With the St Leger at Doncaster now just a matter of days away, the final fifteen runners for the famous meeting have now been confirmed, with trainer Aidan O’Brien potentially running three horses, including current favourite Idaho. The recent Great Voltigeur Stakes winner is once again set to be the horse to beat, however Sword Fighter, Housesofparliament, Kellstorm, The Major General, Triplicate and Unicorn also in contention for the champion trainer. The fact that former contender Wings of Desire has withdrawn from the race only heightens Idaho’s chances of claiming yet another win in 2016.
Idaho is the current favourite for victory with bookmakers Betway with odds of 4/5 on, with Muntahaa and Housesofparliament further adrift at 5/1 and 8/1 respectively. With former Dante Stakes Winner Wings of Desire pulling out late on, Muntahaa is the obvious replacement, with the Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum owned former second-best in the ante-post market likely to apply strong pressure among the chasing pack.
Elsewhere, Ed Dunlop's Red Verdon has received plenty of backing thanks to a series of good results at the highest level this season, most notably when finishing second in the Grand Prix de Paris. Despite this, Dunlop has warned against too much expectation on his prized asset, with preparations for the race being far from straightforward due to health issues. In the horse racing at Betway.com, Red Vernon can currently be backed at 8/1.
Conditions for Britain’s oldest classic are set to be good to soft, soft in places as a result of recent weather in the North of England, with such a track unlikely to provide too much of an advantage to any of the frontrunners. As far as jockeys are concerned for the £700,000 race, title-chasing Silvestre de Sousa and Jim Crowley will lead Ventura Storm Algometer respectively, while James Doyle partners Red Verdon.
With the Irish St Leger taking place at Curragh on Sunday afternoon, Order of St George is undoubtedly the overwhelming favourite at Betway for the race, with the former Ascot Gold Cup winner at odds of just 1/3 on. For those of you looking to back an outsider for the meeting, Bondi Beach and Big Orange could well be worth a shout, with the duo set to provide the fiercest competition if recent form is anything to go by.