RACING: Charlton hopes for Leopardstown rain
11:54am Friday 6th September 2013 in Sport
BECKHAMPTON trainer Roger Charlton is praying the forecast rain at Leopardstown materialises after Al Kazeem set off on the journey to Ireland for Saturday's Red Mills Irish Champion Stakes.
The five-year-old has enjoyed an outstanding season so far, completing a Group One hat-trick with victories in the Tattersalls Gold Cup at the Curragh, the Prince of Wales's Stakes at Royal Ascot and the Coral-Eclipse at Sandown.
He suffered his first defeat of the campaign when third in a fast-ground Juddmonte International at York and was declared a "doubtful" starter in this weekend's Group One highlight earlier in the week, when similar conditions seemed likely.
However, the weather has since taken a turn for the worse and Leopardstown could be hit by as much as 20 millimetres of rain in the next 24 hours, but Charlton is taking nothing for granted.
"Al Kazeem left Beckhampton at 8am this morning (Friday) to start his long journey to Ireland in the hope that there will be some rain at Leopardstown before racing tomorrow evening," the trainer told his website rogercharlton.com.
"The weather forecast seems to change by the hour and there is a wide range of opinions as to how much they will get.
"The gun is loaded so fingers crossed yet again."
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