Friday, 30 September 2016

Saturday's Selection

We were out of luck again earlier in the week with My Charlie Brown. He pulled way too hard in the early stages and the pedestrian pace didn't play to his strengths. He could only manage a 4th placed finish, but given a more truly run race he is capable of much better and he is not one to lose faith in just yet.

Tomorrow is a cracking day of action, and my fancy goes in the big 150k sales race at Newmarket at 4.35. The one I like is right down the bottom off just 8st 2lbs, and Vote is a filly that could be capable of outrunning her odds of 25/1 for James Eustace and jockey Danny Brock.

This daughter of Aqlaam was sent off at 33/1 on her debut at Sandown (5f gd) for James Eustace back in June. She belied those odds ran a race chock full of promise. She looked pretty green early on, but she travelled really well into the race up the inside and just as Ryan Tate was about to give her the office she was snatched up and badly hampered. He switched her and she finished seemingly full of running in 4th, 4.5L behind the victor Somebody To Love.

The winner flew home down the outside, and that filly is now rated 91 after going on to be beaten just over 4L in a Group 2. The 3rd home went on to win a maiden next time out and is now rated 85. The form has a strong look to it, and I think Vote would have been an awful lot closer to the principals only for that interference.

She was put away for a couple of months after that, and reappeared at Leicester in another 5f maiden. Vote was sent off at just 3/1 for this race, but she looked a bit green in finishing 3rd. She took a while to hit top gear, but she stayed on nicely and her style of running suggests a step up to 6f will really suit her. Her dam has plenty of stamina in her pedigree too, so everything points towards the trip bringing about improvement.

James Eustace has decided to book man of the moment Danny Brock for the ride, and he will be brimful of confidence after his breakthrough win last weekend. The weights in this race are determined by the price of the horse, so Vote gets in off a feather weight thanks to her small price tag.

Obviously in a race like this luck will play a major part, and stakes should be kept to a minimum. However, I can't resist having a small each way bet on Vote at 25/1. Bet365 are the only bookie offering 4 places for this contest, so I would advise you to get on with them.


Thursday, 29 September 2016

Charlie Can Bounce Back At Newcastle

Horseracing can be a cruel mistress sometimes and, when things go as badly wrong as they did for Wednesday's selection, all you can do is laugh. I though he was overpriced at 16s, but even with two of the market leaders withdrawn he was sent off at 50s after drifting all day.

After watching the preceding sprint at Nottingham I knew our goose was cooked, as all the action unfolded on the far side. Corridor Kid was drawn in 11 and, when his jockey chose to stick to the near side, it was game over. It was a poor run in any case, and he could be one to keep an eye out for at Southwell this winter, as that is a track that Shaw usually targets.

There will be no uncertainty about ground or draw for Wednesday's selection, and Our Charlie Brown looks overpriced on his all weather debut. He never landed a blow last time out at Doncaster, but the good to soft ground and class 2 company can be seen as valid excuses. I think he is much better judged on his previous effort when winning as he liked at Musselburgh (7f gd/fm) in a class 6 handicap off 62, and there is every chance he will appreciate the surface at Newcastle.

His half brother Included broke his maiden on the 22nd of this month at Kempton, and Our Charlie Brown's sire American Post has a 41% strike rate (7/17) on synthetic surfaces. His dam won her only start, also on the all weather at Kempton, so the omens are good for him handling conditions. With 7 runners there will only be 2 places paid each way, so the advice is a small win bet at his current odds of 12/1 with Paddy Power.


Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Kid Could Outrun Odds For Shaw At Nottingham

It was a poor final day of the Cambridgeshire meeting at Newmarket for the blog, and my two selections for the big one never landed a blow. Arcada was the only one that made the frame, dead heating for 3rd and rewarding each way support at 12/1. She will stay further in time. Perhaps the best run of all the selections, even though she didn't place, was Crimson Rosette in the opener. Charlie Fellowes' filly ran a race chock full of promise, and she looks like she definitely has enough natural ability to win a maiden.

Wednesday's selection goes at Nottingham, and Corridor Kid could be ready to take a big step forward on his recent form on his handicap debut for Derek Shaw. This 3yo son of Kodiac has had six goes in maidens, and he showed plenty of ability on a couple of occasions. He ran a nice race here on his debut to be 5th (5f gd), beaten just 4.5L, and he was the same distance behind the winner next time at Haydock (5f gd/sft).

He reappeared in a 5f (gd) maiden at Thirsk back in April, and he showed that he had wintered well with a cracking run in 2nd, beaten just a quarter length (25/1). The 3rd, 5th and 7th home from that race have all won races since, and the winner has since moved to Germany to the Wohler yard. He was put away after that effort and reappeared at Beverley in another maiden, where the undulations didn't seem to suit him. His sp of 11/4 would suggest that connections expected better that day.

He was even shorter last time out at Newcastle (15/8fav) on the all weather, and he again ran poorly. However, there is every chance that the all weather surface didn't suit and he is worth giving another chance to back on turf. He is by Kodiac, whose progeny are best on turf (48% as compared to 35% on all weather), and his dam won a handicap on good ground  (she is related to no less than 4 turf winners).

The first time visor used at Newcastle is retained, and with the stalls in the centre at Nottingham tomorrow his draw in 11 should not be a problem. Martin Lane is a good booking, and he is 6/48 for Shaw this season, placing 8 times. Nottingham is a relatively flat course, so that will suit him more than the testing and undulating 5f at Beverley, and on the form of that his seasonal reappearance he should be capable of reaching the frame off his mark of 75. His last couple of efforts mean stakes should be kept to a minimum, but at pretty tasty odds Corridor Kid looks worthy of a small each way bet tomorrow.


Saturday, 24 September 2016

Newmarket Cambridgeshire Meeting-Day 3

It was a tough day for the blog on Friday, and Squire's effort was particularly disappointing. I really fancied him to run big, but he never got involved and was well beaten off in the end. Manaboo also ran a stinker, while Quloob never landed a blow either. I thought Big Sigh actually ran alright, and he could be worth backing next time out. He was as green as grass, and he did tire in the final furlong, but there is definitely some ability there.

Lady Of Camelot ran an absolute cracker to be second to the favourite, and she travelled so well into the race I thought she might reel in the eventual winner. Star Storm came back to form, and he ran a fine race to finish 3rd. Unfortunately with only 6 runners we didn't get paid e/w but at least we got a run for our money. Today is Cambridgeshire Day, and to find out my fancies for what is a superb day of racing just read below...


