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Impressive Invincible Army cut to favourite for Diamond Jubilee

Family traits run deep for Invincible Army and James Tate.

Invincible Army had fallen just short of top class at two and three but like his Group 1-winning parents Invincible Spirit and Rajeem, he is getting better with age.

After powering his way to a first Group 2 victory, the Saeed Manana-owned four-year-old was promoted to favourite for the Diamond Jubilee by some firms, with his odds ranging between 4-1 and 8-1.

Invincible Army had shown flashes of his ability when gaining two Group 3 victories, but a new-found maturity is taking his form to the next level.

"He seems to be different this year, he's calm and just has the mentality for it," said Tate.

"We have to think of the Group 1s only and he appears to get the six furlongs well, so we've got Ascot, the Haydock Sprint Cup and the Champions Sprint and they'll be the three targets.

"I was a little concerned about the ground today but as long as it's safe he's okay. If the ground isn't too quick at Ascot, he should have a favourite's chance."

For Tate, who is the son of North Yorkshire trainer Tom and nephew of the great Michael Dickinson, it was the high point of a training career that started in 2011.

The 39-year-old, who came close to winning the French 2,000 Guineas last year with Hey Gaman, is based in Newmarket but this felt like a home win.

"I was born in Harrogate and spent most of my life in Tadcaster and it's great as that's our biggest win so far," he added.

Having partnered Invincible Army on his successful comeback in the Cammidge Trophy, PJ McDonald is now unbeaten in two starts on the colt.

"I'm very lucky to be getting on this horse at the right time as mentally he's in such a good place," said the jockey, who is set to renew his association with star filly Laurens in Saturday's Al Shaqab Lockinge Stakes.

"He's like a four-mile chaser and that's what sprinters need to be. He's switching off in the middle part of his race and then he's getting down to business. If we can keep this lad in this kind of order, we will have a lot of fun over the year."

Kevin Ryan had three runners in the race with Major Jumbo faring best in second, some two-and-a-quarter-lengths behind Invincible Army.

"Major Jumbo ran a lovely race," he said. "He's a real tough horse and he wouldn't know how to put in a bad run. More juice in the ground would have been a help to him and that's also true of Brando [in seventh]. I was delighted with him and with Hey Jonesy [fifth] as well."

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