Yesterday’s York meeting was a cracker, and we have the “Dante” today!
I had my only selections in the opening race and, rather than go eachway, I had 2 “win” selections – I needn’t have bothered as they were both well beaten with 3-furlongs still to run. The race was won (in impressive style) by Pekan Star who was the only runner of the day for Roger Varian, who took over Mick Jarvis’s yard about 6 weeks ago. Varian has had a great start to his “career” suggesting that perhaps he was a lot more involved than just being Mick Jarvis’s assistant trainer.
Of my selections, SIRVINO was beaten after less than a furlong when suffering a bad bump, and was squeezed for room against the rails forcing him to drop back to the rear of the field but, more importantly, losing his momentum. SIRVINO is a “prominent” runner and being at the back was not where he wanted to be, so completely ignore this run. BONFIRE KNIGHT (the other selection in the race) was well-placed in-behind the leaders, but when the pace quickened at the 4-furlong pole, he found nothing – absolute zip-all. It was an unexplainable effort.
The Group 2, Duke Of York Stakes went to Saeed bin Suroor’s only runner of the day – Delegator (following top trainers with only a single runner on the day would’ve paid-off yesterday). The going at York was considered by jockeys to be on the soft side of good, and that almost certainly explains why Regal Parade (who needs to get his toe in the ground) was 2nd to Delegator. I thought the going would be too quick for him, but clearly it wasn’t. When he won on “good” at Newbury last July (Group 3 Shadwell Stakes) that going was also described on the “soft side of good”. I’ve no idea what happened to Genki . He’s not as good when there is some juice in the ground and much prefers it on the quick side, but this was disappointing. He was subject to a drift on the exchanges from 8.0 to 11.5 in the minutes before the off, which suggests either all was not right or confidence was not high with connections. Another horse I was interested in, Inler, had some money come for him (16’s in to 11/1) and ran well for 5-furlongs with the leaders, but did not have the speed at this level.
Lastly, Antigua Sunrise was 5th having been denied a place by just a neck (I did write that 8/1 was not eachway value). Both the Mark Johnston horse’s faded over a furlong out and, on reflection, it seems that those drawn “high” and being covered-up early were at an advantage on the ground.
There is a meeting at Newmarket this evening, and the only race that catches my eye is the 7f, Class 3 h’cap at 8:00, with Mr MACATTACK at 25/1 (William Hill and others). In my opinion, he should not be those odds. He ran well at Chester, despite not having a great draw, and his previous 2 runs (2nd both times) have worked out well. He’s best on a straight 7-furlong (IMO) and I think he’ll handle this good-to-firm going (based on his Chester run). There is a meeting at Salisbury, but I’m giving it a miss.
Onto York, and I’m not even going to try and fathom the opening Class 3, 5f h’cap. If Falasteen does not mess-up the break and repeats his Epsom run he could go close, but I’m watching and not wagering on this race. The Middleton Stakes at 2:00 should go to Midday, but I am a big fan of Music Show and she tries a trip beyond a mile for the 1st time today – but will she stay? I think she will, but this is a tough race, and I cannot advise a wager.
In the Dante, I am rooting for Carlton House who has been backed from 25’s last October to 5/1 as I write for the Epsom Derby, but with Seville and World Domination in opposition this is another “watching” race.
The Hambleton H’cap looks a puzzle to foil Archimedes! My immediate thought was Pintura, but at just 6/1 and drawn 2 in this 18 runner race, that’s not good enough IMO. I was impressed with Wannabee King when winning LTO, and he’s only been raised 3lb for that win to OR98. He’s run off OR103 before and, from stall 17, if the blinkers work again he could run well. Note that he’s not run well in 16+ runner handicaps before.
Lastly, in the 3yo, Class 2, 5f Stakes race at 3:35, expect to see a star of the season in NIGHT CARNATION. She won her seasonal debut in some style and I cannot see her being beaten today. Connections of Margot Did are hoping a drop in trip from 6f to 5f will bring about an improvement, but that is “hope” and not expectancy. I’d play the “Exacta” in this – Night Carnation to beat Margot Did, and if you’re feeling like a gambler, put Lord Avon down for 3rd place.
There are no selections today.
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