Create Belief is due to run tomorrow in the Desmond Stakes (Group 3) over 1 mile for 3-year-olds and up at Leopardstown, 6.30pm live on RacingTV.
Shane B Kelly has been booked to ride as regular jockey Ben Coen is suspended. Shane is Johnny Murtagh’s second jockey and was very keen for him to take the ride. Shane has already enjoyed plenty of success this season on some of Johnny’s best horses including Sonnyboyliston and Ottoman Emperor.
Create Belief is drawn in stall 9 of 9 runners.
Johnny has been very patient with the filly since Royal Ascot due to ground conditions being against her. It would have been very easy to have let her take her chance on quick ground, but he thinks so highly of her that he wants to look after her the best he possibly can.
The ground at Leopardstown is currently yielding with some rain forecast. Hopefully it doesn’t dry up too quickly tomorrow so she can take her chance.
We know that Create Belief relishes soft ground as we saw when winning at The Curragh in May and then again winning easily at Royal Ascot but ideally, Johnny needs to get a run into her before some hefty targets in the autumn. Johnny will walk the course before racing to make sure he is 100% happy with the ground but as things stand, she is expected to run.
Create Belief is the highest rated horse in the race on 110 and receives weight from all her rivals except Neptune Rock. She receives a sex allowance and also an age allowance for being a three year old against some older horses.
Tomorrow is a big step up in grade for her going from handicaps into a group race. She will need to raise her game, but Johnny believes she's improved plenty since Royal Ascot.
Real Appeal looks to be the main danger on paper for Jessica Harrington rated 109 having won a Group 3 at Leopardstown over 7 furlongs last time out but steps back up to a mile for the first time since last July.
Military Style for Aidan O’Brien is coming back from a 333-day absence, but you’d have thought will not be lacking fitness. He is an unexposed colt having only raced four times and is already a Group 3 winner.
Some of Ireland’s biggest trainers are in opposition including Ger Lyons, Jim Bolger Dermot Weld and Joseph O’Brien so to take on these names as well as some of the game’s biggest owners is a great thrill.
Johnny’s thoughts can be seen here:
We’re all very hopeful of a big run and if the rain does arrive, we’ll be disappointed if she didn’t win. She’s going to be a short price favourite so not much value to be had, however a win bet is recommended.
The main thing is she comes back safe and sound so we can all look forward to a fantastic autumn ahead.
We wish you all the very best of luck.