#startracking Wednesday August 17th 6pm

The Wagon Wheel’s victory will keep us rolling into Thursday as the gutsy filly rescued a disappointing punting day. 4th, 9th and 15th in the first, Lockheed had every chance at the furlong pole, Across The Stars looking to be hanging left all the way up the straight, Hawkbill was beaten before the race started (too fizzy!), Saved by the Bell led by 5L at halfway and finished in his own time and Life Less Ordinary looked promising but failed to stay.

The objective eye saw classy performances from a peerless Postponed and a staying Idaho. Sometimes I wonder if I try to be too clever with all six winners in the top four in the market. Self-searching later, onto Thursday!

Let’s start with some general observations.

GOING Simon Rowlands ‏@RowleyfileRRR  (Timeform) The going is definitely firmer than good judged on that first-race time at York. 61.77s for the opener at York is just 0.05s outside the course record for what is a little-used distance. That’s quick ground!

Tuesday blogWednesday and Thursday will be run on quick summer ground, officially Good to Firm (watered to maintain). There is a possibility of rain Friday afternoon and Saturday is forecast to be miserable and the ground could go very quickly.

Don’t be surprised if horses who really need Good to Firm ground suddenly bounce back to form having been hampered at Goodwood and a poor run at Royal Ascot on Good to Soft!

DRAW- So opening sprint handicap is 5,2,19,4,13. Draw or was it Robot Boy setting it up from stall 7? I’ll stick with the low numbers. 6,3,18,20,2 in the nursery, I will definitely stick with low on the straight course in the big fields.

Tuesday blogConfusing at best! Nothing is written in stone. I personally believe you want prominent racers but not necessarily leaders although the week’s hardest handicap, the 8F Clipper Logistics on Thursday, has been won by a horse who at the top of the home straight was in the final three!

From 10F upwards I would totally ignore the draw. It’s a short run to the bend from the 8F start and it’s easier to get a prominent position from a lower draw.

As for the straight course and the sprints there is conflicting evidence. Looking back over the past Ebor’s sprint races on Good to Firm double figure draws have held sway BUT in 2016 there have been eight sprint handicaps and the winners have come from stalls 5,4,2,2,3,9,4 and 5 and double figures are 0 from 68!!

 

THURSDAY AUGUST 18th

1.55 C2 6F 2yo Sales Race.

No idea?!? I will put up two against the field. Hemingway, Mr Hobbs.

HEMINGWAY – (Drawn 6) Looks a typical Kevin Ryan sprinter. Was professional when winning at Pontefract over 5F on Good to Firm ground. Made his debut in a C3 maiden here at York suggesting he was well thought of. I’m warming to Tom Eaves in the saddle. One star* win @ 10/1 general.

MR HOBBS – (Drawn 8) Squeezed home over 6F at Newbury on Good to Firm ground having been knocking on the door for his three previous starts. Frankie Dettori takes over in the saddle and Sylvester Kirk is having a solid season. One star* win @ 16/1 with Coral.

 

2.30 Lowther G2 2yo fillies 6F

Two words – FAIR EVA. Her dad, Frankel, lit up the Knavesmire and I fully expect his talented daughter to do the same. 2/1 on reflects her chance but that’s no bet for me.

FAIR EVA – Fair Eva worked well this morning and heads for the Lowther at York. George Baker rode her and was very happy. She won well at Ascot, in a good time and the Lowther sits well in the calendar. Roger Charlton Website 10th August 2016

Racing UK July 24th Roger Charlton said: “From the day she came here, we were very excited by her. She was always very professional and, as you saw yesterday, she is a wonderful mover.”

The only possible danger is her half-sister Queen Kindly from the Fahey yard.

Fahey’s assistant Robin O’Ryan told Racing UK: “Queen Kindly could now bid to emulate her dam Lady Of The Desert by winning the Lowther Stakes at York next month in the same colours of owner Jaber Abdullah. It will either be the Princess Margaret at Ascot or the Lowther,” O’Ryan added. “Going back up to six furlongs won’t be a problem – we think she needs it.”

 

3.05 Clipper Logistics C2 8F Handicap

You will need some luck to find the winner of this! It’s hard enough to get into, let alone win.

Three years ago David Bergin got his fractions spot on with Mont Ras and made every yard. However for the last two running’s Pat Smullen and George Baker have turned for home in the final three on winners Short Squeeze and Chil the Kite before finding a route to the winner’s enclosure.

ONE WORD MORE –               (7)        (Tim Easterby) OR100 Must be a nailed on each way shout. Course and trip are ideal, has made the frame when drawn 5 and 18, won’t mind the Good to Firm ground! Never had an inch of racing room at Goodwood last time behind Franklin D. Beware of improving fillies, beaten by Home Cummins and Always smile on last two starts at York! One star* win @ 8/1 general. (Well backed, Pricewise?)

JAILAWI –                            (20)        (Ismael Mohammed) OR99 Jailawi – RP Aug.11th Strong gallop report with York target mentioned. Here is an interesting horse. Son of Iffraaj, didn’t race as a 2yo, promising 3yo winning twice, didn’t race as a 4yo, touched off in a strong C3 at Sandown and murdered in the final furlong behind Franklin D at Goodwood having done a lot of running from stall 22. Prominent racer should be suited to York, big strong type (similar to stables John Smiths winner, Educate), trainer is having a cracking season from limited resources, Silvestre de Sousa is an eye-catching booking. Two stars** each way @ 16/1 with WH ¼ 1,2,3,4. (5 places with SkyBet 14/1)

 

3.40 YORKSHIRE OAKS G1 12F fillies 3yo+

This is a tough race to call with plenty of G1 form about. From a betting point of view I suppose it’s all about whether 15/8 about Found represents value or is there something that’s better each way value? Found hasn’t done a lot wrong but she has finished second eight times in sixteen runs suggesting she’s vulnerable, but she beat Golden Horn in the Breeders Cup Turf! The ground should suit her. Her opposition includes:-

TURRET ROCKS – Bolger also had news on Darley Yorkshire Oaks entry Turret Rocks. “She’s a good-ground filly and hasn’t ever had conditions right for her this year. She can still be a serious filly when she gets everything right,” he said. Racing Post RICHARD FORRISTAL 7:10AM 12 AUG 2016

FIREGLOW – after winning Listed British Stallion Studs EBF Chalice Stakes at Newmarket. Racing UK “Jock Bennett, assistant trainer, said: “ It (Yorkshire Oaks) would certainly not be out of the question. She has been fourth in a Group One and second in a Musidora. It will be up to Mark Johnston and John Ferguson and they will discuss where she goes next, but it’s not out of the question.”

QUEENS TRUST – Sir Michael Stoute was delighted with Queen’s Trust and said: “She’s run a blinder and has been out of luck. She should have won at Newbury and was badly drawn in the Ribblesdale. She will now head for the Galtres (at York).” Chris Richardson, for owners Cheveley Park Stud, added: “She has a lot of ability and has been very unlucky, coming from a long way back at Royal Ascot”

KOORA                 (Luca Cumani)  4 b f Pivotal – Kithanga Winner of two of her 7 starts. Better effort this season when runner-up, beaten a length and a quarter to Beautiful Romance in the Group 2 Middleton Stakes at York (1m 2 1/2f) in May. Currently rated 109. “She ran very flat in Ireland last time having run well in the Middleton at York on her reappearance. She is in good form and we are thinking of the Yorkshire Oaks.” Cumani ATR stable tour

Koora – RP Aug.11th Strong gallop report with York target mentioned.

If Found is beaten it will be by a 3yo and I’ll put up two of the Classic generation to come out on top.

ENDLESS TIME – Get the trip, goes on the ground, improver. One star* win @ 6/1 Coral, Ladbrokes

QUEENS TRUST – Cracking run behind Minding at Goodwood and on the up. One star* win @ 7/1 general.

 4.20 Galtres Listed 12F 3yo fillies

ABINGDON – After her win at Ascot at the beginning of May I put on this blog, “A filly with a future in middle distance + events, probably at Group level, the likes of the Yorkshire Oaks”. Her trainer Sir Michael Stoute has put Queens Trust in the Yorkshire Oaks and runs Abingdon in the Listed event. I think the course, the ground and the trip will all be in her favour and I think she will outstay this field.

Abingdon is a three star*** win selection @ 5/2 general.

 

4.55 3yo Fillies handicap 3yo 7F 0-105

DAWAA               (7)          (Mark Johnston) OR94 Running style suits York and already C&D winner. 3rd in similar race at Newmarket last time. Two star** win @ 13/2 general.

 

Now I’ve written my piece let’s see what #FantasticMrFahey has said to sportinglife.com.

Frankel is also to the fore in the Sky Bet Lowther Stakes on Thursday. His daughter Fair Eva looked very, very impressive in the Princess Margaret Stakes at Ascot the last day but we run another of his offspring, Queen Kindly. We’re very happy with our girl, six furlongs at York will suit her down to the ground, and she’s very well and in great form at home. I’m looking forward to running her.

Third Time Lucky had a great season last year but looks in the handicapper’s grip as a result. There aren’t many races to run a horse rated 100 in so he goes in the Clipper Logistics Stakes and we’ll see what happens.

If there’s ever such a thing as a soft race at this meeting then the eventmasters.co.uk EBF Fillies’ Stakes can sometimes be it. That said this year’s race looks competitive. My filly Mustique will have to raise her game here but I do think track and trip will suit her ideally.

#startracking Wednesday August 17th 12.15pm

Going @yorkracecourse for opening day of #EborFestival is Good to Firm. Watered 2mm overnight.

Racing Going Reports ‏@RCAGoingReports  9am Wednesday

Going Stick  @yorkracecourse 7.3 overall. Straight Course; Far Side – 7.3; Centre – 7.3; Stands Side – 7.2

Anthea L Morshead ‏@AntheaLMorshead Assistant Clerk of the course.  9am Wednesday

 

BITS and PIECES

John Ferguson, Godolphins Racing Manager “Godolphin racing manager John Ferguson said of Hawkbill: “The great thing about it is it’s a mile and a quarter, which we know he loves. He’s very flexible as far as ground conditions are concerned. And although he is taking on some of the best mile and a quarter horses in Europe, we believe he deserves to be there. Charlie is very happy with him. He is a horse that is maturing mentally all the time. They’ve done a great job with him and I think he will run well.” Let’s hope he’s right.

