Aussie raider Artorius to have Newmarket run out ahead of July Cup

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Australian sprinters are flavour of the month after Nature Strip's Royal Ascot demolition and fellow antipodean Artorius heads to the July Cup at Newmarket as favourite.

Sam Freedman's sprinter finished a dead-heat third in the Platinum Jubilee at Royal Ascot and will head to the July Course on Friday for a piece of work under Jamie Spencer in preparation for the July Cup on Saturday, July 9.

Freedman said: "The horse has done really well since Ascot. He is nice and fit after that run, so he'll have one piece of work on Friday and that should see him pretty ready for the July Cup. "He hasn't been there (July Course), so Friday will be his first look. The course is an unknown, but I think the tougher the race the better it is for him. "It's undulating and he's a bit quirky, but once he's had a look at the track I think it should hold him in good stead." Artorius isn't the quickest out of the gates and a tendency to take his time getting into races has led to the partnership with Spencer, a jockey who is well versed in hold-up tactics and will be trusted to deliver the Aussie bullet at exactly the right time. The three-year-old Flying Artie colt was ultimately only beaten three-quarters of a length in the Group 1 won by Naval Crown at Royal Ascot and Freedman will be hoping to go two places better at HQ. He added: "He's always going to need that bit of luck, but when things go right and he gets the breaks at the right time he has what it takes to be right there at the finish. "It's a long way to come to take that sort of risk, but he showed at Ascot he is up to taking on those top sprinters and certainly justified the decision by all the owners to bring him over. "The job's not done yet, so hopefully he can go a couple of places better next week." "His coat has definitely improved and he should make natural improvement having not run since March before he ran at Ascot," said Freedman. "His work and everything since suggests he's a little bit more switched on. He certainly hasn't gone backwards anyway."

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