Diploma certainly graduated with flying colours. Let’s hope we can find a few more like her today and there are plenty to consider. We need to start off with the goings.
YORK – Good to Firm (watered)
NEWMARKET – Good to Firm Stalls stand side (low numbers favoured) (watered)
ASCOT – (watered)
Straight course – Good to Firm (stalls centre) but going stick suggests stand side is quicker, high numbers favoured.
Round course – Good to Firm (Good in places)
CHESTER – Good (Good to Soft in places)
SALISBURY – Good to Firm (Good in places) (watered)
Summary of todays #startracking bets
Ascot 2.10 Kocollada 20/1 ¼ 1,2,3 on offer with Coral and she is a one star* each way wager.
Ascot 3.20 Mustashry is a two star** e/w selection @ 12/1 general
Ascot 3.20 El Hayem is a one star* win @ 12/1 with Ladbrokes/Betfred
Ascot 3.55 Mutawathea is a two star** e/w selection @ 12/1 ¼ 1,2,3,4,5 with Coral and Betfred.
Ascot 4.30 Dartmouth is a one star* win @ 4/1 general.
Ascot 5.00 Chiswick Bey is a one star* e/w @ 14/1 general ¼ 1,2,3,4.
York 3.00 Farlow is a one star* win @ 13/2
York 4.10 Ninjago is a one star* win @ 10/1 ¼ 1,2,3,4 with PP
Salisbury 8.20 Musdam is a two star** win @ 9/4.
The trends suggest you are looking for an in-form, 4 or 5 year old, run in the last 42 days, carrying 9st 1lb or less, has won over 7F and has big handicap experience. That brings in the likes of Librisa Breeze (although he steps down to 7F and is 8/1 Favourite,), Brazos (C&D winner, 7F specialist and currently below last winning mark and won 9 days ago to get in here), Suzi’s Connoisseur (just 1 win in 25 starts in last 2 years!), Nuno Tristan (Unexposed at 7F, yet to prove himself in C2 and ridden by Mr Marmite, Jamie Spencer) BUT none of those rock my boat with the exception of perhaps Brazos. I am just sticking to the best 7F handicap form so far in 2016 namely the Victoria Cup here at Ascot and the Bunbury Cup at Newmarket. Flash Fire and Mutawathea were in the first five in both and Heavens Guest beat the pair at Newmarket and chased home Jallota at York in another strong C2 handicap. I’ll pass on Flash Fire as the handicapper may now have him and he’s drawn 6 and I think the race will happen on the stands side. I’ll pass on Heavens Guest because I think he’s best with some cut in the ground and I’m not sure he’s improving as a 6yo. Mind you he’s bang in form, never gives less than 100%, love’s Ascot and MacNamara takes 7lbs off. I think it’s the turn of Mutawathea for an in-form Simon Crisford. I like his draw in 15 especially as he’s close to probable pacesetter Majestic Moon in stall 20 and I am also keen on the booking of stylish apprentice George Wood and the 7lbs he takes off. Mutawathea is a two star** e/w selection @ 12/1 ¼ 1,2,3,4,5 with Coral and Betfred.
Ascot 3.20 EL HAYEM Hacked up on this ground in his maiden and was held by Sir Roderic on handicap debut at Sandown. More to come I’m sure and has to be supported. One star* win @ 12/1 with Ladbrokes/Betfred
Ascot 3.20 MUSTASHRY Ground went against him at Royal Ascot in the Britannia and I am not going to desert him now back over C&D on quicker ground as I am convinced #SuperStoute thinks this horse is well handicapped. Two star** e/w selection @ 12/1 general.
Ascot 4.30 DARTMOUTH I hang my head in shame regards this horse. He has done me so many favours but I deserted him in the G2 Hardwicke because I doubted he was that standard and like jockey Ryan Moore went for Exosphere! Is he a Group 1 horse? I don’t think he is. Could he win this race? Absolutely. Sub-standard edition but at 5/2 he didn’t appeal. However he’s now drifted to 4/1 and for a G2 C&D winner that’s fine. One star* win @ 4/1 general.
Newmarket 3.45 THETIS My notebook says “I’m not sure she is a Black Type filly and her handicap mark, OR102, flatters her. Beware.” Disappointed in a C3 Conditions race and has been dropped 5lbs to OR 97 and goes back sprinting over 6F with Uncle Ted doing the steering. 7/1 is tempting but too many doubts. Watching Brief.