RACING POST The Punt 1.55 York Line Of Reason 14-1 “Not beaten far in Group 2 company last year and has slipped to a fair mark after some lacklustre efforts earlier this season. Showed wellbeing when second at Ascot last time and looks primed to give a good account of himself on his favoured fast ground.”

 

Sportinglife.com Ben Linfoot “Earlier on the meeting opens with the Symphony Group Handicap over the extended five furlongs and it’s a race local trainers have dominated down the years. That trend could well continue this year with Kevin Ryan, who has won two of the last three renewals, saddling Lexington Abbey who has sound claims after solid runs at Ascot and at York on his last two starts. However, jockey Pat Smullen jumps ship here to ride NINJAGO (16/1 generally, 20/1 Paddy Power), trained even more locally by York handler Paul Midgley, and he’s been given a real chance by the handicapper following below-par runs at Goodwood and Ascot on his last two starts.

Dropped 6lb from 101 to 95 following those runs, this is the lowest mark he’s raced off in his life and he’s really well-treated on loads of pieces of form, including his fourth here at York in May when he was beaten less than a length off a 7lb higher mark of 102. He also ran okay when seventh in the Sky Bet Dash on the Knavesmire in July, beaten four lengths off a 6lb higher mark. I backed him that day, as you may recall, and as I watched him never quite get into things I thought he just needed some help from the handicapper. That has duly arrived and back at York with Smullen booked he looks a big price at 16s.”

 

This guy knows his juveniles.

“David Baxter (Racing Post) Four juveniles for York 3:06PM 16 AUG 2016

Lonely The Brave, Betway Stakes (Nursery), Wednesday

This colt was also given an entry for the Gimcrack on Saturday, but this looks a more realistic task. He won really well at Chelmsford, albeit against lesser rivals, and was then second in a three-runner nursery at Chester. It was striking at Chelmsford that he is a big sort, so a switch to a more galloping track should suit him better. Off 84 he could have plenty more to offer.

Queen Kindly, Lowther Stakes, Thursday

A good one will be needed to down Fair Eva but there should be some each-way value and Queen Kindly could provide it. She ran a fine race on her second start in the Albany when third, then gained more experience with an easy win at Catterick. Back to six furlongs is no issue and Richard Fahey has his team in great form.

Yalta, Nunthorpe Stakes, Friday

The evergreen Kingsgate Native was the last juvenile to win the Nunthorpe, but Yalta looks a very interesting contender having been supplemented. The Mark Johnston-trained colt had been a big disappointment in Group company after two wins, but dropping back to the minimum led to a spectacular performance in the Molecomb at Goodwood. He lowered the two-year-old course record that day, and gets lumps of weight here.

Mokarris, Gimcrack Stakes, Saturday

Slow ground undid Mokarris in the Coventry, but he got back on track with a Listed win at Newbury last time. Simon Crisford continues to do well with his juveniles this season and this colt has only had three starts so there should be more to come.”

 

Luca Cumani website Wednesday 17th August.

“We should have plenty of runners this week including at York’s Ebor Festival which has been rather good to us down the years. We won the Listed EBF & Sir Henry Cecil Galtres Stakes eight times during the 1990s although we have not enjoyed the best of luck since (Koora was second in 2015) so we are hoping for better fortune with Michael and Michelle Morris’ Tiptree. She seemed to appreciate the step up to a mile and a half last time but she will need to improve again in what is always a competitive race of its type. The feature race on Thursday, however, is the Group 1 Darley Yorkshire Oaks in which we are doubly represented with Koora and Loving Things. Unfortunately, the forecast predicts sunny conditions, whereas rain would have helped both our fillies. With a number of high class fillies declared to run the challenge ahead is going to be a tough one, but both of ours go there in good form and are not without winning claims. We can forget Koora’s last race in Ireland, when she was not herself for whatever reason, and we know that this is her trip. Banksea will probably run at the York on Friday, dropping back to a mile, and we hope he can get back to form. We could also run Shakopee (York), War Story and Blind Faith (both Sandown) on Friday; however, we unfortunately won’t have a runner in the Convivial Maiden at York, a race we have won for the last two years. It is also disappointing that we will be without a runner in Saturday’s Ebor, the most valuable Flat handicap in Europe, but the search to find next year’s winner has already begun and Saturday is still set to be an exciting day. Aside from Total Star in the Solario; we are also set to run Bermondsey (if he gets in to the race) and Laurence at Sandown, in each of the mile and a quarter handicaps, and Fallen For A Star is also entered for a mile and a quarter handicap at York.”

 

#startracking Tuesday August 16th 5pm

In my opinion the best four days Flat racing of the summer is here. Twenty four uber competitive contests on the Knavesmire, York’s Ebor Festival. Let’s hope the last ten days homework is about to pay dividends! The Group races attract the very best and the handicaps are a joy to work out.

Let’s start with some general observations.

GOING Wednesday and Thursday will be run on quick summer ground, officially Good to Firm (watered to maintain). There is a possibility of rain Friday afternoon and Saturday is forecast to be miserable and the ground could go very quickly.

Don’t be surprised if horses who really need Good to Firm ground suddenly bounce back to form having been hampered at Goodwood and a poor run at Royal Ascot on Good to Soft!

DRAW- Confusing at best! Nothing is written in stone. I personally believe you want prominent racers but not necessarily leaders although the week’s hardest handicap, the 8F Clipper Logistics on Thursday, has been won by a horse who at the top of the home straight was in the final three!

From 10F upwards I would totally ignore the draw. It’s a short run to the bend from the 8F start and it’s easier to get a prominent position from a lower draw.

As for the straight course and the sprints there is conflicting evidence. Looking back over the past Ebor’s sprint races on Good to Firm double figure draws have held sway BUT in 2016 there have been eight sprint handicaps and the winners have come from stalls 5,4,2,2,3,9,4 and 5 and double figures are 0 from 68!!

STABLES to WATCH This is a very important meeting to all Yorkshire trainers. The money will attract Coolmore and Godolphin. Three yards though will have targeted this meeting.

Richard Fahey – Musley Bank is buoyant with the weekend Group 1 success of Ribchester in France. Fahey will have multiple entries in many races and the mounts given to Paul Hanagan, Adam MacNamara (claiming 5lbs) and even Jamie Spencer will be of special interest.

David O’Meara – They also had International success at the weekend with Mondialiste winning the Group 1 Arlington Million in America. O’Meara moved yards last winter and it’s taken him time to get his horses settled and to get the most out of his gallops but the yard is now flying. Like Fahey he will be mob handed in the handicaps but Daniel Tudhope rarely gets it wrong!

William Haggas – He may train at Newmarket but he’s a Yorkshireman to the core. All his runners must be considered as he rarely sends them to this meeting “for the run”.

Others to consider are Kevin Ryan, who rarely leaves empty handed, the Easterbys, who are having a strong season, Sir Michael Stoute, especially from 10F upwards and Luca Cumani, whose patience could pay off this week.

The Aiden O’Brien battalions will be without Joseph O’Brien (retired) and Ryan Moore (resting) and York isn’t an easy course to ride. Seamie Heffernan is 0 from 8 in the last five seasons and Colm O’Donohoe is 0 from 10.

 

WEDNESDAY AUGUST 17th

1.55 C2 5F 0-105 Handicap. Just had a look at Oddschecker and they are 10/1 the field for this twenty runner cavalry charge! History says you want a High draw but on the evidence of this season’s sprint handicaps selections MUST HAVE single figure draw!! (see above)

This race is run over 5 furlongs and 89 yards and those extra yards could be crucial! Three catch my eye, two drawn low and one drawn high. All three handle the ground, have form in the grade and have form at York.

NINJAGO                             (18)        (Paul Midgley/Pat Smullen) OR97 He is on a losing run of sixteen and never won a handicap but looks well handicapped and the trainer specialises in sprinters. Has run well at York before and signs that this intermediate sprint trip is ideal. One star* win @ 20/1 with PP.

ARCTIC FEELING               (1)          (Richard Fahey/Patrick Mathers) OR89 Creeps in at the bottom of the weights and Paul Hanagan rides for the first time in three years. Drawn 1 and shouldn’t have an issue getting a run. Race seems made for him. One star* win @ 25/1 with WH.

LINE OF REASON              (4)          (Paul Midgley/Martin Lane) 4yo g OR105 Has been running at a higher level lately but five and a bit furlongs on quick ground look spot on. One star* win @ 14/1 with PP and BetFred.

If I had to back one to win it would be Line of Reason and if just one each way it would be Arctic Feeling. I will put all three in my place pot.

 

2.30 Acomb G3 2yo 7F

BEST OF DAYS –                 (Hugo Palmer/William Buick) RP gallop report “..cleared away from a 95 rated 3yo!” Quoted on Godolphin.com, Palmer said: “He’s in great nick after his Sandown win. The immediate options are York or Salisbury, but he is a colt with long-term potential. He is a very nice horse and it’s nice to be training another for Godolphin.” Massively impressive on debut when winning by 6L in a 7F C5 Sandown maiden, settled, travelled, quickened. 2nd and 4th have been beaten since but the 5th has won.

LOCKHEED –                        (William Haggas/F.Dettori) I like this colt. Second on debut to the eye popping Frankel colt Seven Heavens at Ascot in a C3 6F maiden, he then used that experience to win a 7F C2 at Salisbury, quickening up well. I think there is more to come from this colt as he was still green in victory. Two star** win @ 5/1 with PP.

These are two promising colts but the value is with the Haggas horse.

 

3.05 Great Voltiguer C2 12F 3yo colts

Often seen as THE St. Leger trial but quite a few here won’t be running at Doncaster. Idaho is the class act having been placed it both the English and Irish Derbies but is this son of Galileo a winner? The field of just six could prove awkward. Will there be any pace and who will set it?

