Art Power to make speedy reappearance in Sapphire heat

July Cup fourth Art Power is set to make a swift return to action in the Barberstown Castle Sapphire Stakes at the Curragh on Saturday.

Tim Easterby’s charge has already won three times at the home of Irish Flat racing, landing back-to-back renewals of the Group Three Renaissance Stakes in 2021 and 2022 as well as striking gold in the Group Two Greenlands Stakes earlier this season.

The six-year-old was well beaten in the Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Stakes at Royal Ascot, but showed his true colours back on an easier surface at Newmarket last weekend, finishing just under three lengths behind fellow Yorkshire-trained speedster Shaquille.

Art Power will be sent back into battle just seven days later as he bids for a first win over five furlongs since plundering the Palace of Holyroodhouse Handicap at the Royal meeting three years ago.

“He ran an absolute cracker in the July Cup and he leaves on Thursday night for Ireland. He loves it there, it’s down to five furlongs but we think he’ll run a good race,” said Easterby’s son and assistant William.

“I think he prefers cut in the ground but it’s not vital. He’s run well on good to firm in the past, but slower ground does just slow the others down.

“He wasn’t born far from the Curragh and it’s an amazing thing, horses for courses, it seems to work.

“We love training in Yorkshire and we’ve lots of horses who like the tracks in Yorkshire, but when you find one who likes it somewhere, you run them there.”

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