Feature Story

Can Ryan’s speedster gain sprinting stardom?

Can Ryan’s speedster gain sprinting stardom? Jul 10, 2024

The European sprinting division is crying out for a new superstar and Commonwealth Cup winner Inisherin will bid to fill that void in this Saturday’s G1 July Cup at Newmarket.


An impressive winner at Royal Ascot in the colours of Sheikh Mohammed Obaid Al Maktoum, Kevin Ryan’s progressive sprinter will bid to become the fifth three-year-old in the past eight renewals to lift the marquee sprint. Here Sam Turner dissects the chances of Saturday’s contenders.  


ART POWER – (Tim Easterby)

Has finished fourth on both starts in this event (2023 and 2021) having made the running until late on. Boasts just one top-level win to his name, achieved on soft ground at Ascot, and suspicion that the Berkshire venue or the Curragh are his preferred tracks.

Verdict: Could sneak on to the podium.  


KHAADEM – (Charles Hills)

Completed back-to-back victories on his favoured fast ground at Ascot in Group 1 company when last seen and has run creditably twice in this event in years gone by.

Verdict: Suspicion he may find this tougher than Ascot.


KINROSS – (Ralph Beckett)

Beaten just a length in last year’s renewal and won’t mind any of the rain which has fallen in the region this week. Made an encouraging return to action at Newcastle and looks a threat to all if allowed to take his chance.

Verdict: Could be on the scene if it continues to rain.


MILL STEAM – (Jane Chapple-Hyam)

Less exposed than most and posted one of his better career efforts when a close third to Khaadem at Royal Ascot. Balance of evidence suggests he needs to step up again to score at this level.

Verdict: Others preferred.


MITBAAHY – (Charles Hills)

Beaten five lengths at Ascot by Khaadem (6f) but reportedly found the ground too quick on that occasion. Trainer a wizard in this type of contest and, although he has plenty to find, he could easily outrun his odds even at this level.

Verdict: Lively outsider.


REGIONAL – (Edward Bethell)

Has developed into a wonderfully consistent sprinter with a solid record over five and six furlongs at the top level. Arguably posted a career best at Ascot when beaten a length by Asfoora at Royal Ascot but wouldn’t want too much rain.

Verdict: The best is yet to come.


SWINGALONG – (Karl Burke)

Talented trailblazer who fought off all comers bar Khaadem at Royal Ascot despite facing competition for the lead. That effort confirmed she can win at elite level and capable of springing a surprise granted a favourable draw.

Verdict: Looks best of the outsiders.


VADREAM – (Charlie Fellowes)

Would require a deluge to display her best form and the forecast suggests, even in Britain, that connections won’t get their wish.

Verdict: Lengthy wait for a win at this level set to continue.


INISHERIN – (Kevin Ryan)

Displayed loads of promise in the 2000 Guineas before connections made the shrewd move to drop him in trip and win the Sandy Lane (Haydock) and the Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot. His latest triumph promised plenty and yet to reach his ceiling as a sprinter.

Verdict: Upwardly mobile and tough to beat.


JASOUR – (Clive Cox)

Impressive winner of the G2 July Stakes over c&d last year at this meeting and arguably posted a career best at Ascot when chasing home Inisherin (beaten 2½l). Star remains in the ascendancy but will need to improve again to record first G1 success.

Verdict: Must improve again.


MILITARY – (A P O’Brien)

Flashes of ability in a seven-race career but held at a lower level this season in a variety of headgear and only beat one home at Royal Ascot.

Verdict: Outclassed.  



Follows in the hoofprints of previous stable winners as he drops in trip to revert to sprinting after tackling further this season. No show in the Jersey Stakes last time but faded late and this switch to 1200m could work the oracle. A little find with Vandeek on juvenile form.

Verdict: A dangerous rival to all.


VANDEEK – (Simon & Ed Crisford)

Star two-year-old sprinter who wound up last campaign with a stylish success in the G1 Middle Park at Newmarket. Entitled to need comeback in the Sandy Lane at Haydock and, although he has 4l to find with Inisherin, may narrow that deficit.

Verdict: Needs to prove he can match juvenile levels.



1 Inisherin

2 Regional

3 Swingalong