Group 1 Nunthorpe next for The Tin Man

The Tin Man has thrown down the gauntlet to Europe’s sprint division in the lead-up to Group 1 showdowns at York, Haydock and Ascot.

The first-crop son of Equiano (Fr) treated his rivals with contempt while cruising through the field in the G3 Hackwood Stakes (1200m) at Newbury on Saturday.  Settled at the back by Tom Queally, he cut through the pack on the bridle and only had to be nudged out to beat Divine.

“He has to be ridden with confidence,” Queally said.  “He’s a different gear in that form and won as cosy as I’ve ever won a sprint of that calibre.

“He’s very exciting and will be a force to be reckoned with.  I have huge aspirations for him.”

The Tin Man (4g Equiano – Persario by Bishop Of Cashel) won with more ease than the bare margin of a head suggests.  “Tom felt he almost got there too soon,” trainer James Fanshawe explained.  “This horse has got enormous talent with a great turn of foot.

“We came here instead of a start in the July Cup.  He’s had an interrupted preparation and we decided to wait for the big races at the back-end.”

A late-season mission mapped out by connections includes the G1 Nunthorpe Stakes at York (Aug 19) and/or G1 Haydock Sprint Cup (Sept 3) prior to the G1 British Champions Sprint at Ascot (Oct 15)

Bookmakers have promoted The Tin Man to the third-line of Nunthorpe markets at $8.  “I’ve still got Haydock in mind but York is tempting,” Fanshawe added.  “It’s a great race.  Let’s just see how he comes out of today.”

Last year’s Hackwood was won by Equiano colt Strath Burn and he also holds noms for the Nunthorpe and Haydock Sprint.  The Qatar Racing colt will be on trial for those events in the G2 King George Stakes at Goodwood on July 29.

Another Equiano colt with a Group 1 program ahead is Irish youngster Medicine Jack.  A last-start winner of the G2 Railway Stakes, he has entries back at the Curragh for the Phoenix Stakes on August 16 and National Stakes on September 11.

Equiano shuttles to Swettenham Stud for a $13,750 (inc gst) service fee.