Cesarewitch Handicap winner stamina credentials and it’s easy to see why he’d produce another big run at large odds on the biggest stage.

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