Across the Stars won the G3 Edward VII Stakes, the Royal Ascot “Derby”, with a “short of room” HousesofParliament back in fourth. HousesofParliament went onto win the other recognised St. Leger trial, the G3 Bahrain Trophy, with Harrison back in third. Meanwhile The Major General was second and Harrison unplaced in the Group 3 Gordon Stakes behind Ulysses, a stablemate of Across the Stars. The ground will be quicker than most of these have encountered and so the form is tight and there are plenty of questions to be answered.

ACROSS THE STARS  After his win at Ascot his trainer, Sir Michael Stoute, said ““He can be a little impetuous, but he’s growing up. He’s a big horse with a lot of developing to do, physically and mentally. We’ve always liked him and I liked the way he battled. He’s a good-actioned horse and a good athlete and he’ll get stronger. We paid a lot of money for him and he’s justified it now. He’s run to a pretty good standard today. I would doubt he’ll stay the St Leger trip – I would say that is highly unlikely. We’ll stop and think (about plans). There’s no hurry.”

Quite willing to take on Idaho. Across the Stars two star** win @ 7/2 general.

 

3.40 JUDDMONTE INTERNATIONAL G1 10F

Delighted to see thirteen going to post although King Bolete is probably a pacemaker. Postponed is unbeaten in his last five and currently 6/4 favourite and the race revolves round him. Play or lay?

RP Aug. 5thPostponed has been pleasing trainer Roger Varian in his work and will bid to add to his tally on the Knavesmire. “Postponed wasn’t 100 per cent before the King George, so he didn’t run,” Varian said. “I’m happy with him now and he’s on course to run at York. Winning a Group 1 over a mile and a quarter with him is a big objective. If he could win one it would certainly add to his CV.” A tilt at the 1m2f Qipco Champion Stakes at Ascot in October is not part of Postponed’s plan this year and he was not among the entries published on Wednesday. “He’s more likely to contest the Arc,” Varian added. “There are lots of ifs and buts about possible races after that, but he could go to the Breeders’ Cup.” I think there are enough reasons to take him on. Is Postponed better over 12F than this 10F? He hasn’t been seen since the Coronation Cup in June at Epsom, is he race fit? Has he fully recovered from the respiratory infection that kept him off the track? The last time Postponed ran on Good to Firm ground he was third to Snow Sky. Eleven horses are willing to take Postponed and so am I. But who with?

The ground is against My Dream Boat and possibly Sir Isaac Newton and Wings of Desire. Further would be preferable for Highland Reel and shorter for Mutakayyef. Almodovar, Arab Spring, Dariyan, Exosphere and The Grey Gatsby are Group 2 at best.

So am I going to put forward the improving HAWKBILL for the resurgent “Boys in Blue”. The best all aged 10F race so far was the Eclipse at Sandown and Hawkbill was impressive in beating the unfortunate The Ghurka. Unbeaten in six, the worry is the ground but Hawkbill has an American pedigree which gives me hope. One star* win @ 5/1 with PP.

 

4.20 Fine Equity Handicap 16F 81-100

The Irish have taken a liking to this race in recent years. Rennetti trained by the all-conquering Willie Mullins and ridden by Pat Smullen will surely be popular in the market but I think the horse has his own ideas about the game, talented but with attitude. If he gets the trip the bottom weight, Repeater, could be a player especially as he has a serious claiming jockey aboard in Killian Leonard. Eshtiaal for Gordon Elliott is a better hurdler and Modem is too often a nearly horse.

I am going to back two here. SAVED BY THE BELL represents the O’Meara/Tudhope combo and runs this track and trip better than anywhere else. He may not win but the 18/1 available is cracking each way value.

I am going to trust Jamie Spencer to weave his magic on LIFE LESS ORDINARY who steps up in trip and grade having shown good form at 12 & 14F at C4.

Saved by the Bell one star* each way @ 20/1 with PP.

Life Less Ordinary two star** each way @ 14/1 with Coral.

4.55 Betway Nursery 2yo 6F handicap

A 6F twenty runner Nursery is certainly no getting out stakes!!

Richard Fahey runs three and they are all of interest. SPIN DOCTOR OR83 Drawn 7. Won on debut and was last seen in the G3 Albany at Royal Ascot, maybe a tad too high in the weights. NAVARONE OR80 Drawn 11 Run well on all three starts and a handicapper in the making. This may be a step too far at this stage of his career. Steps back a furlong. THE WAGON WHEEL OR73 Drawn 6 Now this the filly is of interest. The Musley Bank dogs were certainly barking when this young lady made her debut. She answered every call and although winning cosily looked to have plenty left. She could be thrown in here on OR73 with Patrick Mathers carrying just 8st 3lbs. One star* win @ 15/2 with PP.

I will also have a financial interest in NAAFER. The combination of Haggas and Hanagan is tempting enough but his form is solid, including a course win, and at Goodwood last time he really travelled from a dreadful draw and as long as the low draw bias in 2016 hasn’t continued (see 1.55 above) he must have every chance. One star* win @ 9/1 with Coral.

 

Now I’ve written my piece let’s see what #FantasticMrFahey has said to sportinglife.com.

I gotta Feeling August 16 2016, 14:48 BST

I have to start the column by mentioning Ribchester’s win in the Prix Jacques Le Marois at Deauville on Sunday. It was a great day for everyone here at Musley Bank, we’ve long thought he was a proper Group One horse and it was fantastic to see him win a big one – and win it well too. He’s come out of the race brilliantly, he’s really taken his racing very well this year. I’ll need to speak to John Ferguson but the plan before France was to go straight to the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes at Ascot and I imagine it still will be. He’s an absolute star and it’s very exciting to think the plan looks to be to keep him training at four too.

Moving onto our York team for Wednesday and Arctic Feeling is first up in the Symphony Group Stakes. The handicapper has finally started to give him a bit of a chance but while he’d appreciate any rain, I can’t see it in the forecast. This is a typical sprint handicap, any one of 15 could win it, and I just hope things fall right for my fellow. We’ve three in the closing Betway Stakes. Navarone is bred to stay but we don’t think he got home over seven furlongs last time so the drop back to six here will suit and we’ll see what happens. Spin Doctor is a filly we liked a lot and we took her to Royal Ascot as a result but she was very disappointing in the Albany Stakes. We’ve given her a break since but she’s back in good form at home again and we’re hoping she bounces back. The Wagon Wheel did well to win over five furlongs on debut at Beverley and this is more her trip. If she’s tough and savvy enough for a race like this on her second start then she should be competitive. If she runs as green as she did the last day she’ll struggle but that experience wasn’t lost on her.

#startracking Saturday August 13th 11am

So do you want the bad news, the bad news or perhaps the bad news?

Tatlisu runs in the Great St Wilfred at Ripon and he’s drawn in stall 5, yippee! However all the pace is in the big numbers and for some reason the hapless Keagan Latham has been booked to ride him when Adam MacNamara (Robert Cowell), Jack Garritty (Henry Candy) and George Chaloner (Robert Whitaker, regular pilot) are riding for outside yards! No wonder the recommended Ante Post 20/1 looks a bit sick with 33/1 available with WH this morning!

Forever Popular, my improving filly trained by William Haggas and a 66/1 steal for the Ebor next Saturday runs at Deauville tomorrow in the G3 12F fillies Prix Minerve with Christophe Soumillon in the plate. There’s another tenner I can kiss goodbye to!

Anyway let’s have a look at today.

Ripon “The Yorkshire track has more humps and bumps than a BMX circuit and is a venue that doesn’t suit all horses. Course form is worth its weight in gold.” AWJ Weekender 12/8

Ripon 3.25                  REX IMPERATOR Races at 7F but wins at 6F. No issue with the ground, drawn in 12, in cracking form, just needs a racing seam. David Nolan rides for David O’Meara (Tudhope is in the US for Mondialiste) and the yard now looks like it’s got its act together. Two star** win @ 13/2 with BetFred and WH.

Ripon 3.55                  TATLISU Blog Weds. 9th August 12noon  “OR94 It will be no surprise to regular readers of this blog that I have been waiting for THIS horse in THIS race! He has run third in this race for the past two years, he’s never run a bad race at Ripon, he is currently three pounds below his last winning mark and this is his time of the year. TATLISU is a two star** each way ANTE Post selection @ 20/1 (General).

On Thursday lunchtime I will go in again if he gets in, has a single figure draw and especially if Adam MacNamara is on board taking off another 5lbs. Drawn close to Kimberella, Related or both would be a bonus.” Nightmare jockey booking in Keagan Latham but got to go in again one star* win @ 33/1 with WH. Fool and his money etc.etc.

Ripon 3.55                  NUNO TRISTAN Blog Weds. 9th August 12noon “OR94 Along with Growl he has been a useful addition to the #FantasticMrFahey sprinting squad. Both bought astutely for Dr K at last season’s Horses in Training Sales. As in form as any in the yard, winning at Redcar over 7F, fifth in the 7F C2 International at Ascot and a running on third in the Stewards Cup Consolation at Goodwood back at 6F. First look at Ripon off a career high mark is a big ask and I’m not sure Good to Firm ground brings out the best of him, especially over 6F. I expect Tony Hamilton to choose him.” Ground has eased to Good, he’s drawn near the pace and the race could be set up for him! One star* win @ 10/1 with WH.

Newbury 3.40            VALLEY OF FIRE The notebook says “I am going to wait until he is down to OR90 in a C3 over 7F.” Well here he is at Newbury off OR86 in a C3 7F handicap and as a bonus for a hold up horse Jamie Spencer takes the ride. One star* each way @ 14/1 general.

Newbury 4.10            HOME OF THE BRAVE Yet to win a Group 2 but beat main rival, Convey, a neck in a G3. 7F trip is ideal and has winning form on quick ground. No Gifted Master this time so will probably be able to set his own fractions and not many jockeys riding better than Jim Crowley. The issue is whether 6/4 represents value? Not for me, Watching Brief.

Doncaster 3.45           GET KNOTTED I hope I haven’t missed the party here but this is an improving handicapper who enjoys quick ground and I thought may have been a player in the big 8F handicap at York next Thursday. The fact he turns up here is enough to persuade me to have one star* each way @ 11/1 with WH.

