Juniper Berries, fourth in the Queen Mary Stakes at Royal Ascot, looks set to be handed a Weatherbys Super Sprint berth by trainer Eve Johnson Houghton.
The speedy filly made good headway under Charles Bishop in the five-furlong Group Two contest, only for her run to flatten out inside the final furlong, finishing four lengths behind American raider Crimson Advocate.
Runner-up to Relief Rally at Salisbury on her second start, that form was franked when her conqueror finished two places in front of her again.
“Juniper Berries is a lovely filly. I think she just got outstayed, I don’t know,” said the Blewbury handler.
“I think she is an out-and-out five-furlong filly, although I might be wrong. To me, she’s a speedball.
“I thought she ran a great race and the form stands up from Salisbury.
“She is in the Super Sprint – we might go there, as she has a nice low weight in there, or possibly to Goodwood, I don’t know. But I think we’re going to go Super Sprint (Newbury, July 22).”
Johnson Houghton also hit the bar with another big-priced runner, when Streets Of Gold was third to Age Of Kings in the seven-furlong Jersey Stakes.
The Havana Gold three-year-old was unbeaten in five races as a juvenile, including a valuable sales race at the Curragh and a lucrative two-year-old race at York.
“Streets Of Gold ran a cracker as well,” she added. “What a tough little monkey he is. He hasn’t really grown from two to three, and some say he hasn’t trained on. But no, he has improved.
“He his higher now than he was and I just placed him beautifully last year to win lots of money!” she laughed, tongue in cheek.
“He has improved, having gone up from a rating of 103 to 109.
“I think we’ll find a Group race for him – he’ll be winning Group races soon, I think.
“He’s in the Bunbury Cup (Newmarket, July 15) but no three-year-old has won it for God knows how long (1998), so that slightly puts me off. I might put him in the Lennox (Goodwood, July 26) and see.”
Bobsleigh, who was beaten three lengths when sixth to impressive River Tiber in the Coventry Stakes, could head to Goodwood for his next outing.
She added: “He ran an absolute cracker. He’s also in the Super Sprint. He might go there, but he could go in the Richmond (Goodwood, August 3) as he likes downhill tracks. It gives us a bit of time, but I’m just in two minds over that.”
The one disappointment was the performance of former Queen Anne hero Accidental Agent, who finished down the field in the Buckingham Palace.
“Accidental Agent didn’t fire, but the handicapper has only dropped him a pound (to a mark of 100) and I’ve just had a furious row with him,” said Johnson Houghton.
“He keeps running to 102, he said. But he hasn’t troubled the judge for God knows how many races. He’s nine years old. Are we going to wait until he’s 15 to drop him to a mark that he can run off? It’s ridiculous.
“He’ll probably have to run in the Bunbury Cup. There are not any races he can go in for horses rated 0-100.”