Bucanero Fuerte too strong for Lacken rivals

Commonwealth Cup hope makes all for Group Three glory at Naas.

Bucanero Fuerte saw off all comers to make a successful start to his campaign in the Goffs Lacken Stakes at Naas.

Adrian Murray’s Wootton Bassett colt proved himself at the very highest level as a juvenile last season, winning the Group Two Railway Stakes and the Group One Phoenix Stakes at the Curragh as well as finishing third in the Coventry at Royal Ascot.

He was well beaten by Henry Longfellow on his final start of 2023 in the National Stakes in September, but proved he retains plenty of ability with a determined front-running display on his comeback.

Dropping back to six furlongs at Group Three level, 2-1 shot Bucanero Fuerte was on the pace from the off in the hands of David Egan and with the stands’ rail to help, he stuck to his guns deep inside the last of six furlongs to repel the late thrust of 5-4 favourite Givemethebeatboys by a head.

Paddy Power left the winner’s odds for the Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot next month unchanged at 8-1, but Coral cut him to 6-1 from the same price.

Robson Aguiar, Murray’s assistant, said: “He’s a nice horse and is going to improve a lot because we were not hard on him and he will get fit from the race.

“He will go over six furlongs at Ascot. He has great speed and he stays well, so that is the plan for him now.”

Follow us on Twitter racing365dotcom and like our Facebook page.