Doncaster 4.20           LATHOM Simply a winner waiting to happen for the O’Meara yard. Josh Doyle takes off a useful 5lb and will hopefully get going early enough to win this. Two star ** win @ 11/2 with WH.

Doncaster 4.50           FIDAAWY This is a Group horse. His education is just taking a bit of time, needs to mentally mature, he has the engine. Can’t let him go unbacked. Two star** win @ 6/5 general.

Newmarket 3.20        PROJECTION Really wanted to back this eye catcher but 9/4 for a top weight in a 13 runner 3yo sprint handicap is too short. Watching Brief.

Newmarket 3.20        PADDY POWER Wrote in the Notebook a couple of races back that this is just the sort of race here at HQ, 6F 3yo handicap, that this rogue might at last show what he promises on the gallops every morning. We’ll roll the dice, one star* each way @ 16/1.

Three Shorties

Newbury 2.30            ESCOBAR Hugo Palmer 2yo going places.

Newbury 3.05            KINGS FETE Ideal race with limited opposition and Pat Smullen rides.

Doncaster 3.10           SOUNDSTRINGS Loads of improvement on last run.

#FantasticMrFahey

Word of caution. #FantasticMrFahey has withdrawn Powerallied and Pushkin Museum at Newmarket as both are “off colour”. With York’s Ebor meeting starting on Wednesday let’s hope it’s not the whole yard “off colour”!

#FantasticMrFahey sportinglife.com article Friday August 12th.

I’m really looking forward to running Ribchester in Sunday’s Prix Jacques Le Marois at Deauville. Obviously it’s a rematch with Galileo Gold who beat us in the Sussex Stakes but my colt has come out of Goodwood very well. We’ve always thought he was a proper Group One horse, which he proved the last day, now the aim is to win one.

Everything seems fine on Sunday, the track and ground will suit, and he’s in great order. William Buick rides and we’re going there in good shape.

Before then we’ll try to win the William Hill Great St Wilfrid Stakes at Ripon for the third time in four years. We run three this time. Alben Star was very disappointing in the Stewards’ Cup at Glorious Goodwood. Paul Hanagan said he travelled well and everything was spot on but the horse just didn’t pick up. I’m just wondering whether he was a little rusty after a break as he went there fit but sometimes sprinters need to be competitive to give them their edge. We’re happy with him at home. We felt Nuno Tristan was a little unlucky not to win the consolation race at Goodwood. That said he ran a good solid race there and is sure to run another here. He’s in great form. Tatlisu completes the team and is a funny horse. He’s one who runs himself into form and was third in the race last year. We know he handles the track and he’s well handicapped if at his best but I’m a fraction worried about the draw as he’s in five which may not be the place to be.

We run four in the consolation race, the William Hill Silver Trophy Handicap. George Bowen is flying at home. He never rose a gallop in Ireland last time for some reason and we’re trying him in blinkers here. He’s working extremely well but is another drawn low, six, and that is a worry. Grandad’s World has fared a little better in nine and might just be running into a little bit of form. He’s handicapped to run well. We’ve also stuck a pair of blinkers on Patrick who has just gone a little old fashioned on us. We worked him in them this week and he pleased us but he’s drawn three which is the worry. Khelman is a star of a horse and any rain would help him. I just wonder if the course will suit him as much as some of the others though.

You can put Right Action‘s run at Doncaster last time down to trainer error. I ran him over seven furlongs and he just did too much. The drop back to six will suit in the CHS Vehicles Maiden Auction Stakes and he has a big chance if handling the track – something not every horse does there. We introduce Hint Of A Smile in the same race. She’s quite a nice filly, we like her, and she’s ready to run. I’d be a little surprised if she finished in front of the colt here on debut but she’ll win races.

Island Flame has had a good season. She runs in the British Stallion Studs EBF Fillies’ Handicap which looks competitive but my horse continues to run well and further rain wouldn’t bother her.

I thought Theos Lolly ran well at Goodwood last time considering the terrible draw he had. The William Hill Download The App Handicap represents a slight drop in grade for him, Adan McNamara is claiming five pounds off and he must have a solid chance.

So would my two runners in the Ridgeons Fillies’ Nursery at Newmarket. Lady In Question ran alright at Goodwood the last day, we were pleased enough with her there, and she’s entitled to be in the shake-up here. Clef is very tough and genuine and I think the step up to seven furlongs might just help her. If she stays she’d have a big chance.

Pushkin Museum is such a disappointing horse. I’m at the stage now where I don’t know what his trip is or how to ride him. He is extremely well handicapped if we can get him back on track but it’s proving difficult. We keep trying in the Pantile Stud Grey Horse Handicap.

We’re double handed in the C J Murfitt Ltd Handicap. Powerallied, in all honestly, is probably better on slower ground around Chester but this is a £45,000 pot and he’s entitled to have a go. I’ve said it before in this column but Paddy Power is such a frustrating horse. His work at home is of the highest order but he’s not delivered on the track. I think the step up to six furlongs will help him here, he remains in good order, but really needs to get his act together.

Our final three runners are at Doncaster. Show Me The Music makes her debut in the Betfred TV EBF Stallions Maiden Fillies’ Stakes. She’s quite a nice filly, and a well-bred one too being by Dubawi. She’s a little laid back and the run won’t be lost on her. She’s sure to win a maiden at some stage but whether it will be at the first time of asking, I wouldn’t be sure.

Farlow won the Betfred ‘Be Part Of The Action’ Handicap last season and goes well at the track. However I do feel he’s become badly handicapped. If he were to win it again I’d be thrilled and we’re taking seven pounds off with Natalie Hambling’s claim.

She also rides Ingleby Spring in the Betfred ‘Like Us On Facebook’ Apprentice Handicap having won on her at Epsom. She was suited by the step up to this ten furlongs trip that day and I hope she’ll go well again.

Great St Wilfred C2 6F Handicap Ripon

Great St Wilfred C2 6F Handicap Ripon August 13th 2016

Weds. 9th August 12noon

 

As cavalry charges go this one is right up with the best. Ripon is a unique track with its undulations (“more than your average BMX course”!) that doesn’t suit every horse, they will split into two groups on either rail with nothing coming up the middle and this prize is much sought after by Northern trainers.

None more so than #FantasticMrFahey but as you can see from his entries below he hasn’t got a Don’t Touch in here this year! Indeed his senior sprinters are running poorly, probably paying for last season’s success with the handicapper slow to relent.

071880                  Alben Star                           14           8                              Richard Fahey                    100        85           100

556153                  Nuno Tristan                      14           4                              Richard Fahey                    94          93           100

70480                    Tatlisu                                   21           6                              Richard Fahey                    94          67           100

6-0680                   George Bowen                 28           4                              Richard Fahey                    93          94           104

09020                    Grandad´s World              14           4                              Richard Fahey                    87          85           93

0-1803                   Khelman                              44           6                              Richard Fahey                    85          77           91

020800                  Patrick                                  21           4                              Richard Fahey                    86          76           86

I would expect Alben Star, Nuno Tristan, Tatlisu and George Bowen all to run in the main event, because they can, with the other three in the Consolation.

Betting Weds. Aug. 9th  11/1 Nuno Tristan (WH), 14/1 Alben Star (General), 20/1 George Bowen (BetFred, WH). 20/1 Tatlisu (General).

ALBEN STAR OR100 The 8yo has been a grand servant for the yard but hasn’t won on Turf for four years! Run twice over C&D finishing 7th and 8th, indeed 5/1F for this race in 2012. Just can’t see him troubling the judge.

GEORGE BOWEN OR93 Previewing the season I wrote Hugely likeable 6F sprinter who went from winning a C3 handicap at Wolverhampton off 85 to running second in the Ayr Silver Cup off 96, winning at Newmarket and the Curragh on the way. The Ayr Gold Cup would seem a logical target and it wouldn’t surprise me to see him tried over further. He appreciates Soft ground and I expect him to land a C2 handicap pot and possibly a Listed race and even Group level towards the end of the season.”

Just hasn’t had his conditions this season, a couple of duff draws, a few traffic issues, but has come down 6lbs in the process. Connections will be praying for a wet Ayr, possibly the Silver Cup and anything else they can get when the rain comes!!

NUNO TRISTAN OR94 Along with Growl he has been a useful addition to the #FantasticMrFahey sprinting squad. Both bought astutely for Dr K at last season’s Horses in Training Sales. As in form as any in the yard, winning at Redcar over 7F, fifth in the 7F C2 International at Ascot and a running on third in the Stewards Cup Consolation at Goodwood back at 6F. First look at Ripon off a career high mark is a big ask and I’m not sure Good to Firm ground brings out the best of him, especially over 6F. I expect Tony Hamilton to choose him.

TATLISU OR94 It will be no surprise to regular readers of this blog that I have been waiting for THIS horse in THIS race! He has run third in this race for the past two years, he’s never run a bad race at Ripon, he is currently three pounds below his last winning mark and this is his time of the year.

TATLISU is a two star** each way ANTE Post selection @ 20/1 (General).

On Thursday lunchtime I will go in again if he gets in, has a single figure draw and especially if Adam MacNamara is on board taking off another 5lbs. Drawn close to Kimberella, Related or both would be a bonus.

 

Stats up to 2015. (Don’t Touch was a freak 3yo 2016 winner)

Winners have been aged four (4), five (3), six (2) and seven.

Winners have carried between 8-7 and 9-6.

Winners have been rated between 80 and 100 with nine between 92 and 100 (including the last nine).

Winners have been priced between 7/2 and 20/1 with eight returned between 7/2 and 16/1.

Three favourites have been successful with a further two placed.

Winners have been drawn between 2 and 17 with nine between 2 and 12.

Five winners have been placed on their previous start with one successful.

Six winners had won a race during the current season.

Nine winners had won a race with a field size of at least 14.

Three winners ran in the Stewards’ Cup and three in the Sky Bet Dash at York.

David O’Meara has trained three of the last five winners while David Nicholls has trained two winners.

#startracking Thursday 4th August 5pm

Already a few horses that catch my eye from Saturdays cards at Haydock and Newmarket. I’m unable to punt at Ascot on the Shergar Cup, which is loads of fun and very watchable, because much as I admire the class of jockey on show they rarely know the horse and there is always the possibility of team orders. No wonder the trainers like the concept, C2 handicaps with £22K to the winner and only 12 runners!