There isn't much form to go on in this 7f  maiden for the girls, and of those that have seen the track the John Gosden trained Elias Ruby has probably achieved most. However, she will surely be vulnerable to anything half decent and the one I am taking a chance on at a huge price is the Charlie Fellowes trained Crimson Rosette.

This daughter of Teofilo is out of a Lemon Drop Kid 3yo maiden winner (rated 90) who herself is a full sister to Group 3 winner Valiant Girl and dual Group 2 winner Bronze Cannon (who also won a 2yo maiden over 8f). Another couple of her half siblings have earned black type too, and it is a really talented family. Teofilo has a 31% strike rate with his 2yo runners, and a 39% strike rate from 7-9f.

The owner of this horse is Anthony Oppenheimer, also the owner of Derby hero Golden Horn among others, and this is the fourth 2yo he has had with Newmarket trainer Charlie Fellowes. Of the previous three, there was one winner and that came here last season over 6f. Fellowes generally does very well with his 2yos, and he operates at a more than respectable 21% strike rate (10/48). Stakes should be kept to a minimum, but this filly looks worth a couple of quid each way at her current odds of 33/1.



Arcada is the selection in the Group 2 Royal Lodge for the O'Brien brothers. This 2yo son of Rip Van Winkle has been campaigned solely on ground with an ease, and I think we could see a different horse today on the forecast good to firm ground. The only time he has had good in the description (gd/yld at the Curragh) he won, and the second home that day has since gone on to score twice, including a Listed race by 2l last time out.

He is extremely well bred, and his dam ran the best race of her career here in the Cambrigeshire when she was 4th, beaten 1.5L off a mark of 92 on good to firm back in 2009. Both her wins came on quick ground, and she is related to a host of horses that preferred quick conditions. I think Arcada will relish the surface at Newmarket tomorrow, and he is capable of going close at odds of 9/1.



There may be only 6 runners in the Group 1 Cheveley Park this year, but it is still a cracking little contest. Queen Kindly is flying the flag for Frankel and Fahey, while Roly Poly will be looking to make her presence felt for Ballydoyle. However, Lady Aurelia brings Group 1 winning form to the table, she is unbeaten in her three race career and this daughter of Scat Daddy will be hard to beat. No bet for me here, but I will be hoping to witness a scintillating display from the Wesley Ward trained filly.


For all intents and purposes this year's Middle Park looks a match between Blue Point and Mehmas and, on the evidence of their clash at Goodwood, the Appleby horse should have the upper hand. However, there are plenty of other interesting contenders in the field, and one of the least exposed is the Saeed Bin Suroor trained Silver Line. Best Solution may well have won for us at a big price earlier this week with a clearer passage, so hopefully Silver Line can make amends for us here.

Bin Suroor has his string in fine fettle now after a bug hit his yard during the summer. This son of Dark Angel may not boast the reputation of some of his shorter priced rivals, but he has some more than decent form in the book. He hasn't been seen since July, so he is going to be fresher than all of his rivals, and he went close in a couple of Group 2s after his facile maiden win.

He was beaten less than a length at Ascot on soft, and then he ran a massive race behind Mehmas on the July course in the Group 2 Arqana stakes. He was 1.5l behind that rival in 4th place, and if he has come on during his break he could easily close the gap to that rival. Danny Tudhope is a good jockey booking, and at more than 5 times the odds of Mehmas I reckon Silver Line could sneak a place at odds of 28/1.



Those of you who have been reading the blog from the start might remember me tipping up Examiner at odds of 50/1 for this race last year on good ground, and he duly ran a huge race to finish 3rd, beaten 1L off 88. I have had him in mind for this year's renewal ever since, and he comes here on the back of a confidence boosting win at Epsom 113 days ago off 92.

The break is not a worry as he goes well fresh, and his mark new mark of 96 should be well within reach. The ground is a slight worry, but once there is no jar he should be fine and his shrewd handler Stuart Williams has reported that his preparation has gone swimmingly. Oisin Murphy is a great booking, and he knows what it takes to win these big field handicaps. His draw in 18 gives him options, and at odds of 20/1 he looks worthy of a few quid each way.

At even bigger odds (for small stakes) I think Bastille Day is worth a second look. David Elsworth has his string ticking over nicely and his last 8 runners have returned form figures of 31163322. This 4yo son of Champs Elysees was in great form earlier in the season, winning 3 in a row, with the final win coming off 85 at Epsom (8.5f gd). He subsequently ran in a class 3 handicap here over 8f off his revised mark of 89, and he ran a creditable race to finish 5th, staying on really well in the closing stages.

He was ridden more prominently next time at Sandown (8f gd/fm) and he faded into 6th. He was given a little mid season break after that run, and returned to action at Kempton, where he again stayed on really well over 8f and he would have finished closer with a clearer run. That should put him spot on for this and, if his promising jockey's 7lb claim is considered, he is effectively off a mark of 82, 3lb below the mark he won off at Epsom. He has form figures of 425 from his three runs at Newmarket, the step up to 9f looks sure to suit, and he could easily outrun his odds of 66/1.



 I have no strong fancies for the remaining two races at Newmarket, but I am going to have a flutter on Dutch Masterpiece at Haydock. This previous course and distance winner has been slowly working his way back to form, and he was only beaten 4l in 6th here off 98 a couple of weeks ago. He loved a bit of cut in his younger days, but his best recent form has come on good ground, and conditions should be ideal for him today. He is 3lb below his last winning handicap mark, Hector Crouch takes off another 5lb, and at odds of 18/1 he is well worth backing each way.


Friday, 23 September 2016

Newmarket Cambridgeshire Meeting-Day 2

What was a good day for the blog on Day 1 could have been a whole lot better if Best Solution and William Buick could have found a clear passage in the Sommerville Stakes. He was staying on with real purpose, and only for the interference I think he would have definitely placed at the very least. Eminent got us off to a flier in the opener, and it was an authoritative display from the strapping son of Frankel. Meade is as shrewd as they come, and he beat some horses that had shown a decent level of form already.

Justice Belle was the highlight, and she just held off the late surge from the luckless Seamour to prevail by a nose under an inspired ride from Frankie. After all the non-runners she was as short as 8/1 in the lead up to the race, but luckily for us she drifted out and returned at double that price. Directorship also drifted, and he ran a stinker. Balgair was much too free in the early stages of his race, and he faded out of contention late on. Tomorrow is another cracking card, and to find out my fancies just read below....


