Hannon casts doubt over Mehmas Guineas challenge


Mehmas grinding out victory in the Richmond Stakes on Thursday

  PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)  

IN THE aftermath of a splendid success in the Group 2 Richmond Stakes at Goodwood on Thursday, Richard Hannon has cast doubt over the chances of Mehmas in next year’s Qipco 2,000 Guineas, suggesting he may not train on into his three-year-old campaign.

The son of Acclamation showed a gritty determination to deny odds-on favourite Blue Point, fulfilling the confidence of his trainer prior to the race. He was subsequently cut to between 10-1 and 20-1 for the first Classic of 2017.

Hannon indicated his main aim with Mehmas was to win a Group 1 with the Al Shaqab Racing-owned colt this year, with the Prix Morny or National Stakes next before a possible tilt at the Dewhurst Stakes.

Beyond that, the former champion trainer was far from bullish in his assessment of Mehmas going on to make his mark at Newmarket next May.

‘Not much of him’

“As for next year’s Guineas, I don’t really know,” said Hannon, writing in his Stan James blog. “He’s now 10-1 for that race which could be a very big price but I’ve always said this horse was very precocious and wasn’t convinced he’d train on.

“There’s not much of him, physically. That said, it would be foolish to rule anything out and time will tell.”

Acclamation’s top rated two-year-old Harbour Watch, trained by Richard Hannon snr, won the Richmond Stakes in 2011 before having to be retired due to injury. Richard Hannon won the race with Ivawood in 2014, who went on to be third in the 2,000 Guineas.


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