York 4.45 PLAYFUL SOUND Mixed messages from her maiden win on her only start to date. Newsells Stud home bred filly was held up and finished strongly despite running green and looking around. The fact that #SuperStoute puts her in a handicap straight away fascinates but Ralph Beckett’s top weight has impressed and the Gosden AW winner could be anything so it’s a Watching Brief.
Salisbury 8.20 MUSDAM After his last run on the sand at Chelmsford I noted “Chelmsford AW C2 6F 0-100 3yo handicap. Pushed early, struggling to lay up, bit of progress off bend. Extra furlong? Turf with some cut? OR82 “..the task of coming from behind was insurmountable…”. So this is the extra furlong but on quick ground. Plenty of scope and the 9/4 general represents value so is a two star** win.
York 3.00 FREE CODE Now down to OR 88, 7F is fine but I’m just don’t think York suits a hold up horse and this is a trappy contest. Watching Brief.
York 4.10 NINJAGO Ex Hannon and now with sprint king Paul Midgely and I thought he might play a big part in next Saturdays Stewards Cup at Goodwood so his presence here has my ears pricked. He’s a one star* each way at a tempting 10/1 ¼ 1,2,3,4 with PP.
Most of today’s runners from Musley Bank are either Watching Brief’s or NotWithMyMoney but a few are of interest.
York 2.00 GABRIALS KING My notes say “Hasn’t won in last fourteen outings since November 2014 and I’m not convinced he genuinely stays a truly run two miles.” However there are a few positives here, namely it’s a C3 and Paul Hanagan rides. Indeed a case could be made for backing blind all four mounts Hanagan has for #FantasticMrFahey back at York (Farlow, Sirens Cove and Vona are the other three). Watching Brief.
York 3.00 FARLOW Great run last time on this quick ground and despite being rated OR100 he could be about to deliver, July/August is his time of year. Hanagan rides and is worth a one star* win @ 13/2 general.
York 4.10 TATLISU Regular readers of this blog know I think this horse will win the Great St Wilfred at Ripon, 6F C2, so I’m expecting a run on 6th here. Ground may be a bit quick. Watching Brief.
Ascot 2.45 #FantasticMrFahey muddies the water by running two, KOCOLLADA and MARIE OF LYON, who are above standard northern 2yo fillies. I was impressed with how the former stayed on in the Princess Mary over 5F at Royal Ascot behind the mind blowing Lady Aurelia. I can’t resist the 20/1 ¼ 1,2,3 on offer with Coral and she is a one star* each way wager. Wouldn’t be surprised if Marie of Lyon finished in front!
Ascot 3.55 NUNO TRISTAN Spencer, who I thinks rides Ascots straight course as well as anyone, is on this in form unexposed type and I look forward to see if he’s good enough to join #FantasticMrFahey’s Saturday team. Watching Brief.
Ascot 5.00 CHISWICK BEY I think this old campaigner could nick a place here. No weight, Ms Bullock won at Pontefract recently, Chiswick Bey has C&D form, won off this mark and second in this race last year. One star* e/w @ 14/1 general ¼ 1,2,3,4.
Below is #FantasticMrFahey’s piece from sportinglife.com
Richard Fahey guides us through another huge Saturday team, with Tatlisu one to watch in the Sky Bet Dash.
On Saturday we’ve three in the opening Sky Bet Making Betting Better Median Auction Maiden Stakes. The same comments probably apply to both Come On Percy and Yorkshire Bounty in that their futures lie in handicaps and I’d surprised if they could win a race like this at this stage of their careers. Owner Phil Smith loves runners at York and we hope they go well for him. Rubiesnpearls needs to step up on her first to runs but is a filly who we do think is ok so she could do that.
Gabrial’s King really needs to bounce back in the Sky Bet Best Odds Guaranteed Handicap. He disappointed here the last day but that was a messy race and things didn’t fall right for him and I’m happy with him at home still.
Farlow is my sole runner in the Read Richard Fahey’s Column At sportinglife.com Handicap. He surprised me with how well he ran in the Bunbury Cup last time as at halfway I thought he was dropping out to finish last. He’d prefer a bit more juice in the ground but if Paul Hanagan can get the best out of him he wouldn’t be without a chance and the smaller field here should suit.
We’ve three in the Sky Bet Dash Handicap. Tatlisu disappointed me at Hamilton last time but the ground was quite soft which didn’t suit and he never looked comfortable on it. It was a good run at Haydock the time before and could go well. I keep saying Arctic Feeling is badly handicapped and he keeps running well without winning so maybe I’m right. The hope here is they’ll go flat out as he’ll be coming back at them late. Patrick was a horse I felt would progress this year but he needs to find some form now. He disappointed at Ascot the last day but we go back up a furlong here which should help. He’s in good order.
