Shades of sire Gleneagles as Royal Lytham battles to narrow victory

Group-race victories became the norm for Coolmore many years ago but Royal Lytham's Tattersalls July Stakes success was one that provided the breeding operation with great pleasure as freshman sire Gleneagles recorded a first Pattern triumph.

Gleneagles, a four-time top-level winner during his racing career, sired his first Royal Ascot winner when Southern Hills landed the Windsor Castle Stakes and Royal Lytham continued his impressive start with a short-head win over Platinum Star in a race won by Saturday's Darley July Cup favourite Advertise last year.

A debut winner at Navan prior to finishing an unlucky seventh in the Coventry Stakes, Royal Lytham showcased the battling qualities of his sire to just hold on in a thrilling three-way finish also involving odds-on favourite Visinari.

Ladbrokes introduced Royal Lytham into next year's Qipco 2,000 Guineas market at 33-1, while the Goffs Vincent O'Brien National Stakes over 7f could be a more immediate target at the Curragh on September 15.

Kevin Buckley, Coolmore's UK representative, said: "Royal Lytham was a little unlucky in the Coventry and we're delighted with him today, particularly for us at Coolmore, as this is Gleneagles's first crop of two-year-olds and he has made a very promising start.

"Gleneagles is exactly his father Galileo's son on the physical front and his progeny have fantastic minds in possessing the willingness to constantly keep giving. 

"Royal Lytham has an exciting future and a step up in trip may well suit in time. The National Stakes and Phoenix Stakes are likely to come under consideration for his next start but we'll see how he comes out of this."

It was a second victory in the race for Aidan O’Brien 14 years on from Ivan Denisovich's win under Kieren Fallon, while rider Wayne Lordan made his short visit to Newmarket a sweet one. 

Royal Lytham, sent off at 11-1, joined an illustrious honour roll that includes Noverre, Arcano and Shalaa and was Lordan's sole mount on the card, prior to the jockey flying back to Ireland for three rides at Leopardstown in the evening.

Lordan said: "Royal Lytham has a nice way about him. He tends to race lazily but keeps a bit back for the finish and is tough. 

"He ran a nice race at Ascot, has stepped up here and he'd definitely stay another furlong. It's great to get the opportunity to ride for Aidan in these big races."

Impressive course-and-distance novice stakes scorer Visinari hit the front inside the final two furlongs but narrowly gave way to speedier rivals late on to leave trainer Mark Johnston eyeing a step up in trip next time.

Johnston said: "It looked to me that this trip was just a bit sharp for Visinari and as a result Frankie [Dettori] had to get after him early as he wasn't quite quick enough, which I did fear as he's quite a big horse. We'll try him over seven furlongs next time."