At the time of writing it is uncertain if the heavy showers coming up from the south east will hit Newmarket on Friday. As it stands the ground was described as good – good to soft in places – after racing on Thursday and the times of Thursday’s racing would concur with that description.
The Group 1 Cheveley Park Stakes may lack a superstar juvenile but it is a very competitive renewal of this 6f contest for fillies and preference for the Irish raider Miss Amulet (2.25) over the unbeaten Dandella is marginal.The selection won the Lowther at York last month berating Sacred a length and I think that form is strong despite the fact that the runner up was just touched off back at the minimum trip at Doncaster earlier in the month. Ryan Moore takes over in the saddle.
Dandella has been off the track since landing the Duchess Of Cambridge Stakes back in July and that form has been franked by the subsequent victories of runner up Fev Rover although on a line through the third – Santosha – she has a bit to find with the selection.
The form of Supremacy’s Richmond Stakes success has taken a few knocks in recent weeks and I feel the second Group 1 contest on the card the Middle Park Stakes for 2-y-old colts’ lies between the unbeaten Method, Gimcrack winner Minzaal and Irish raider Lucky Vega (3.00) with the latter getting the vote for Jessica Harrington.
The selection was constantly denied a run in the 7f National Stakes at the Curragh earlier in the month and it is significant that his astute handler brings him out so soon. His previous success in the Gp 1 Phoenix Stakes is, arguably, the best form in the book and he would not be inconvenienced if the ground deteriorated.
My two against the field in the Cambridgeshire are Tempus (3.35) and Ilaraab with preference for the progressive Roger Charlton-trained 4-y-old who has won four of his last five starts.The Kingman colt has never raced beyond an extended mile but he promises to be well suited by this additional furlong and he looked a class act when scoring at Ascot last time.
Great to see Goshen back on track on the level at Haydock. This is his first start since he fell at the last with the Triumph Hurdle at his mercy back in March. Gary Moore’s four-year-old makes no appeal as a betting medium at 4/6 but he is currently second favourite for the 2021 Champion Hurdle and his Road To Cheltenham starts here.
Aggy With It (12.35) won Bumper at Market Rasen and can make a winning seasonal debut in the opener back at the Lincolnshire track for Dan and Harry Skelton. I remember how well the selection was travelling when coming down two out at Worcester in October and may have still been feeling the effects of that mishap when disappointing at Newbury the following month. Her subsequent absence suggests all was not well with the mare and we know she goes well fresh.
Royal Magic was an impressive scorer at Newton Abbot last weekend and a 4lbs rise looks fair, but he has never been the most consistent of animals and preference is for Waitonit (1.35) who was backed as if defeat was out of the question when scraping home at Southwell from a 6lbs lower mark.
That doesn’t tell the whole story, however, as the gelding lost many lengths by constantly jumping out to his right and the return to this clockwise track will suit. One slight note of caution, the Nigel Twiston-Davies camp invariably targets Perth’s two-day meeting which took place midweek.They sent another strong raiding party north this week but returned home without a win to their name.
My two against the field in the valuable 2m 5f handicap chase are Bandsman (2.10) and Buster Thomas with preference for the former who has been plying his trade over further recently but takes a drop back in distance this afternoon. I think this intermediate trip looks ideal and he should have the race run to suit.