 

Top of the Saturday List include

Newmarket 4.25        FARLOW                            (Richard Fahey) OR99 He maybe an 8yo but he’ still retains plenty of ability. He runs the 7F at Newmarket very well and he just needs to be close enough in The Dip to make his late surge count. His last visit was most encouraging when 6th beaten less than two lengths. He has top weight here but for a reason and seems to have seasoned handicappers in opposition as opposed to any obvious improvers.

Haydock 2.00             PICK YOUR CHOICE    (William Haggas) OR91 Lightly raced 4yo who could start to repay The Queens patience. George Baker has the ride and could this race be a stepping stone to the Clipper Logistics handicap at York in a fortnight’s time or the Cambridgeshire long term? 8F is fine but this will probably be the quickest ground he has encountered.

Haydock 4.15             ABDON                       (Sir Michael Stoute) OR102 Just had the three career runs, winning his 2yo maiden, runner up to Hawkbill in a Listed 3yo 10F contest at Newmarket on 3yo debut before failing to step forward in the G3 10F Tercentenary at Royal Ascot. Notebook said “Been given a tough opening OR102. Suggests it will be Listed and above, 10F+” so a little surprised to see him in a handicap, albeit a good one. Andrea Atzeni rides and he’s 3 from 6 for Stoute this year.

Haydock 4.15             GERSCHWIN               (David Lanigan) OR98 Trainer David Lanigan is convinced this a Group horse and last time out at Ascot looked a handicap snip off OR93, went clear at the furlong pole but got mowed down by the Group class Move Up. Now up 5lb to OR98 and has a few questions to answer.

Haydock 4.45             CANYARI                     (Richard Fahey) OR78 To make Canyari a bet we will have to be fairly forgiving as his form on paper this season looks awful. However this time last season he was running in the Stewards Cup Consolation having won at Leicester and Doncaster off OR79 and OR85. In 2016 he started off on OR86 and was OK at Doncaster and York within four lengths of the winner. Bad draw and hung at Haydock, up to 7F at Catterick drawn 1, slow to gather pace and was on the rail at the rear and behind the eight ball, didn’t handle the bends either! Then sent off 7/1 third favourite at York despite being drawn 19 of 19 he had no chance.

Now down to OR78 he has a 6f Haydock win on his CV and Andrea Atzeni is an unusual jockey booking, I from 3 in the last five seasons. Just nine runners here and Barkston Ash to set the race up. Strong fancy just a niggling doubt the horse may have gone at the game but he’s only a 5yo and this is his level.

 

#startrackingWednesdayAugust3rd 12.15pm

Sorry I have been quiet on the blogging front recently but I am deep into research for York’s Ebor meeting (my favourite four days on the flat) and that has involved trawling the net for owners/trainers saying York is the plan. Of course getting constantly side-lined is part of the fun!!

Here are some bits and pieces I found on the way that I found interesting and hope you do as well! Especially the Frankel piece!

 

“…there’s a bit of coughing going around in Newmarket at the moment…” James Fanshawe on sportinglife.com Aug. 2nd

Paul Smith, son of part-owner Derrick Smith, said: “I think the ground is important. As we’ve seen with War Fronts, it’s important they get good ground.”

 

Don’t forget your Jersey Ian Ogg Sporting Life August 2nd

“Hugo Palmer was also annoyed at the defeat of Home Of The Brave who “ran with the choke out all the way” and he was left hoping that he won’t have to run Home Of The Brave and Lennox Stakes third Gifted Master against each other again. He did add that he was “delighted with how they have run” and the latter gave some sort of boost to the form of the Jersey Stakes having only finished ninth at Royal Ascot – indeed, that Group Three contest was seen to the fore throughout the week. The winner, Ribchester, ran a blinder in the Sussex Stakes and may well have gone closer still granted a little more luck in running while Ascot second and third, Thikriyaat and Forge, filled the first two places in the Thoroughbred Stakes. The former was a snug winner but the second also deserves credit as he was noticeably coltish in the pre-parade ring, whinnying and paying little attention to the day job. The eighth home from the Jersey, Raucous, has reverted to sprinting since but followed up his third in the Hackwood Stakes by filling the same position in the Stewards’ Cup. It’s a race that could continue to pay to follow and while the likes of fifth, sixth and seventh home – Remarkable, Castle Harbour and Haalick are of obvious interest – don’t ignore some of those that finished further back such as the lightly raced C Note who could relish a return to racing on softer ground this autumn and pick up a decent handicap.”

Racing UK Thoroughbred Stakes report “Former high-class juvenile Emotionless took the field along for much of the one-mile journey, with both Paul Hanagan aboard Thikriyaat and Forge‘s rider Ryan Moore biding their time. Moore kept out of trouble, delivering his challenge on the outside of the field, while Hanagan was briefly caught in a pocket before the gap came. The stablemates picked up almost as one in the final furlong and it was Thikriyaat who got the better of the argument by half a length. Hanagan said: “He does just enough, really. I had to really sit and suffer on him, but he’s got such a lovely temperament – he loves to please. In time, you’ll see him step up in trip. Without doubt he’ll get further.” Stoute said of the winner: “He’s very tough and honest and consistent – he’s a very admirable horse. I think he’ll get a bit further than that (a mile).”

Of the runner-up, the Newmarket handler added: “He’s a nice horse in the making.”

 

“…the list of Gordon Stakes winners is pretty impressive too. It’s the winner of that race, Ulysses, that I’m most excited about, even if we’re going to have to wait until next year to see the best of the brilliantly-bred colt.” Ian Ogg Sporting Life August 2nd

 

Sunday 31 July 2016 Racing UK

Foundation could have his first start since he underwent a gelding operation on Saturday after connections earmarked a likely assault on the Betfred Rose of Lancaster Stakes at Haydock. The John Gosden-trained three-year-old, winner of the Group Two Royal Lodge Stakes at Newmarket last season, underwent the procedure after he finished last in the French Derby at Chantilly in June. Harry Herbert, spokesman for owners Highclere Thoroughbred Racing, said: “We have gelded Foundation as he was very shouty in France and he ran no sort of race.The plan is to run him in the Rose of Lancaster and to take it one step at a time with him.”

Also in contention for the Group Two on Merseyside is the Sir Michael Stoute-trained Arab Spring. The six-year-old, winner of the 2014 Duke of Edinburgh Stakes at Royal Ascot, has not been seen since finishing second in last year’s Brigadier Gerard Stakes at Sandown. Stoute said: “I am hoping to run Arab Spring in the Rose of Lancaster. He has had a series of setbacks and that is the story of his life.”

 

TOP 2yo’s 2016

SOUTH SEASAndrew Balding looking towards Solario date with South Seas Sunday 24 July 2016

Andrew Balding is contemplating stepping the unbeaten South Seas up in both trip and class for next month’s Solario Stakes at Sandown. Although plans are yet to be firmed up for the two-year-old, the Kingsclere handler has earmarked the seven-furlong Group Three contest as a potential target. After bolting up by eight lengths over six furlongs on his debut at Windsor, the son of Lope De Vega sidestepped an outing in the Superlative Stakes at Newmarket’s July Festival on account of quick ground. The Qatar Racing-owned colt made it two wins from as many starts when taking a novice event over the same trip at Haydock earlier this month. Balding said: “We might look at the Solario with South Seas. At this stage he does not want fast ground, he will handle it at some stage in his career but it doesn’t have to be this year. He will probably only have a couple more runs this year so we will pick and choose where he goes.”

SEVEN HEAVENS – Seven Heavens team bide their time Monday 25 July 2016

John Gosden has no fixed target as yet for his exciting Frankel colt Seven Heavens. The youngster, who is out of Cheveley Park’s Group Three-winning mare Heaven Sent, was an impressive winner at Ascot on his debut. He held entries at both Ascot and Newmarket last weekend but Gosden chose to bide his time. What makes Seven Heavens slightly unique is that he was a rare youngster purchased at the sales by Khalid Abdullah, with Frankel’s owner going to 620,000 guineas at Tattersalls last October.

“He’s in good form, we’re just considering our options,” said Teddy Grimthorpe, Abdullah’s racing manager. John wasn’t keen on him running at the weekend, he thought it might just come a little too soon. He came out of his race well and we were very pleased with him. Frankie (Dettori) rode him last week in a piece of work and was pretty pleased with him. We’ll just take him as we find him.”

 

CHURCHILL – Derby favourite Churchill digs deep to take Tyros Stakes Racing UK Thursday 21 July 2016

Churchill had to battle to justify his short price in the Japan Racing Association Tyros Stakes at Leopardstown.

Ante-post favourite for the Investec Derby after his Chesham Stakes success at Royal Ascot, the Aidan O’Brien-trained winner was given a real fright by the once-raced Alexios Komnenos on his outside from the furlong pole.

But in the end the 2-5 market leader dug deep for Ryan Moore to prevail by a neck from the Tommy Stack-trained runner-up, adding his name to a roll of honour that includes the likes of Gleneagles, Rip Van Winkle, New Approach and Teofilo among others. RaceBets left Churchill unchanged at 16-1 joint-favourite for Epsom and 8-1 second-favourite for the 2000 Guineas.

O’Brien said: “When he gets there he’s very babyish and green. We saw that at Ascot. He’s a little immature still. He got there very easily, but the other horse challenged wide and Ryan said he didn’t see him until late. I was delighted with the way he travelled through the race.” He went on: “We always thought he was very good. He had a nice run when third at the Curragh and we obviously saw what he did in Ascot. We were a little worried in Ascot as they went slow and he got there early and was green. He got to the front today and waited again. I think the Futurity is where we will go now.”

