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GAVIN CROMWELL: Dual-trainer and Brand Ambassador Gavin Cromwell picks out five of his horses for you to keep an eye out for when the Flat season gets underway.

We’ve got some nice horses to look forward to on the Flat this season and here are the five I’m particularly excited about. 

Princess Yaiza

She had a brilliant three-year-old season for us a couple of years ago culminating with that fantastic win at Longchamp on Arc weekend. After running at the Breeders’ Cup, she stayed in America but didn’t run for her new trainer having had a couple of minor setbacks.

We’ve been absolutely delighted with her since she’s come back to the yard and we’re hoping she’ll be able to pick up where she left off. She badly needed the run at Dundalk last time and has come on leaps and bounds since then which is very encouraging.

Plans are obviously a bit up in the air at the moment but we’ll probably be looking at the same race she won at Longchamp as her main goal for the season. It’s been upgraded to a Group One since she won it so it would be brilliant if we could have another shot at it this time around. If anything we think she’s a better mare now than she was a couple of seasons back and if we’re right, there’s plenty to look forward to.

Come September

She was due to run on the first day of the Flat season at Naas but had a little setback unfortunately. Being rated in the low 90s shows the ability she has and we’d like to think she’ll be able to pick up some black type at some point this season.

Having won her maiden, she ran well in decent company and her only real bad run was at Dundalk at the end of the campaign. You can put a line through that as it was probably one race too many and she’s one we’re excited to get out.

The small setback will keep her off the track for a bit, but hopefully towards the end of the season is where we’ll see the best of her.

Point Reyes

Like the first two, she’s owned by Lindsay Laroche and ran a nice race on her return for us at Dundalk. I think that was a pretty hot race with the winner looking a smart type, so it was a very good run and she should improve plenty for it.

She was an expensive purchase from the Breeze Ups last year, but for whatever reason didn’t quite perform as we hoped she would at first. She showed her ability when winning a nursery off a mark of 70, though, and we’re confident she’ll turn out to be much better than that. With natural progression we’re hoping she’ll push her way up to around the 90 mark and having underachieved a little bit so far, there’s definitely more to come from her.


She’s developed into a very consistent mare for us and has been placed in some very competitive handicaps. That’s the route we’ll follow with her again this season with the big Premier Handicap at Leopardstown, a race she was just touched off in last season, one of the races we’ve got in mind.

She’ll contest a number of similar contests and she’s certainly got the ability to win one.

Battle Of Benburb

He finished third in a barrier trial at Naas last year, the form of which has worked out well with the first and second winning their maidens since. He’s taken a bit of time to mature which is why we didn’t run him as a two-year-old, but he’s a very exciting horse for this year.

We think a fair amount of him and he’s a colt we’re hopeful will break his maiden tag at the first time of asking. He’s a lovely horse to look forward to.