First-season trainer David Loughnane hopes a big run from Nonno Giulio at Beverley on Wednesday can act as a launchpad for the biggest week of his fledgling career.
Based at David O'Meara's old yard in Nawton, North Yorkshire, Loughnane will arrive in East Yorkshire in good spirits after Nonno Giulio impressively won a one-mile Wetherby handicap on his last run on May 17.
The five-year-old son of Halling now takes aim at a double in Beverley's Weatherbys Hamilton Handicap (3.00) over eight and a half furlongs. Victory on the Westwood would also provide a timely lift for Loughnane, who next week has Royal Ascot aspirations with stablemate Earth Drummer.
Loughnane told http://www.beverley-racecourse.co.uk/: "Nonno Giulio won really well at Wetherby last time and the ground should again be perfect for him. There's no secret behind what we've done with him. It's just about training him the way he needs to be trained and keeping him nice and fresh and relaxed. He was further back than we planned at Wetherby and though he is drawn stall one, we'll ride the race as we see it. It's a good race, but we'd like to think he'll go well."
Nonno Giulio is one of 10 declared runners in a fine renewal of the Weatherbys Hamilton Handicap which features Ruth Carr's last-time-out winner Victoire De Lyphar. Simply Shining (Richard Fahey), Final (Mark Johnston), Dutch Artist (O'Meara) and Beverley favourites Jacbequick and Shadowtime add further strength in depth.
Earth Drummer is next Wednesday likely to represent Loughnane in the Royal Hunt Cup at Ascot.
The six-year-old son of Dylan Thomas was cut in price to around 16-1 for the big one-mile handicap after he finished an unlucky-in-running fifth in the seven-furlong Victoria Cup at Ascot on May 7.
Loughnane said: "Everything that went wrong could have gone wrong in the Victoria Cup, but he still ran a smashing race. Course form is the best form, so hopefully we can get him there and he can run his race. We'd be fairly confident he'll get into the race, so it will be a hell of an experience to have a Royal runner in my first season training."
Beverley's eight-race fixture on Wednesday is due to begin at 2pm, with the going currently good to firm and watering taking place to preserve conditions.