Acapulco is literally head and shoulders above her rivals in the Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes at York today.
Described by trainer Wesley Ward as “monstrous”, the huge American filly also has the class to match her heavyweight physique. She should, then, convincingly step up to the top table to become the first juvenile to win the Nunthorpe since Kingsgate Native in 2007.
As a young filly, Acapulco is in receipt of nearly 2st from many of the Nunthorpe protagonists but racegoers who see her in the flesh at York could be mistaken for thinking it should be the other way around, such is her size and scope.
The daughter of Scat Daddy is visually mature beyond her tender years, and illustrated the point on only her second racecourse outing at Royal Ascot.
Coolmore’s representative was sent off the 5-2 favourite for the Queen Mary at Royal Ascot, and those who had lumped on could not have wished for a smoother passage. Acapulco produced arguably the most domineering performance of the Royal meeting with a clinical dismantlement of a strong field.
The form – and this is not often the case with the Queen Mary – also looks watertight as runner-up Easton Angel looks particularly smart. As does Besharah, who has since claimed a Group Three by three lengths and more.
Trained with characteristic poise by the likeable Ward, Acapulco has been readied for this assignment ever since that day in Berkshire.
Ominously, too, for those in competition, the chances this athletic thoroughbred can make even further progress from the Queen Mary appear high. How she handles cut in the ground is anyone’s guess, but the forecast for the rest of the week looks fairly decent, so York is highly unlikely to turn into a rare old slog. Even if that is the case, Acapulco hardly looks a horse to shirk any kind of gun-slinging skirmish.
Tac De Boistron should not be forgotten in the Weatherbys Hamilton Lonsdale Cup. Lots of attention will be lavished upon the Goodwood Cup form from last month, but it might be best to shift one’s focus towards Marco Botti’s stayer. It all went spectacularly wrong for Tac De Boistron at Royal Ascot – he was all but pulled up – but his trainer might still regret running him in the Gold Cup. The ground was, after all, way too fast for the eight-year-old grey, who is a top-notch operator when the mud is flying. His form in the Yorkshire Cup last season, though, tends to suggest he is at home on good ground as he was only beaten a neck by Gospel Choir, who was getting weight. It was a similar story at Chester on his seasonal debut, too, as he could not claw back a length-and-a-quarter deficit from Clever Cookie, who was in receipt of 7lb. Back on level terms with most of these, the dual Group One winner can make it count.