Updated on 09/15/2011 12:32PM

Medicean in top form for Eclipse


Saturday's $485,000 Eclipse Stakes at Sandown Park, a 1 1/4-mile Group 1 race, features a pair of Royal Ascot winners against the third-place horses from both the English and French derbies.

Medicean, whose victories in the Lockinge Stakes and the Queen Anne Stakes make him the best older miler in Europe, may be good enough to defeat his younger rivals in the Eclipse. He will, however, be giving 11 pounds on the scale to St. James's Palace Stakes winner Black Minnaloushe, Epsom Derby third Tobougg, and French Derby third Grandera.

A son of Machiavellian out of a mare by Storm Bird, Medicean is bred to be a miler, and while he failed in his only attempt at the Eclipse distance last year, he has never been better and may be able to handle the extra distance for Michael Stoute.

Medicean gave five pounds to rivals when he won the Queen Anne on June 19. He is the selection over the Aidan O'Brien-trained Black Minnaloushe, a son of Storm Cat who is untested at 10 furlongs.

Godolphin sends out Tobougg in place of Fantastic Light, who will go next in the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes. Like Grandera, he is dropping down from 1 1/2 miles.