The ground has quickened up at Newmarket, and it will be good to firm for the opener at 13.50. This 17 runner 8f Listed fillies heat looks an extremely tricky puzzle to solve, and a case can be made for plenty of them. Godolphin run three here, and the Saeed Bin Suroor trained Promising Run looks the most obvious one. However, at a much bigger price I think Manaboo could run well for Charlie Appleby, with William Buick a significant booking.

This 3yo daughter of Hard Spun won her debut over today's trip, after finishing 5th over 7f first time out, at Goodwood, proving too good for Wilamina by 1.5L, and that filly re-opposes today. She ran really well over course and distance upped to Listed class next time when she was 3rd behind Lumiere. She ran no sort of race on her last start at Haydock, but that run was too bad to be true. She is bred to be a black type filly, her dam being a half sister to Listed and G3 winner Toscanini. I think she could bounce back from her last run after being freshened up, and Buick must think so too as he keeps the faith. At odds of 16/1 she is the each way suggestion in a wide open race.



Another Listed fillies race here, this time over 12f. John Gosden has the hot favourite in Journey, and she will be looking to repeat her 8L romp here last year. She comes here on the back of a Group 3 win at Haydock and on the balance of form she will be tough to beat. 6/4 is too short for me though, and at double figure odds I think her stablemate Lady Of Camelot could give her something to think about.

This 4yo daughter of Montjeu has been very lightly raced, and she returned from a 2 year hiatus with an excellent maiden win from Ajman Princess, who went on to go close in a G2. Lady Of Camelot was stepped up to G2 company next time and ran a cracker in 5th behind Endless time (12f) on grund that was likely plenty soft for her. She can be excused her run in a listed heat last time, and if she can get back to the form of her maiden win she would have every chance of hitting the frame. The fav will be hard to beat, but if she is not at her best Lady Of Camelot could be the one to capitalise.



 The fav looks tough to oppose here and I have no strong fancy for this Group 2 contest.


Another small field and nothing appeals as being particularly overpriced. No bet.


Form is pretty thin on the ground for this 7f maiden, and those that have seen the racetrack don't set too exacting a standard. The Hannon horse will likely be sent off fav after a debut 3rd on soft, but at a huge price I like the look of Big Sigh's pedigree. This son of classic sire Raven's Pass is a February colt, and it is interesting that Chris Wall has waited until now to unleash him.

His dam is exceedingly well related, and her half siblings have won a host of Group contests between them. There are a number of juvenile winners in there too, so there is every chance that this fella could be a decent 2yo. Wall is not renowned for first time out 2yo winners, but when he does get them they usually win at rewarding odds. The booking of Ted Durcan is a positive (6/53 on 2yos for Wall past 5 seasons) and Wall has his string in decent nick too. 7f should be an ideal trip to start with, and at odds of 28/1 he is a speculative each way selection.



Quloob is a token selection here, strictly on pedigree. New Approach is a favourite sire of mine (along with Teofilo) and this colt is very well related on the dam line. His mum was of little account, finishing well beaten her only start, but she is a half sister to Mafki and he is a sire that has made a splash in recent years.

His grand-dam is a half sister to none other than champion 2yo Alhaarth, so it is plain to see that this colt has the potential to be a more than decent 2yo. 7f should be the perfect trip at this stage of his career, though he should get further in time. Hanagan is on board, the quick ground should be fine and at odds of 8/1 a minimal win bet is the order of the day.



Only six runners here and nothing really appeals from an each way perspective. Star Storm could improve for the drop in class, and he didn't find his best form until the Autumn last season. If he returns to the form of his Ascot Group 3 win he would be in with a good shout, but he needs to improve massively on what he has shown this season. Stakes should be kept to an absolute minimum, but at odds of 18/1 Star Storm is a very tentative selection.



Trying to find the winner of this 21 runner 9f Cambridgeshire consolation is a tough task, and there are a host of horses that can have a valid case made for them. I mentioned earlier that Teofilo was one of my go to sires, and one of his offspring appeals from an each way perspective in this 21 runner battle charge. Squire, a dual winner over 8.5f at Windsor (gd)  and 10f here (gd/fm), is a hard horse to win with, but he is likely to get the strong pace he likes in this race, and he could run well off a mark of 75 in a first time tongue tie.

This 5yo was the runner up in this contest last year off 78, and his form figures at Newmarket (bar his debut 8th) read 122. He is suited by quick ground and a strong pace over 9f, and he is guaranteed to get both tomorrow. Rob Havlin is back on board, he is 3lb lower for a 1.5L 2nd last year, and Havlin was the pilot for both Squire's previous wins. Attwater went close at Chelmsford earlier with Monumental Man, and hopefully Squire can make amends at odds of 16/1 at Newmarket.


Thursday, 22 September 2016

Newmarket Cambridgeshire Meeting-Day 1

It was a bitterly disappointing effort from Nobility earlier, and my reading of the race was way off. He wasn't dropped in, instead racing prominently and when push came to shove he didn't want to know. He still looks slightly green, and all hopes lie on him wintering well and improving from 2 to 3. Tomorrow is the start of the Cambridgeshire meeting at Newmarket, and there are some interesting races scheduled, including the Group 3 Sommerville Stakes. Below are my thoughts on what should be a cracking day of racing.


Martyn Meade is a trainer I have a lot of respect for, and he is well able to ready a 2yo first time out. He usually holds his best types back until the tail end of the season, and he has a fascinating son of Frankel in Eminent to go to war with in this race. The former Henry Cecil star has had a storming start to his career at stud, and he is operating at a 59% strike rate (10/17).

This colt is out of an exceedingly well related mare, who herself showed excellent form at pattern level. He was snapped up at the sales for a cool 150,00gns, and he makes his debut at a track that has been lucky for Meade with his 2yos. He is 5/11 at Newmarket with his juvenile runners, and Eminent has already been backed to make it 6/12. The double figure odds available on Wednesday evening have disappeared, but even at 7/1 he is still worth a small win bet in what looks a decent maiden.



This looks an extremely competitive little nursery, and the one I like is one of the least exposed runners in the field. Balgair ran out an impressive winner at 20/1 on his debut, and he had a couple of subsequent winners in behind so the form is not half bad. That win came over 7f at Sandown, and he certainly wasn't stopping at the finish. He ran pretty freely that day, so his trainer Jonny Portman can be excused for dropping him in trip to 6.5f next time out at Donaster in a hot class 2 contest.

He was out of his depth in that race, and he was outpaced 3f out and, once his chance had gone, Fran Berry was pretty easy on him. He steps back up to 8f here on his handicap debut off a mark of 80, and that looks sure to suit on the evidence of his debut win. His sire Foxwedge has a strike rate of 31% with his runners from 7f-9f, and his half brother is a triple 10f winner. Champion elect Jim Crowley has been booked, and hopefully he can ride his first winner from 24 attempts for Portman. At odds of 18/1 he definitely looks worthy of a small interest each way.