 

GENERAL MACARTHUR – Racing UK Thursday 21 July 2016

Sharing favouritism for the Derby is Churchill’s stablemate Douglas Macarthur, after he banished the memory of a disappointing first run in the Frank Conroy EBF Maiden. The full-brother to 2012 Oaks heroine Was never a factor when backed as if defeat was out of the question on his introduction, but his supporters kept the faith and sent him off at 9-10. In contrast to that debut, he bowled along happily at the head of affairs and Moore did not have to get too serious for him to see off World War by five lengths. O’Brien said: “We’re very happy with that. The reason we let him roll on was because he was so green last time and needed to learn. Even today at the road he landed in the middle of it and he’s still a baby. In an ideal world he’d have a run or two more before next year. His mind is still sleeping but we knew he had a massive engine. He would have learned a lot today. We knew he had a big engine as he was doing very good things. We were taken a little aback by how green he was. We’ll look at the Beresford or the Golden Fleece for him. I’d like to give him a little bit of time. He’s still very babyish.”

 

APEX KING – Apex King rules at Ascot on ‘emotional’ day for Eddery family  RacingUK Saturday 23 July 2016

Apex King emerged victorious after a thrilling climax to the Wooldridge Group Pat Eddery Stakes at Ascot. The Ed Dunlop-trained juvenile finished down the field on his Leicester debut at the end of May and though he appeared much improved when scoring on his second start at Newmarket last month, he was a 12-1 shot stepped up in grade.

Andrea Atzeni settled his mount in midfield before angling wide to throw down his challenge in the last of seven furlongs. Apex King responded gamely, coming home best to deny the front-running Monticello by a neck.

The runner-up ran a fine race in defeat, but came up narrowly short in his hat-trick bid, with his stable companion, Frankuus, a close third. Dunlop said: “He’ll never run over that trip again as he wants a mile now. He did exactly what he did at Newmarket, but beat better class horses this time. All being well, subject to the owner’s approval, he’ll go for the Royal Lodge (Newmarket, September 24). I think he’s shown he goes on any ground.”

 

Ten unraced Frankel progeny to look out for over the months ahead Racing UK Andy Stephens Sat. 23 July

1: ERDOGAN (Bay colt with John Gosden)

Bought by Sheikh Joaan al‑Thani’s Al Shaqab Racing for 750,000gns at Tattersalls at Newmarket in October, when the auctioneer kept referring to him as “The Magnificent Frankel”. The colt’s dam is Dar Re Mi, the triple Group One winner who herself was trained by John Gosden. There has been a real buzz about this youngster and his debut is keenly anticipated.

2: LA FIGLIA (Chestnut filly with William Haggas) “We just wanna make the world dance, forget about the price tag,” sang Jesse J in her pop ditty Price Tag from 2011, which was in the top 20 when Frankel won the 2,000 Guineas. No doubt William Haggas would like everybody to forget about the price tag of La Figlia, but there is no escaping that Australian entrepreneur Paul Makin smashed the Irish foal record when paying €1.8 million for her in 2014. She is a daughter of Finsceal Beo, the runaway Prix Marcel Boussac winner of 2006 who the following year won the English and Irish 1,000 Guineas.

3: NOTHING BUT DREAMS (bay filly with Roger Varian) Just how good could a filly sired by Frankel out of an Prix De l’Arc De Triomphe winner be? Well, over the months ahead we are going to find out, because Nothing But Dreams has a famous mum in German-trained Danedream, the five-length winner of winner of the Arc in 2011 who came to British shores to land the King George the following summer. She ended her career with rating of 128. Nothing But Dreams is her first foal so may be on the small side (the first offspring of dams generally are) but, in her favour, she was an early foal (January 27).

4: FINCHE (chestnut colt with Andre Fabre) Naming racehorses can be a delicate process and sometimes there are a multitude of hidden reasons behind the process. However, in this instance it seems pretty basic. Finche is a product of Frankel and Binche. It is no great surprise he has been sent to Fabre because he has trained Binche’s best offspring – Byword (winner of the 2010 Prince of Wales’s Stakes) and Proviso, although the latter enjoyed her biggest days in America after leaving him.

5: AMSER (bay filly with Andre Fabre) A March 1 daughter of Clepsydra, who managed one win from six starts and ended her career rated 75. However, the daughter of Sadler’s Wells has been a revelation as a broodmare – producing seven winners including Timepiece (won Falmouth Stakes in 2011), Passage Of Time (Group One winner), Father Time (won King Edward VII Stakes in 2007) and Continuum (rated 98 at peak).

6: MORI (Bay filly with Sir Michael Stoute) A daughter of the mighty Midday, a seven-time Group One winner. A month after she was born, Juddmonte Stud Manager Simon Mockridge said: “Attractive, quality filly. Has size and scope. Deep girthed, broad hips, strong quartered. Good bone. Strong hind leg. Very good foal.”

7: AURORA GOLD (Bay filly with John Gosden) John Gosden has already struck with two Frankels – Cunco and Seven Heavens – and will no doubt be disappointed if this daughter of Midsummer, who was the dam of Midday, does not add to the tally. Her other offspring have included Hot Snap, a Group Three winner.

8: MIRAGE DANCER (bay colt with Sir Michael Stoute) Will hopefully fare better than the Mirage Dancer who began his career in the 1980s and ended up winning four modest races over jumps from 63 starts. On that subject, will we ever see a Frankel over obstacles? What a thought. This Mirage Dancer is a daughter of Heat Haze, which means his grandam is the exceptional Hasili – also dam of Champs Eysees, Banks Hill, Intercontinental, Cacique and Dansili.

9: OCCURRENCE (bay filly by Arrive with Roger Charlton) The Charlton stable already one piece of Frankel hot property in Fair Eva – could Occurrence be another? She is a daughter of Arrive (sired by Derby winner Kahyasi) and has two excellent offspring to her name – the Group One-winning Promising Lead and Visit, who was trained by Bobby Frankel, the man the equine great is named after.

10: GOLDRUSH (bay filly with Jim Bolger) There have been a few horses christened Goldrush or Gold Rush over the years, none of them superstars. Then again, none of them were a mix between Alexander Goldrun and Frankel. Alexander Goldrun was a five-time Group One winner over a mile and a quarter, although she has yet to shine in the paddocks. This filly was foaled on March 1.

 

TIMELINE OF FRANKEL’S OFFSPRING IN BRITAIN FORM READS 16111335141210311

May 13: Cunco (7-2) wins a 6f maiden on at Newbury.

May 27: Majoris (13-2) is a staying-on sixth at Haydock.

June 3: Queen Kindly (2-5) scores easily over 5f at Catterick.

June 8: Fair Eva (evens) routs the opposition in a novice event at Haydock.

June 9: Frankuus (4-1) wins a novice stakes over 7f at Haydock.

June 17: Queen Kindly (7-2) is half a length third in the Group Three Albany Stakes at Royal Ascot.

June 18: Cunco (7-2) is third in the Listed Chesham Stakes at Royal Ascot. Frankuus (15-2) is fifth in the same race.

July 5: Majoris (5-6) takes a 7f maiden at Brighton.

July 9: Cunco (7-2) finishes fourth in the Group Two bet365 Superlative Stakes at Newmarket. On the same day Toulifaut (7-5), one of his daughters, trained by Jean-Claude Rouget, won a 7f fillies’ maiden at Clairefontaine. On the same card, one of his sons, Last Kingdom, finished second.

July 13: Queen Kindly wins at 1-16 in a minor event at Catterick. Frankel was 1-20 for his second Sussex win!

July 16: Lightening Fast (5-2), trained by Ger Lyons, is Frankel’s first runner in Ireland. Slow away and eighth of 13.

July 23: Frankuus (11-2) keeps on stoutly to finish half a length third in a 7f Listed race at Ascot. In the next race, Fair Eva romps home by four lengths in the Group Three Princess Margaret Stakes and is slashed to as low as 4-1 for the 1,000 Guineas.

July 27: Richard Fahey’s Senator (13-8) gets up late on over six furlongs on his debut at Leicester after trading at 43-1 in-running.

#startracking Saturday July 30th 11.45am

A busy Saturday and loads to consider and at last a few at Glorious Goodwood to get stuck into! Mind you I’m going to put up a few on The Downs from high draws (If they’re good enough the draw won’t matter?) but my head says on four days of evidence you need a low draw not to mention a truck load of luck and a one eyed steward!!

#startracking Bets Summary

Goodwood 2.00         GAMESOME Became a bit of a cliff horse last season but new trainer Paul Midgely seems to have sweetened him up, he’s run well the last twice and has a winning chance here. My notebook says “The current owners paid £75K to get this classy 6F sprinter from the Olly Stevens yard. Came to my attention when desperately unlucky in last year’s Stewards Cup. Like the present owners I am optimistic Gamesome can land one of these big 6F sprints this summer. 6F is the trip and Good to Firm is ideal but what he does need is a clear run and a dollop of luck!” Gamesome is a two star** each way selection @ 12/1 general and five places are available.

Goodwood 2.35         MOVE UP Simple. This horse is a Group performer who just does enough. Travels, quickens, stays, professional. Three star*** NAP of the day @ 13/2 with WH.

Goodwood 3.45         HOLD TIGHT I put him up Ante Post over a fortnight ago, now nearly double the price but I’m getting a run! Here’s why Godolphin owned 4yo gelded son of Exceed and Excel. Just had six career starts, he won on debut over 7F at Leicester on Soft ground last October, went straight into a C2 7F handicap on the sand at Lingfield off OR86 finishing second to Crazy Chic, returned to the leafy Surrey venue to win a C3 6F handicap in January. Next seen at Ascot in May for the 7F C2 Victoria Cup and the form book says he finished last of 26. However that doesn’t tell half the story. He was sent off just 8/1 third favourite suggesting he had being doing something at home, he was squeezed for room at the furlong pole and then heavily eased and such a competitive race may have come just a little too soon. His penultimate start was on the Tapeta at Newcastle in a C2 &F handicap when wearing a hood for the first time he kept on well to be second to Miss bossy Boots. Last time out he was sixth at Newmarket to Swift Approval in the C2 7F Silver Bunbury Cup beaten less than three lengths and hooded again sent off 11/4 favourite. With his current OR 97 he is number 36 on the International list and number 46 on the Stewards Cup list. He is 16/1 with Coral and Betfred ¼ 1,2,3,4 for the Stewards Cup at Goodwood and I will suggest a one star* each way Ante Post wager! I could see him at Goodwood most probably in the Stewards Consolation!”

