Look up a definition of Camelot in its Arthurian guise and at some stage the word idealised will appear. The equine Camelot may be a red-hot favourite for this Saturdayâs 2,000 Guineas but itâs hard not to suspect the same word could be employed for his Guineas claims too.
A relentlessly commercial enterprise like Coolmore is never likely to undersell its products. It is generally accepted that most every Ballydoyle inmate has âloads of paceâ and âtactical speedâ and only plague, pestilence and injury prevents it from winning a Group 1 â at a mile â and on fast ground.
Even then there is often a breeding shed to be found for it, anywhere from Montevideo to Madras.
Sure enough the claims being made for Camelotâs powers of acceleration make him a match for anything Lockheed has ever built. And there was plenty to admire about the way he shot past his Racing Post Trophy opposition last year.
If you believe the betting, and the whispers from Ballydoyle, the Guineas is already as good as won, despite Aidan OâBrienâs public reluctance to commit him to Newmarket.
But there is another revolving chant from the pedigree gurus at Cool-more and that is âyou canât beat blood.â And in pure bloodline terms, surely Camelot canât win the Guineas.
His dam operated best past a mile and her only other foal that has raced to date needed ten furlongs at Clonmel to win. And that was by Galileo.
Famously Camelot is by the late and much lamented Montjeu, often an influence for mental frailty but also genuine brilliance. And that brilliance remorselessly manifests itself best at a mile and a half.
The similarities with St Nicholas Abbey two years ago have been brought up constantly but are no less relevant for repetition. He was just as impressive a two year old, maybe even more so, was also by Montjeu, and had his brains blown by the Guineas.
What Camelot has going for him is the suspicion that this isnât as strong a Guineas. And maybe ground conditions wonât be as quick.
But even allowing for that, if he is true to his pedigree than he will have to be more than ideal to win a Guineas: heâll have to be freak. And trading at evens about freakishness makes no kind of betting sense at all.
Speaking of Montjeu and his influence, does Hurricane Fly give the impression of a horse thatâs just starting to think about the game?
The fact he ground out a Punchestown win when clearly not at his best might suggest otherwise but heâs had two slogging races in a row now and Willie Mullins was only articulating a widely held feeling when pondering if the less welcome part of Montjeu in Hurricane Fly is starting to show itself.
All concerned at Punchestown are probably still catching up on their sleep right now, but even so kudos all around for their round-the-clock work in keeping the show on the road last week. Itâs definitely an A1 for effort.
The weather really was the focus of everything and deflected from what were some worryingly disappointing turn-outs for some of the major events.
Five runners for the two mile novice hurdle â three of which were Willie Mullins trained â and half a dozen for the two mile Champion Chase, not to mention just four for the Champion Hurdle with only one non-Mullins starter, doesnât look great.
It certainly made a mockery of the equality of status with Cheltenham that Punchestown strives for. And thereâs no getting away from the fact that the four major championship winners at Cheltenham didnât travel.
A sure sign of the fine job pulled off by Punchestownâs staff in sticking to schedule was the appearance of Enda Kenny at the races. Thereâs nothing a politician likes more than to be associated with a success-story.
During his visit the Taoiseach played down comments by a Ladbrokes executive who has expressed doubt about the long-awaited new legislation for the taxation of off-shore and internet betting coming in this year.
Enda poured some scorn on the predictive abilities of Ladbrokes and in typical politico speak ruled nothing in or out.
Such a high-handed approach might have worked a lot better were it not for decades of evidence in this country that politicians of every creed and colour are bottom of the handicap when it comes to predictions.
And whatever else you might think of Ladbrokes, they are true Group 1 standard when it comes to reading the political tea-leaves.