This is another interesting race for the fillies, and Hugo Palmer's Unforgettable Filly could be aptly named if her 7L maiden win at Lingfield (7.5f gd) last time out is to be believed. The form of her debut 2nd has also worked out really well, with the 3rd home winning by 10L next time up, and the 4th also winning too. However, I am not in the business of tipping up even money shots, and at a bigger price I think Highland Pass is worth a second look for Andrew Balding.

His 2yos have a habit of hitting form once August and September come, and this year is proving no different. He was 6/18 with his juveniles in August, and he is 4/21 already this month. Another thing that Balding's 2yos often do is improve massively for their debut efforts, and there is no doubt that Highland Pass has to do just that. However, she showed signs of ability on her first run at Kempton, and she is bred to be good enough for this sort of contest. Her half brother Elm Park won the Racing Post Trophy, and if this filly is anywhere near as talented as him she could make the frame at a nice price.



This is the main event of the day at Newmarket, and it is a cracking Group 3 contest. Hugo Palmer again supplies the jolly, and plenty will fancy Escobar to remain unbeaten and complete the hat trick. However, he is short at just 11/10 and, at a much bigger price, I like the look of Best Solution for Saeed Bin Suroor and Godolphin. Bin Suroor is hitting form after a bug hit his yard this summer, and he is sure to have lots of ammunition for the closing stages of the season. Bin Suroor has traditionally been prolific in the Autumn, and he had a strike rate of 39% last September (29% the year before).

Best Solution looked like a proper battler when winning his maiden on his second start at Goodwood (6f good), getting the better of Rich And Famous after a sustained duel in the last couple of furlongs. He won going away at the finish, and he gave the impression that 7f would be no problem at all. He again shaped as though 7f would be ideal last time out in a Listed contest in Turkey, when he was slowly away and staying on stoutly at the finish over 6f. There is plenty of stamina on the dam side of his pedigree and at odds of 16/1 he is the each way suggestion in what should be an exciting race.



Justice Belle is the each way selection here, for Ed Walker and Frankie Dettoi. This daughter of Montjeu takes on some useful types in this Listed contest, but she made a big impression on me with the manner of her handicap romp at Kempton last July (11f). While it may have been only a handicap off a mark of 78, it was a visually stunning win and it convinced me she was a black type filly.

She has had some issues this year, and she only made her seasonal reappearance in a class 2 14f soft ground handicap at Haydock a couple of weeks ago. She ran a cracker to finish 7th, beaten just over 7L. She wasn't given an overly hard time but she stayed on really well in the final furlong, and she gave the distinct impression that 2m would suit her well. She is by Montjeu and out of an exceedingly well related mare, so she is well worth a shot at this level. At odds of 14/1 she is the each way suggestion in a wide open looking race.



Zamperini did the blog a favour on his last start, but he didn't have a lot to spare and I'm not sure if he can cope with a 5lb rise. In saying that though, he needed every inch of the 10f to get up, so he should benefit from the step up in trip. He is a tentative each way selection with Ryan Moore booked. 



Patrick Chamings is far from a household name, but he is as shrewd as they come and he isn't afraid to have a big priced winner. On the face of it, Directorship looks to have it all to do in this 8f class 3 contest. He is a 10yo now after all, and he is up against some promising types with youth on their side. However, I don't think Chamings would be persisting with this son of Diktat unless he thought there was one last touch in him, and hopefully today is the day.

He ran a cracker behind Sir Roderic three runs back at Sandown (8f gd) off a mark of 90. He was ridden forward that day too, so to be beaten less than 2L was a cracking effort. Nothing went right back at the same venue on his penultimate run. He stumbled at the start and lost lots of ground, but he actually stayed on quite nicely in the closing stages to be beaten just over 4L off 89.

A line can be put through his last run in a class 3 conditions race at Ascot (8f gd/fm) as he was coming back from a break and it was likely a blowout to put him right for this contest. He won a class 2 contest here off 92 last July, and he gets in off 87 today. Fergus Sweeney was on board for his last run, and it has to be seen as a positive that he has been booked again today. Hopefully Directorship can show that age is nothing but a number and reward each way support at odds of 25/1.


Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Nobility A Potential Improver At Redcar

Magia Del Corso ran no sort of race at Gowran, heavily eased in the final stages. She was backed from 16s into 8s just before the off, but yet again the 'gamble' went astray. The way she was eased suggested something wasn't right with her, and after that run is is hard to keep the faith. She has definitely shown enough in the past to suggest she can win a handicap, but until she shows a bit more spark she is best left alone.

Tomorrow at Redcar I like the look of a Tim Easterby handicap debutant, and Nobility could take a step forward from what he has shown in maidens so far. He goes in the 6f nursery at 14.10, and he gets in off a mark of just 56. Easterby runs two in the race, with Coco La Belle the mount of David Allan. Rachel Richardson takes a handy 3lb off Nobility and, though he is twice the price of his stablemate, I think he could outrun his massive odds.

Form figures of 8879 don't exactly inspire confidence, and his debut run was pretty forgettable over 5f on good to soft at Ripon. It was marginally better at Thirsk next time, his only run over today's trip of 6f (gd). He was still beaten over 8L though, and it was a similar margin of defeat when he was upped to 7f at Wolverhampton. He was kept to maiden company last time, and he showed up well for a long way over 5f here (gd). However, the ground might have been a touch soft for him and he weakened in the last 100yds.

He travelled well for a long way in that race, and an extra furlong might well suit him. The race developed on the near side too, and he was stuck out on the far side. He has a perfect draw in stall 10, as middle to high numbers are strongly favoured on the straight track at Redcar. I think different tactics could be employed tomorrow, and Richardson could try to hold him up off what is hopefully a strong pace. It will be his first try on really quick ground and, being by Alfred Nobel, that is another cause for optimism. Hopefully he travels well, the race falls apart and he comes late to hit the frame. At odds of 20/1 he is the each way selection in a trappy looking nursery.


Saturday, 17 September 2016

McCourt Can Continue Good Form At Gowran

What was a decent day for us at Ayr could have been even better if Sean Levey had ridden My Name Is Rio out all the way to the line. I am not one for being too critical of jockeys, as I have never sat on a horse in my life and I can only imagine how difficult it must be trying to control a beast moving at near 40mph in a field of 20+. However, It does my head in when jockeys don't ride all the way to the line, especially when the horse finishes out of the places by just over head.