Goodwood 3.45         GROWL I put him up Ante Post over a fortnight ago for the International at Ascot. Instead I waited for this and has Ryan Moore riding. He is a one star* each way selection @ 14/1 with WH + five places.

Here’s why Bought out of the Hannon yard at the end of last season. A useful 2yo, second in a G2, he had rather lost his way as a 3yo. One of four Fahey inmates to run in the C2 6F sprint at Ripon. Had a coming together with stablemate Eccleston out of the stalls which put them at the back of the main group and did well to weave a passage through. Of Fahey’s runners the newcomer to the yard, Growl (OR89), did best. He has some interesting 3yo form, 5L off Limato in a G3 at Ascot! Quicker ground, stiffer track and he could be a player. He won on debut at two but hasn’t won in ten runs since. A nice 0-90 C3 6F on quicker ground could restore confidence. He’s a hold up horse so hopefully Dr K. won’t take him to Chester!! He got his conditions at Leicester and won well, followed it up in good style at Windsor on ground I thought would be too soft for him and then when returned to the big time handicaps ran a cracking fourth in the C2 7F Bunbury Cup on Newmarkets July course on really quick ground. Now rated OR100 he could choose between the 7F International or the 6F Stewards Cup.”

RF to SL “It’s always been in the back of mind that Growl was just the type of horse for this race. I’m worried about his draw in 26 on the other side of the field – people tell me he can’t win from there – but if he hasn’t been beaten by that I think he has a big chance. He’s in great form.”

Goodwood 3.45         SPRING LOADED History tells us that the winner of the Stewards Cup will have run in the Wokingham, had one run since, be 4,5 or 6 years old, no headgear, Official Rating less than 105 and last run 7-22 days ago. Well Paul D’Arcys speedy grey son of Zebedee certainly fits that category and has another three plusses as well. Will relish the Good to Firm going, Frankie Dettori rides and he had been on my radar for the Wokingham but the ground went against him. One star* each way selection at 28/1 with WH, five places.

Goodwood 4.55         STAMP HILL This was top of my list of horses I wanted to back at Goodwood 2016. Could easily be going into this race seeking a hat trick! He runs these downland courses well, will go on the ground, 7F is ideal and I think he has been targeted at this race. What he needs is a hare to run at in the last 100 yards and he is bound to get that here. A really strong traveller and is a two star** each way selection @ 12/1 general although 4 places with Coral.        

RF to SL Stamp Hill is in great form going into the Qatar Stakes and he has been kept fresh for the race. Rain wouldn’t bother him and while he’s wider than ideal in nine – he must have a solid chance.

Newmarket 2.15        ABINGDON Is she running here en route to or instead of the Yorkshire Oaks. Classy filly who has stamina in abundance. Notebook “Ballymacoll Stud homebred filly by Street Cry out of a Galileo mare. Already guaranteed her place in the paddocks and simply could be anything. A filly with a future in middle distance + events, probably at Group level, the likes of the Yorkshire Oaks etc. She is a big girl who has stamina in spades outstaying a field of maidens over 10F at Ascot and then in a Listed race over the same trip at Newbury Abingdon put her size to good use and outstayed them aided by the jolly running a stinker. Both races were on Good to Firm and Soft ground could be an issue however frequent positive gallop reports suggest she works well and I’m happy to back this filly until she is beaten.” The 2/1 with Coral is way too big. Two star** win.

Doncaster 3.30           LAURENCE I thought he should/could have won at Yarmouth last time. In a pocket among horses, got out too late. Trip, ground fine and what is Atzeni doing at Doncaster? Like to see Laurence really finish a race off strongly. Two star** win @ 11/4 general.

#startracking AllTheOthers

RF to SL = #FantasticMrFahey Saturday words on sportinglife.com

Goodwood 2.00         GAMESOME Became a bit of a cliff horse last season but new trainer Paul Midgely seems to have sweetened him up, he’s run well the last twice and has a winning chance here. My notebook says “The current owners paid £75K to get this classy 6F sprinter from the Olly Stevens yard. Came to my attention when desperately unlucky in last year’s Stewards Cup. Like the present owners I am optimistic Gamesome can land one of these big 6F sprints this summer. 6F is the trip and Good to Firm is ideal but what he does need is a clear run and a dollop of luck!” Gamesome is a two star** each way selection @ 12/1 general and five places are available.

Goodwood 2.00         NUNO TRISTAN An in form horse with Jamie Spencer booked to ride. Just think a quick six will be too sharp for him. On my Ayr shortlist! Watching Brief.

RF to SL I’d love to see some rain to slow the race down for Nuno Tristan. He travelled and ran well in the International at Ascot last week and must have a chance again here.

Goodwood 2.00         EL VIENTO Goes well here but not shown anything for a while. Watching Brief.

RF to SL El Viento loves Goodwood – as do his owners – and they have a horse who turns up every year at the meeting. I’d be surprised if he could win a race as competitive as this as an eight-year-old but you’d never draw a line through him either

Goodwood 2.00         GRANDADS WORLD That piece of form where he split Magical Memory and Twilight Son at York is a distant memory although he ran a bit better last time I’ve given up on him! Watching Brief from behind the sofa!

RF to SL If Grandad’s World was back to his best he’d win this. There was a little glimmer he could be on the way back at Nottingham the last day and if he can build on that he’d be another with claims – although it’s very competitive and any one of 15 could win it.

Goodwood 2.00         BALLYMORE CASTLE Like Grandads World he has some excellent form on his record if you go far enough back but I I don’t think even Paul Hanagan can persuade him to put it all in. Retains the cheekpieces! Watching Brief from behind the sofa!

RF to SL Ballymore Castle who ran a bit better at Yarmouth last time. He looks to be on the way back. He’s a horse who I felt was badly handicapped right back since his two-year-old days but he’s back down to a mark where he can be competitive from and has a good draw.

Goodwood 2.35         MOVE UP Simple. This horse is a Group performer who just does enough. Travels, quickens, stays, professional. Three star*** NAP of the day @ 13/2 with WH.

Goodwood 2.35         SHABBAH I think the handicapper may now have him, already up 27lbs this season, probably wrong with Ryan Moore in the saddle! Watching Brief.

Goodwood 2.35         SHRAAOH Struggling to think of a reason why I’m not backing Shraaoh. Just think he lacks experience and maturity for these big field competitive handicaps. Watching Brief.

Goodwood 3.10         QUEENS TRUST Excellent chance to nick some valuable Black Type. Gets all the allowances and certainly improving. Watching Brief.

Goodwood 3.45         HOLD TIGHT I put him up Ante Post over a fortnight ago, now nearly double the price but I’m getting a run! Here’s why Godolphin owned 4yo gelded son of Exceed and Excel. Just had six career starts, he won on debut over 7F at Leicester on Soft ground last October, went straight into a C2 7F handicap on the sand at Lingfield off OR86 finishing second to Crazy Chic, returned to the leafy Surrey venue to win a C3 6F handicap in January. Next seen at Ascot in May for the 7F C2 Victoria Cup and the form book says he finished last of 26. However that doesn’t tell half the story. He was sent off just 8/1 third favourite suggesting he had being doing something at home, he was squeezed for room at the furlong pole and then heavily eased and such a competitive race may have come just a little too soon. His penultimate start was on the Tapeta at Newcastle in a C2 &F handicap when wearing a hood for the first time he kept on well to be second to Miss bossy Boots. Last time out he was sixth at Newmarket to Swift Approval in the C2 7F Silver Bunbury Cup beaten less than three lengths and hooded again sent off 11/4 favourite. With his current OR 97 he is number 36 on the International list and number 46 on the Stewards Cup list. He is 16/1 with Coral and Betfred ¼ 1,2,3,4 for the Stewards Cup at Goodwood and I will suggest a one star* each way Ante Post wager! I could see him at Goodwood most probably in the Stewards Consolation!”

Goodwood 3.45         GROWL I put him up Ante Post over a fortnight ago for the International at Ascot. Instead I waited for this and has Ryan Moore riding. He is a one star* each way selection @ 14/1 with WH + five places.

Here’s why Bought out of the Hannon yard at the end of last season. A useful 2yo, second in a G2, he had rather lost his way as a 3yo. One of four Fahey inmates to run in the C2 6F sprint at Ripon. Had a coming together with stablemate Eccleston out of the stalls which put them at the back of the main group and did well to weave a passage through. Of Fahey’s runners the newcomer to the yard, Growl (OR89), did best. He has some interesting 3yo form, 5L off Limato in a G3 at Ascot! Quicker ground, stiffer track and he could be a player. He won on debut at two but hasn’t won in ten runs since. A nice 0-90 C3 6F on quicker ground could restore confidence. He’s a hold up horse so hopefully Dr K. won’t take him to Chester!! He got his conditions at Leicester and won well, followed it up in good style at Windsor on ground I thought would be too soft for him and then when returned to the big time handicaps ran a cracking fourth in the C2 7F Bunbury Cup on Newmarkets July course on really quick ground. Now rated OR100 he could choose between the 7F International or the 6F Stewards Cup.”

RF to SL “It’s always been in the back of mind that Growl was just the type of horse for this race. I’m worried about his draw in 26 on the other side of the field – people tell me he can’t win from there – but if he hasn’t been beaten by that I think he has a big chance. He’s in great form.”

Goodwood 3.45         SPRING LOADED History tells us that the winner of the Stewards Cup will have run in the Wokingham, had one run since, be 4,5 or 6 years old, no headgear, Official Rating less than 105 and last run 7-22 days ago. Well Paul D’Arcys speedy grey son of Zebedee certainly fits that category and has another three plusses as well. Will relish the Good to Firm going, Frankie Dettori rides and he had been on my radar for the Wokingham but the ground went against him. One star* each way selection at 28/1 with WH, five places.

Goodwood 3.45         ALBEN STAR Been placed in this before but now an 8yo and probably at his best on the AW. Watching Brief.

RF to SL Alben Star has been given a break to get ready with this and we’re very happy with him. He’s finished third in the race before off a higher mark so is entitled to run well but I just wonder whether stall one is the place to be.

