Forgive Redkirk Warrior his uncharacteristically tame run at Royal Ascot and his July Cup 2018 odds start to look pretty enticing, especially with regular rider Regan Bayliss back in the saddle for the Newmarket Group 1.

The British-bred, Australian trained sprinter is currently sixth in the July Cup betting at 9/1, which may seem short enough after finishing a modest tenth in the Diamond Jubilee Stakes behind fellow antipodean interloper Merchant Navy.

It was an underwhelming showing that was all the more galling as Redkirk Warrior had beaten his Royal Meeting conqueror in the Group 1 Newmarket Handicap at Flemington three months prior, despite conceding 12lbs in weight to that rival.


Form of that level puts him right in the mix at for the July Cup, especially after getting a boost at Ascot.

The son of Notnowcato’s co-trainer Tom Daberning fingered the after effects of long-haul travel on his charge rather than a poor ride from Frankie Dettori, who did the steering at the Berkshire track, as the most likely cause of that insipid run.

However, the booking of Bayliss, Redkirk Warrior’s partner in his three Group 1 wins to date, for their tilt at landing the July Cup odds, must be seen as a positive.

The 21-year-old Queenslander posted a glowing bulletin after riding his big race mount over the Newmarket gallops, telling Racing UK:

He’s in tip-top order and the gallop went very well. He stretched out nicely and I could not be happier with him.

Having had more time to get over his flight to England and been reunited with his regular partner, there is every reason to be hopeful Redkirk Warrior can outrun his July Cup odds.

If he had reproduced his Flemington form at Ascot and beaten Merchant Navy, he would likely be favourite for the HQ burn up and taking the chance that effort was a jet-lagged blip could see punters rewarded handsomely for their perseverance.

July Cup odds

At the time of writing the latest July Cup odds are as follows:

Blue Point 10/3, US Navy Flag 5/1, Eqtidaar 11/2, Dreamfield 8/1, Sands Of Mali 8/1, Redkirk Warrior 9/1, Limato 9/1, Brando 14/1, Sioux Nation 16/1 and 20/1 bar.