My Name Is Rio probably even led briefly inside the final furlong, and he ran an absolute cracker. Another big eye-catcher was Flying Pursuit, and he wasn't beaten all that far despite giving away a lot of ground at the start. The Gold Cup was won by Brando, but at least G-Force rewarded each way support for us. Adrian Keatley will be delighted with his run, and there are surely more big days ahead with the former Sprint Cup winner. Tomorrow there are a couple of jumps meetings in the UK, but I am staying closer to home with a selection from Gowran Park.

Tom McCourt has his string in super nick at the moment, and he runs two in the 3.50 at Gowran, a 1m handicap. Eye Glass is the shorter of the two at 16s, but I prefer the chances of Magia Del Corso, a 5yo daughter of Holy Roman Emperor who has troubled the judge twice in her 8 race career. This mare only made her debut as a 4yo last April, and she didn't show much on her first three runs. She started off in handicaps off a mark of 57 over today's course and distance (gd), and she ran her best race yet to finish third, beaten just over 4L.

She proved that was no fluke next time, kept to the same trip at Leopardstown off 2lb lower, finishing third again behind Knights Templar, beaten just 2L on this occasion. She went off the boil for her next couple of runs at Bellewstown and Navan, and her mark plummeted to 48. Magia Del Corso headed to Tipperary (7.5f ylf/soft) for her seasonal comeback last month, and she showed plenty of promise under a tender ride from Ronan Whelan.

She was very slowly away out of the stalls, and Whelan didn't seem to be in much of a hurry as she quickly became detached from the pack. She was still a long way last after 3f, but she closed up to the pack as they rounded the home turn. She actually stayed on pretty well in the closing stages, and though she only finished 9th it was an encouraging seasonal comeback.

She returns to the scene of her handicap debut tomorrow, and she has been handed a lovely draw in stall 3. She was off 57 when she was beaten just over 4L last year, and she was rated 55 when beaten 2L at Leopardstown. Magia Del Corso runs off just 47 in this contest, 10lb lower than for her handicap debut.

The form of her yard is a huge positive too, as McCourt fired in a double during the week. She obviously needs to be a lot better from the gates tomorrow, and Whelan can't let her get too far behind early doors. However, she showed me enough last time at Tipperary, and on her first two handicap runs, that she has enough ability to win a race and hopefully that day is tomorrow. She looks well overpriced at 20/1, and she could well outrun those odds and reward each way support.


Draw Proving To Be Key In Big Fields At Ayr

The draw did for Englishman yesterday, though in saying that he didn't run to anywhere near his best. All the action unfolded down the far side in the Bronze Cup, and low numbers have been dominating in big fields at Ayr this week.

In the Silver Cup I have had a small each way bet on the Michael Dods trained My Name Is Rio. He has been on the drift this morning, and he is as big as 66/1 with Coral. In the Racing Post this morning Dods said he was expecting him to get into the Bronze Cup yesterday, but he sneaks in here off a nice racing weight of just 9-2.

His best form this year has come over 5f, and he was a winner at Beverley (good to soft) back in July over the minimum trip. However, this 6yo son of Captain Rio has plenty of decent form at today's trip of 6f, and off a rating of 90 he is just one pound above his last winning mark. He is a previous course winner (5f  gd) off 89. and three of his six career wins have come over 6f.

Sean Levey has been booked for the ride, and he has a decent record when riding for Dods. From 33 rides he has 6 wins and 11 places, so he has hit the frame on over 50% of his rides for the canny trainer. My Name is Rio has been handed an excellent draw in stall 6, and he will have no excuses on that front. He has to leave the form of his last run behind him, but Dods has his string in fine form at the moment so an improved showing would come as no surprise.

The Gold Cup looks as competitive a renewal as ever, and there are no shortage of potential winners in the field. I had a few quid each way on G-Force at 28/1 earlier in the week, but he has shortened dramatically and the 12/1 available now looks a touch skinny. However, he will love the ground, his handicap mark has dropped to a workable level and he has a decent draw in 11.

The former group 1 winner is from a yard that has already had a winner for these owners during the week, and their only other entry was beaten a neck into 2nd. G Force showed clear signs of returning to the boil last time at Navan, staying on nicely for 3rd on ground plenty soft enough for him.

The drying conditions at Ayr should suit him, and he gets to race off a mark of just 102. If he is back to anywhere near his best he should be capable of making an impact off that mark, and if he produces his peak form it could simply be a question of how far he wins by. However, you can never be too confident in a 25 runner, 6f battle charge, and he will require luck in running. If G Force gets the breaks he could be hard to beat and he looks worth supporting each way, even at his reduced odds of 12/1 with Stanjames, who are paying 5 places e/w.



Friday, 16 September 2016

Englishman To Spoil The Scottish Party

Jazz Ranger never got to the front at Listowel, and I knew our goose was cooked after 100 yards. He was allowed to come home in his own time, and the only consolation was that Balofilo didn't make a complete mug of me and win for Cullinane. With all the rain about soft ground has been a recurring theme, and one horse that will enjoy getting his toe in is Englishman in the Bronze Cup at Ayr.

The irony of this selection is plain to see, given that this is Scotland's flagship flat meeting. If ever a winner of the Ayr Bronze Cup was going to be booed then this is the one, but I reckon Milton Bradley's charge can show the Scots who is boss. Bradley hasn't got a huge amount of ammunition in his arsenal, but when he has a lethal weapon he knows how to use it to inflict maximum damage.

Englishman is a 6yo gelded son of Royal Applause, and he has been the flag-bearer for Bradley this season. After a pipe opener at Doncaster he won two on the trot, off 82 under Franny Norton at Windsor (6f soft) and then two weeks later off 85 at Newmarket (6f good) with Joe Fanning on board. That earned him a rating of 91, but three below par runs from four efforts since has seen his mark slide back to 87.

He was given a couple of months off by Bradley during the summer, and he blew away the cobwebs at Haydock last time over an inadequate 5f (when he fell out of the stalls...). That should put him cherry ripe for the return to 6f and he is off a mark of 87, a pound below his highest winning rating. Two of his four wins have come in fields of 16 runners, so the hustle and bustle of today's race won't faze him. Affable Scouser Franny Norton will be back on board and, though his draw may not be ideal, I think Englishman ticks a lot of the right boxes for the Bronze Cup. He is well worth an each way interest at his current odds of 20/1.