Island Flame ran at Doncaster on Thursday so we’ll see how she goes there – and how she comes out of it – before we decided whether she runs in the Sky Bet Supporting New Beginnings EBF Fillies’ Handicap. Siren’s Cove is our other runner and we’re very happy with her. She was entitled to need the run here the other day when she finished fifth and she’s in good order. She could go well at a decent price.
Vona won a Listed race at the Dante meeting and while she’s had a busy enough time of it this year, she ran ok in a nursery here last time. She wouldn’t be without a chance providing there’s nothing progressive in against her in the Sky Bet Supporting Yorkshire Air Ambulance Nursery.
We’ve a nice team heading down to Ascot. Marie Of Lyon is a filly we like a lot and I hope she just got bogged down in the very testing ground at Newmarket last time. Paul Hanagan said she travelled very well but when he let her down she just swam around. She’s by Royal Applause so should be more at home on the surface at Ascot and while she needs to step up again to be competitive in the Princess Margaret Juddmonte Stakes, she might just do that.
Our other runner is Kocallada. She is a good, hardy filly, who won a Class 2 race earlier in the season and finished fourth in the Queen Mary. The step up to six furlongs will help her and she’d have a chance of being placed.
We’ve three in the Gigaset International Stakes. Heaven’s Guest won the race last year and loves the place. I’m a fraction worried he’s at his very best when there’s a bit of juice in the ground but he ran a cracker in the Bunbury Cup last time and must have a chance. Withernsea doesn’t need it soft – he’s fine on good ground – and has been running well so deserves a crack at a valuable prize. Nuno Tristan is in the form of his life right now. I just wonder whether he’s man enough at the moment for a test like this but he couldn’t be in better order heading down there.
Chiswick Bey is an absolute star and ran a blinder at an apprentice race here last time. Something like the Longines Handicap (For Lady Amateur Riders) could really suit him although seven furlongs here on fast ground might just be sharp enough.
Boundsy ran in the Super Sprint at Newbury last week. The ground there was very quick but he came out of the race so well he runs in the Stella Artois Nursery at Chester. He showed a lot of speed at Carlisle a couple of starts back and could go well.
Sunnua won at the track last time and while she’s probably at her very best with some juice in the ground, I couldn’t draw a line through her in the TMT Contractors Fillies’ Handicap.
Bell Heather has been a fraction disappointing but has a good draw in the Stella Artois Cidre Apprentice Handicap and is a filly who should be capable of winning races like this.
We’ve three in the Sebastian Artois Handicap and I really wouldn’t want to split them. Powerallied is having a fantastic season and loves the track. The ground will suit him but I just worry when the handicapper is going to get him. Ballesteros is another who has been in terrific form and he ran a cracker here last time. He’s done alright with stall six and is another to consider. So is Lexi’s Hero although he’s out in 12 which isn’t ideal. His best hope is they go flat out up front as he’ll be running on and looking to pick up the pieces late.
Comedy King has his first run for us in the Stella Artois 4% Handicap. I’m happy with what I’ve seen at home, he hasn’t had a lot of racing, and his work would suggest he could go well. We also run Gabrial The Duke who just seems to have lost the plot at the moment, on the track at least. He’s not been showing much interest so we’ve removed all the headgear now to see if we spark him back into life.
We’re double handed in the Adnams Broadside Handicap at Newmarket. Mica Mika is coming back after a long lay-off and will need to be at his best as he looks badly handicapped. He probably wants softer ground too but seems in good order. Innocent Touch has produced to solid performances back-to-back. We’re pleased with him and he should go well again.
David’s Duchess is running from four pounds out of the handicap in the Adnams Ease Up IPA Handicap which isn’t ideal but she did go well at the track last time and has been in good form all season. Paddy Power has been extremely disappointing. He again worked exceptionally well this week, as he always does, but just needs to get his act together on the
Finally we have three runners at Newcastle. In My Place is a progressive type. Nothing went right for him at Ayr last time and we’re hoping he wins the Collingwood Fleet Insurance Handicap and picks up a penalty as the owner is very keen to get into a race at Glorious Goodwood.
Bayan Kasigra’s form has faded away a little but we’ll try again in the Collingwood Taxi Insurance/ebfstallions.com Fillies’ Handicap. The hope is the return to an all-weather surface will suit her. The Name’s Bond has his first run for us in the Collingwood Convicted Driver Insurance Apprentice Handicap. You can see why he’s been frustrating as he works better than an official rating of 45 would suggest but we’ll see what he does on the track.