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Old Bailey up in trip for G3 Procyon Stakes

Racenews

Five-year-old sprinter Old Baileyinfo-icon makes a rare appearance over seven furlongs in the G3 Procyon Stakes on dirt at Chukyo, Japan, on Sunday, 7 July.

The son of To Honor And Serve has raced almost exclusively over six furlongs on dirt for trainer Mitsumasa Nakauchida, with three Stakes wins at that distance last year including a comfortable success in the Muromachi Stakes at Kyoto in October.

On his only previous Pattern appearance, Old Bailey was denied a clear run when coming home 12th in the six-furlong G3 Capella Stakes on dirt at Nakayama in December.

He has made two appearances in races not run over his favoured trip, winning on debut over six and a half furlongs at Tokyo in November, 2016, and coming home fourth on turf in a seven-furlong allowance race at Hanshin in June, 2017.

Old Bailey, the mount of Ryoya Kozaki, goes into the Procyon Stakes on the back of two outings this year, most recently when finishing a never-nearer fifth in a Kyoto conditions race on dirt at the end of April.

He breaks from stall 11 in a field of 15 that is headed by G1 Dubai Golden Shaheen runner-up Matera Sky.

Harry Sweeney, President of Godolphin in Japan, said: “This will be judgment day for Old Bailey in many ways. From 16 career starts to date, he has won six times including three Japanese Stakes races.

“However, he has only ever raced in Group company on one previous occasion, but was found wanting then.

“Furthermore, all his wins and indeed all of his dirt races have been at distances shorter than the seven furlongs of Sunday’s G3 Procyon Stakes.

“He is training well, but may not trouble the judge this weekend.”