Sunday, 11 September 2016

Ranger To Relish Return To Heavy Ground At Listowel

Highly Toxic was unfortunately declared a non runner at Leopardstown, but to be honest I was relieved because the ground hadn't turned testing enough for him. Hopefully you followed me in on Harbour Law, who took full advantage of a Ballydoyle blunder to take the St Leger for the Mongans under an inspired ride from George Baker. Plenty of fingers were burned on Idaho I am sure but, even so, it is marvellous to see small stables doing so well against powerhouse yards with billions behind them.

I was waiting on Hawkbill for the big race double, but he got hampered early on and never looked comfortable afterwards. I was expecting more testing conditions on the day, but the showers never arrived and that put paid to Hawkbill's chances. Almanzor ran out a most impressive winner, and it was an outstanding performance from the French horse. Soumillon produced him widest of all, and he travelled well before showing a startling turn of foot to put the race to bed. He is 7 from 9 now and he has given promising sire Wootton Bassett his first Group 1 winner.

Listowel is the place to be in Ireland this week, and only for work I would be down there myself. There is some decent action there on Monday, and the one I like goes in the conditional jockey's 2m handicap hurdle at 5.10. The Cullinane yard has two entries here, including last year's winner Balofilo, but I think Jazz Ranger looks an intriguing contender. This 4yo son of Bushranger won his maiden hurdle on bottomless ground at Punchestown on New Years Eve 2015, He followed that up by chasing home Footpad on equally bad ground at Gowran, before he was well beaten in a Grade 3 at Fairyhouse.

He was put away after those efforts and reappeared a few months later at Dundalk over 12f. He followed that with a poor run in a handicap hurdle off 113 at Punchestown on ground that would have been quick enough for him. He was freshened up again after that and returned with a much better effort at Ballinrobe (13f yielding) when beaten just half a length off 61. His form nosedived after that, and he has mixed hurdling and the level with no success. However, he has been running on nice summer ground, and the muck that awaits him at Listowel tomorrow will be much more to his liking,

This will be his first try on heavy ground over hurdles since he was outclassed in the Grade 3 last February, and his mark has dropped to 109 so he gets into a lower grade than he was previously competing at. Young O'Connell has been booked for the ride, and he has ridden two winners for Cullinane in the past. Cullinane also runs Balofilo, who won this last year, but he is 18lb higher here, and still 12lb above his highest winning mark. I would much rather side with Jazz Ranger at more than double Balofilo's odds, and at 20/1 he is worth a small e/w bet in the hope that heavy ground sparks him back into form.


Friday, 9 September 2016

Testing Ground To Suit Toxic At Leopardstown

Hatton Cross ran a cracker for us earlier at Down Royal, but once again he bumped into a well treated rival. He stayed on well for 2nd, and kept to the same grade it won't be long until he gets his head back in front. Tomorrow is a cracking day of racing, with group races galore on both sides of the Irish Sea. However, the one I like goes in the 14f Premier Handicap at Leopardstown, and Highly Toxic will appreciate all the rain that has fallen on the South Dublin track during the last couple of days.

This regally bred 5yo son of Dalakhani has been difficult to place for his shrewd handler Pat Flynn, but he may well have found the ideal race for him tomorrow now that conditions have turned in his favour. The ground is currently described as good at Leopardstown and, even though the track is known for its good drainage, I would be astounded of there isn't soft in the description tomorrow. It has absolutely chucked it down all day and there are more showers forecast for Saturday.

Highly Toxic's best recent form has come on an easy surface, and indeed his only win came on soft ground in a Clonmel maiden last year. He has shown some more than useful form in defeat and he produced his two best runs of this season on the two occasions he encountered his favoured ground conditions. Back in June in the Cork Derby (12f soft), another Premier Handicap, he was an excellent front running 2nd beaten 2L off 89 by Alveena, who was beaten under 4L in a Group 2 next time out.

He then headed to the Curragh for another Premier Handicap (12f gd/yld), this time off 91, when he again tried to do it the hard way and he kept on well for 3rd. He was 3/4L behind Intisari in 2nd and he is a pound better off with that rival tomorrow. That horse is priced up at just 14/1, whereas Highly Toxic can be backed at 33s. The Flynn horse has the plum draw in stall 1, so hopefully he bounces out and makes a bold bid from the front. There is plenty of stamina in the dam side of his family, and he is bred along similar lines to Leger winner Conduit, so hopefully the trip won't be an issue. He looks worthy of a small each way bet and can outrun his odds of 33/1.


Thursday, 8 September 2016

Hatton Can KO Rivals At Down Royal

It was a poor day for the blog on Wednesday with two non-runners and two losers from four selections. Thorntoun Lady was backed off the boards, but she showed the pitfalls involved in following market movers by never getting out of last place. Our Charlie Brown drifted like an absolute barge out to 33/1 and ran accordingly. He was too free and it looks as though he will be suited by a stronger pace. He is not one to write off just yet. 

Having looked through the cards tomorrow I have decided against previewing the entire Doncaster card. In fact, my eye is drawn to a horse on the other side of the Irish Sea, and Hatton Cross has shaped like he is ready to return to the winner’s enclosure on his last couple of runs. This 7yo son of Moss Vale has been expensive to follow since his last win at Dundalk back in October last year, and this year he has produced more moderate runs than good ones. 

His best run came this season at Tipperary on yielding ground (7.5f) when he just failed to beat Jembatt by a short head off 63. His next two runs were less than impressive at Galway (7f yielding) and Killarney (8f) but he ran much better than his finishing position of 11th suggests on his penultimate run at the Curragh off a mark of 66 (6f gd). He was just over 5L behind the winner Ducky Mallon, and he stayed on really nicely in the closing stages. 

He closed the gap to that rival to just over 2L off a pound lower at Navan last time out (6f sft) and this time he stayed on even more eye-catchingly at the end of the race. That was a much stronger heat than today's race, and though he is off top weight here he is off a mark of 65, a pound lower than at Navan last time. That is still a couple of pounds above his highest winning mark, but the drop in class looks sure to suit and he was only just beaten by Jembatt his last try in this grade. 

Wayne Lordan takes the ride and he knows this gelding inside out. With a strike rate of just 2 turf wins from 35 starts he is obviously not the easiest horse to win with, but in fairness he has been placed on 11 other occasions on turf so he is probably more consistent than he is given credit for. He will be held up, so luck in running is a must, but I think his odds of 12/1 look over inflated and he is the each way selection in what looks a wide open handicap. 


Tuesday, 6 September 2016

Doncaster St Leger Festival Day 1

Quiet Reflection made no mistake on Saturday and, as the saying goes, 'I love it when a plan comes together'. She travelled supremely well and when Dougie pushed the button a furlong out she put the race to bed in an instant.

It could be argued that The Tin Man was unlucky as he blew the start, but the start is as much a part of the race as the finish, so in reality his connections can have no complaints. The best horse definitely won on the day. It was a pity Gordon Lord Byron ran so poorly, and maybe old Father time has finally caught up with the veteran sprinter.

Tomorrow is the start of the St Leger festival at Doncaster, and as I have a bit of time on my hands I have decided to go through the card. A couple of races don't appeal as betting heats, but I do fancy a few. Below are my thoughts on Day 1 of what should be a cracking few days of racing.


I really fancied Dream Of Dreams to run a huge race last time in the Gimcrack at York. However, he was pulled up sharply before the race had begun in earnest and, though he was reportedly none the worse for his ordeal, I just can't go back in again at just 11/4.

The one I think is overpriced here is the Mark Johnston trained colt Town Charter, a son of Lonhro that ran out an easy winner his sole start on good to soft ground. He is rated 88 after three starts, and that gives him an awful lot to find with the top rated Dream Of Dreams, who is rated 102.

However, this colt was very impressive his only start on easy ground, and the current ground description at Doncaster is good to soft. The top two have shown their best form on a firm surface, and the same applies to the other Johnston runner Jacquard. De Sousa has been booked and he is 4/13 on 2yos for Johnston this season. 8/1 looks too big and if Dream Of Dreams has another off day, he could be the one to capitalise.



This class 2 nursery handicap looks a competitive little heat, and Ontoawinner's Our Charlie Brown is sure to be popular after his mightily impressive win last time. The form of that run has been franked, and his 9lb raise looks more than justified. He is now off a rating of 71, and judging by the authority of his win last time that should be well within his compass. However, it was only a class 6 contest the last day, and this represents a huge step up in class.

The ground will be different too, although his pedigree offers hope that he should handle an ease just fine. His sire American Post is not a stallion I am overly familiar with, but he does have a decent  strike rate on easy ground and he won on good to soft himself. Andok looks the biggest danger, though the other Easterby entry should not be discounted either. They could struggle to concede weight to Our Charlie Brown though, and at odds of 5/1 he is a confident selection.



On the figures this looks between the top three in the market, and if the handicapper is right they should finish a fair distance ahead of the rest. However, the top two have to carry top weight of 9-13, and Thesme gets 5lb from both of those horses, even though she is rated just 1lb less. However, the one I like at a huge price is the Robert Cowell trained speedster Iffranesia, who drops back down to listed level after a couple of runs in group 1 contests.

This 6yo has been a super horse for connections since arriving from France, and she has won 8 races since her first win off a mark of just 50 in a class 7 handicap at Kempton. She has risen through the handicap ranks, and she tasted success at pattern level for the first time in a listed heat at Chantilly on her final run of last season (5.5f gd/sft). She has been very highly tried for the most part this season, and she ran a cracker to be 2nd in a group 2 back at Chantilly in June.

She was well beaten on her next two starts at Group level, but she should be well suited by the drop in class tomorrow. She has a course and distance win to her name, she won't mind what the weather does, and she is trained by a man who has a midas touch with sprinters. She looks too big a price at 25/1, and she is the each way suggestion in what should be a cracking race.



This legend's race is not one to get heavily involved in and it is one to watch and enjoy.


Once again I have no strong fancy for this race unfortunately. Nothing looks criminally overpriced and with only 6 going to post there is no real each way angle.


Yet another small field, and it doesn't appeal as a betting heat.


Thorntoun Lady is a horse I have been keeping a close eye on this season, and I must confess that I backed her last time out at Haydock. Young Joe Doyle endured a troubled passage on the Jim Goldie trained mare, and the 6yo daughter of Henrythenavigator would have been a lot closer than the 3.5L she finished behind the winner with a clear run.

That effort came off a mark of 71, and the handicapper has generously dropped her to 69 after that fine effort. She won by nearly 3L the last time she raced off such a low rating (Haydock 5f gd/fm) and she ran arguably even better there last September when 2nd off 75, beaten just a length. However, she is 2lb out of the handicap here, so she races off the same mark as last time (71).

Two of her first three starts came here on good/good to firm and she ran well on both occasions. She didn't run well here back in August off 76, but that was a class 3 and she will be much more at home in this class 4 contest. Paul Hanagan replaces Doyle in the saddle, and he has won 6 and been placed on 24 of his 99 rides for Goldie. Hopefully he can add win number 7 on his 100th ride for the shrewd trainer at Doncaster tomorrow.


Thursday, 1 September 2016

Encore Looks Overpriced At Kempton

It has been a quiet week for the blog this week, but I haven't had any strong fancies so what can I do. I am really looking forward to seeing Quiet Reflection back in action on Saturday in the Sprint Cup, and on a more forgiving surface I think she can make her presence felt. She will be suited by the likely breakneck pace, and if the forecast rain arrives I think she could be the one to be with. Gordon Lord Byron is also capable of running well if the ground eases, and you can read a full preview here.

Tomorrow I like the look of one at Kempton, and on his last run on the all weather he looks well overpriced at 12/1. Hier Encore goes in the 2m handicap at 20.30 and he is in the care of up and coming trainer David Menuisier. This 4yo son of Kentucky Dynamite showed next to nothing on his first four starts, but he showed he had ability three runs back when second at 50/1 at Nottingham (14f soft) from 11lbs out of the handicap. His burden was offset by the 7lb claim of his jockey Rory Walsh, but even so it was a cracking effort and the way he stayed on suggested he would stay even further. 

He was raised to a mark of 56 for that run, but he backed it up with another excellent run at Lingfield off his new mark when upped to 16f for the first time. He was then sent off to France, probably to chase some better prize money on easy ground, but he could only manage a ninth placed finish at Deauville (15f good). The quicker ground and drop to 15f probably did for him, and he will be suited by the step back up to 16f and returning to the all weather. He races off 56, the same mark as he had at Lingfield, and William Carson (1/6 for the yard) takes the ride. There are plenty that like to be prominent in the field so Hier Encore should get a good pace to aim at, and at odds of 12/1 he is a confident each way selection. 


32Red Group 1 Sprint Cup Stakes Preview

This weekend the big race of the day on Saturday is the Group 1 32Red Sprint Cup Stakes at Haydock. All the action will be broadcast live on Channel 4 at 16.30, and this is a race you won’t want to miss. Some of the fastest sprinters in the business will be doing battle over 6f, and Limato is a warm order to give Henry Candy a second successive victory in this race, and his third win since 2010.

However, with rain seemingly on the way the 2/1 about him looks rather skinny, and Candy is unlikely to run him if there is soft in the description. One horse that won’t mind a drop of rain is Karl Burke’s flying 3yo filly Quiet Reflection, and she looks to have an outstanding chance for the Ontoawinner Syndicate. No favourite has won since Dream Ahead back in 2011, and with 17 runners due to go to post this year’s renewal looks as competitive as ever.  



Trainer: Henry Candy
Jockey: Harry Bentley
Age: 4yo
Odds: 2/1 Bet365

Limato confirmed himself as one of the quickest horses around with a superb win in the Darley Cup. He was 2L ahead of Suedois and Quiet Reflection in that Group 1 sprint at Newmarket (6f gd/fm), but he is no banker to confirm the form if the ground eases. He has never raced on anything worse than good, and if there has been soft in the description he has usually skipped his engagements.  

If the weather gods rule in Limato’s favour and it stays dry, then his chance increases exponentially. He followed that Darley Cup win with a fine effort behind Mecca’s Angel at York in the Nunthorpe (5f good), so he comes into this race in fine fettle. However, the rain forecast for both tomorrow and Saturday has to be a massive concern, and it would be advisable to see what the weather does before lumping on Limato at 2/1 with Bet365 this Saturday.


Trainer: Karl Burke
Jockey: Dougie Costello
Age: 3yo
Odds: 11/2 Coral

This 3yo daughter of Showcasing has taken her owners on a journey they could scarcely have imagined possible. She has won five of her last six, including races at Listed, Group 3, Group 2 and Group 1 level. She was spectacular when landing the Group 2 Sandy Lane over course and distance, and she followed that up with a superb win in the Commonwealth at Royal Ascot. She came unstuck in third behind Limato and Suedois last time, but underfoot conditions will be much more to her liking on Saturday, once the forecast rain arrives.

With 17 runners in the field they are almost certain to go lickety split early doors, and that will suit Quiet Reflection down to the ground. Dougie Costello knows her inside out, and he knows he has to sit tight and wait for the gaps to arrive. This is racing, so those gaps aren’t certain to come and she will need a bit of luck in running. However, there will be few travelling better a furlong out and, if she gets the breaks and shows the same turn of foot that she did on her last visit to Haydock, she could be hard to beat. If the rain comes, the 11/2 on offer from Coral won’t last long, and she has an outstanding chance of gaining her second Group 1 win on Saturday.


Trainer: James Fanshawe
Jockey: Tom Queally
Age: 4yo
Odds: 15/2 Paddy Power

For a horse that started off in handicaps off a mark of just 79 after his 3yo maiden win, this 4yo son of Equiano has come an awfully long way in a short period of time. After a handicap win off 91 last October at Ascot (6f good) he was pitched into Group 1 company over the same course and distance. This time the ground was good to soft, and he ran a huge race to be third behind Muharrar and the winner of this race last year, Twilight Son.

He returned to action with a stylish Listed win at Windsor back in May (6f gd) but he followed that up with a poor effort in the Diamond Jubilee. He was dropped back down to Group 3 company at Newbury last time out, and he scrambled home by a head from Divine. There is no way a repeat of that form will suffice here, and he needs a few of these to have an off day. He doesn’t appeal at odds of 15/2 with Paddy Power, and he is probably best watched on this occasion.


Trainer: Andrew Balding
Jockey: Franny Norton
Age: 3yo
Odds: 9/1 Betway

This 3yo daughter of Aqlaam has been a revelation, and she has gone from strength to strength in the last few months. She has progressed at a rate of knots since her handicap win on her return to action in May off a mark of just 75. She only had a nose to spare on that occasion so more improvement looked unlikely, but she has shown that she deserves a crack at this level. She won three of her next four handicaps since that win in May, and she scaled new heights when taking the 27 runner Stewards Cup last time off a mark of 102 from Orions Bow (Goodwood 6f gd/fm).

Franny Norton takes the ride for the first time, and he doesn’t get too many chances at Group 1 level these days. He will be eager to grasp the opportunity with both hands, and he is on an in form filly. A repeat of her run at Goodwood would see her make the frame, but whether she is good enough to beat the best of these is another matter. The only worry would be genuine soft ground, as she has been more impressive on a quicker surface. She has each way claims at best at odds of 9/1 with Betway.


Trainer: Charles Hills
Jockey: Frankie Dettori
Age: 4yo
Odds: 9/1 BetVictor

This 4yo son of Zebedee has won six of his seventeen starts, including races at Group 3 and Group 2 level. Those wins came at Newmarket (6f gd/sft) and York (6f gd) respectively earlier this season, and he had Suedois behind in second on the latter occasion. He has produced a couple of cracking efforts in Group 1s, none more so than when running a stormer in this last year. That was his first run at this level, and he was less than a length behind the winner Twilight Son in third place.

He seemed to relish the bit of juice in the ground that day, and his best form has come with a slight ease. He was again a close fourth behind Twilight Son in the Diamond Jubilee on his penultimate start, before disappointing slightly last time out behind Limato, Suedois and Quiet Reflection in the Darley Cup. He won’t mind any of the forecast rain, and if it comes up good to soft he is capable of producing a big run at odds of 9/1 with BetVictor.


Suedois has form that ties in with the majority of the market leaders, and he undoubtedly has the raw ability to go close. He will appreciate any moisture in the ground, but as his record of 6/23 shows he is quite hard to win with. He is currently a 14/1 shot with Boylesports, and he has a realistic place chance.

Old timer Gordon Lord Byron is another that could sneak into the frame. The evergreen 8yo won this race three years ago, and he is still a more than useful performer on his day. He will be staying on late in the day when others have cried enough, and if enough rain falls he is capable of outrunning his odds of 28/1 with Coral.


This has the potential to be a cracking contest, but the deciding factor could be the underfoot conditions. Limato would be impossible to oppose on good to firm, but he is more than beatable if there is any juice in the ground. Dancing Star is another whose speed could be blunted by easy ground, and for that reason she is best watched on her first crack at Pattern level.

The ones to be interested in if the ground eases are Suedois, Magical Memory and Quiet Reflection. The Burke filly is the current 11/2 second favourite with Coral, and that price will disappear if the ground eases significantly. She has a spectacular turn of foot on her day, and with the race likely to be run to suit she is a confident selection to add a second Group 1 to her trophy cabinet. For those looking for an each way alternative at a big price, Gordon Lord Byron could sneak into a place if underfoot conditions deteriorate enough.  

                                               GORDON LORD BYRON E/W 28/1