Goodwood 3.45         WITHERNSEA Still convinced he needs cut in the ground to be at his best. Shortlisted for Ayr. Spencer riding is a plus but still a Watching Brief.

RF to SL I’d love some rain for Withernsea who’s another who ran well in the International at Ascot last week. I just fear he may need slower ground to be fully effective over six furlongs here but we’ll see.

Goodwood 4.20         LOCKHEED Second to the impressive Seven Heavens at Ascot in the strongest 2yo maiden I’ve seen so far this season. No Frankel offspring this time! Sadly odds on. Watching Brief.

Goodwood 4.20         ABIENTO Owners having a day out? Surely not good enough. Watching Brief.

RF to SL The draw gods haven’t been kind to Abiento who is out in 12 for the Qatar EBF Stallions Maiden Stakes. I’d be surprised if he could win from out there and he’ll need to catch all the lucky breaks in what looks a warm race.

Goodwood 4.55         STAMP HILL This was top of my list of horses I wanted to back at Goodwood 2016. Could easily be going into this race seeking a hat trick! He runs these downland courses well, will go on the ground, 7F is ideal and I think he has been targeted at this race. What he needs is a hare to run at in the last 100 yards and he is bound to get that here. A really strong traveller and is a two star** each way selection @ 12/1 general although 4 places with Coral.        

RF to SL Stamp Hill is in great form going into the Qatar Stakes and he has been kept fresh for the race. Rain wouldn’t bother him and while he’s wider than ideal in nine – he must have a solid chance.

Goodwood 4.55         ESTIDRAAK Inexperienced. Two runs on the sand then backed and unsighted on turf debut. Watching Brief.

Goodwood 4.55         VENTUROUS No surprise if he won stepping up a furlong. Watching Brief.

Goodwood 4.55         MONTEVERDI Had this horse on the radar since the Craven meeting. Think I would prefer a stiff 6F to an easy 7F. Watching Brief.

Newmarket 2.15        ABINGDON Is she running here en route to or instead of the Yorkshire Oaks. Classy filly who has stamina in abundance. The 2/1 with Coral is way too big. Two star** win.

Newmarket 2.15        FIREGLOW Tries 12F for the first time. Disappointing last few runs but this is about her level and the yard of Mark Johnston is flying. Watching Brief.

Newmarket 2.50        CLEF Tiny but gutsy, out of her depth here. Watching Brief.

RF to SL Clef isn’t the biggest filly in the world but my word she’s tough and genuine. I think it was a good nursery she won at Doncaster last time and she looks to follow up in the British EBF Fillies’ Nursery at Newmarket. It’s a very open race and she needs to raise her game again but her willing attitude will always stand her in good stead.

Newmarket 3.25        BLUSHING ROSE Debut for Lady Rothschild homebred 2yo filly by Dalakhani. Watching Brief.

Newmarket 4.00        JUSTICE SMART Tough handicapping debut off OR84 after a Bath maiden win. Watching Brief.

Doncaster 1.45           SHOWBIZZY Watching Brief.

RF to SL Showbizzy been a very disappointing filly. We’ve stuck a visor on her here and will drop her in this time because she should be winning races like this. She pulled herself up in front so quickly last time that Tony Hamilton thought she’d gone wrong – but she was perfectly fine afterwards. She’s handicapped to be winning and we hope the headgear and change in tactics will help her get back on track.

Doncaster 2.20           RIGHT ACTION Watching Brief.

RF to SL Right Action is a horse like. We couldn’t believe how badly he ran on debut at Carlisle but he was back on track when runner-up at Pontefract next time. He looks the one to beat in the Unison Supporting Your Community Maiden Auction Stakes.

Doncaster 3.30           LAURENCE I thought he should/could have won at Yarmouth last time. In a pocket among horses, got out too late. Trip, ground fine and what is Atzeni doing at Doncaster? Like to see Laurence really finish a race off strongly. Two star** win @ 11/4 general.

Doncaster 4.40           BURNT SUGAR Sold to Middleham Park, stays in the yard and runs at Doncaster in a C3 conditions race when two bigger handicap pots available at Goodwood! Watching Brief.

Notebook “On the evidence of this run Burnt Sugar just has to win a big pot C2 6F handicap in the next twelve months!! Another ridden by Australian James Macdonald again having to overcome a rotten draw in 27. Last after a furlong, as the field migrated towards the centre and far side it was Burnt Sugar who made his challenge alone nearest to the stands. He really quickened approaching the furlong pole but the race was gone and he hung a little right and behind close home. Burnt Sugar hasn’t won since his two year old days and both wins were on the All Weather but there are two C2 6F handicaps coming up at Newmarket, Friday July 8th and Saturday August 13th, in which he was 5th and 2nd last year and with a bit of luck and a clear run has to be an each way shot in both in 2016. The Handicapper has dropped him a pound for that Wokingham run to OR105 and if trainer Richard Hannon put up his star claimer Tom Marquand he could take another three pounds off and would be very back-able!”

Doncaster 5.15           FULL OF PROMISE Watching Brief.

RF to SL We stepped Full Of Promise up to seven furlongs at Ayr last time where she just didn’t seem to handle the track. She’s back over six in the Unison And UIA Mutual Home Insurance Fillies’ Handicap and is another who would benefit from some rain.

Thirsk 1.50                  SNOOKERED Watching Brief.

RF to SL It doesn’t look as though Snookered is good enough to win a maiden and we’ll be going down the handicap route with him after the British Stallion Studs EBF Maiden Stakes. We’re happy with him at home.

Thirsk 2.25                  CARSON CITY Watching Brief.

RF to SL Carson City showed loads of speed at Ayr two starts ago but then wasn’t quick enough for the Super Sprint at Newbury last time. The Tyerman Family Celebration Nursery is where he wants to be and he’d have a small chance.

Thirsk 5.20                  GIN IN THE INN Wanted to back this horse but 6F at Thirsk on Good to Soft even off just OR74 aren’t ideal conditions. Watching Brief.

RF to SL Gin In The Inn has been a very disappointing horse. He works exceptionally well at home but continues to disappoint on the track. Just when I thought he was coming to win at Haydock last time he dropped away quickly. We’ve scoped him since and everything was fine so we’ll try again in the totepool Live Info Download The App Handicap. We’ll drop him in here and see if we can get him back on track because this is a horse who is handicapped to win races if we can get his confidence back.

Hamilton 5.40            GOOD TIME AHEAD   Watching Brief.

RF to SL Good Time Ahead is another who wasn’t fast enough for the Super Sprint but up to six furlongs in the Highland Spring Water Nursery he’ll definitely have a chance.

Hamilton 6.45            NORMANDIE LADY Watching Brief.

RF to SL The handicapper didn’t take any chances with Normandie Lady after she won what I thought was a terrible race three starts ago. She’s down four pounds to 73 now and a mile on soft ground in the Caesar’s Entertainment Handicap is exactly where she wants to be.

Hamilton 7.15            L’APOGEE Watching Brief.

RF to SL L’Apogee may have had loads of runs but the penny still hasn’t dropped with him. He’s handicapped to win a race like the Gas Call Services Handicap and we hope cheek pieces are going to help him but he just needs to get his mind around the game. He’s a grand horse but at the moment he doesn’t think he’s a racehorse.

Hamilton 7.45            ROYAL CONNOISSEUR Watching Brief.

RF to SL Royal Connoisseur loves this place and while it would take a lifetime best to win the Alea Casino Handicap, we are claiming seven pounds off with Hayley Irvine and that should help.

#startracking Friday 29th July 12 noon

I thought yesterday was about to be a huge Celebration with fifty yards to go but he hung on for fourth and we had a minor celebration and the day was paid for! As for Fidaawy I am at a loss for words! Fell out of the stalls, didn’t want to settle and then never put into race. Still convinced this is a talented creature but needs a quicker pace to run at and can’t get that with his present handicap mark so does he go straight to Group company or the alternative opinion could be that he is an in bred, pampered screw!!

Today is yet again a really difficult day to find a bet! However when the bookies are going 7/4 the favourite in a 19 runner handicap over a mile at Goodwood you just have to take him on!

Goodwood 2.00 Mount Logan and Kings Fete have both done us favours but this is a trappy seven runner race and I see no value.

Goodwood 2.35 Cymric, Emotionless, Forge and Thikriyaat are all in the tracker so it’s all or nothing and I’ve chosen nothing! If you twisted my arm I would probably have to go for Forge, maybe. Watching Brief.

Goodwood 3.10 OK, Franklin D is drawn 1, Ryan Moore rides, the handicapper says he’s 10lbs well in, won well last time and from an in form yard BUT at 7/4 just has to be taken on! Those with long term memories and readers of 57SimpleSimonSays… may recall I had Room Key on the radar after he finished third to Highland Reel at this meeting as a 2yo in 2014. Last summer here he ran in the G3 Thoroughbred Stakes that saw his Official Rating rise to a peak of OR103. Here he just sneaks into the BetFred Mile handicap as second reserve off just OR90 and Joe Fanning takes the ride. Drawn in stall 2 gives him a chance of a more prominent position than usual.

Two choices, either take 40/1 with Ladbrokes and five places or 50/1 elsewhere for four places, either way he is a one star* each way selection.

The King George 5F sprint, the Nursery and the 7F fillies G3 hold no interest as a punting medium.

Goodwood 5.30 This 3yo 11F handicap should be right up my street but the only runner of any interest is Poets Word, #SuperStoute’s topweight with Ryan Moore in the saddle. Racing Post probably right in saying “Only fourth when well backed latest, but earlier maiden win has worked out really well”. Last race was at Epsom, a course which doesn’t suit everyone, on ground probably softer than ideal. My notes suggest that Good to Firm is ideal as is the extra furlong, he is on an OR88 in a 0-90 handicap and his draw in stall 3 is fine. However I can see no value in a top priced 9/4 on the High Street. Too many improvers such as Al Neksh, Combative and Indulged! Watching Brief.

 

#FantasticMrFahey runs four at Goodwood and just one at Thirsk, very quiet for a Friday, and with three at Goodwood drawn in double figures, Scofflaw with Jamie Spencer aboard in the 6F nursery would be the only possibility but Mark Johnston has three runners which doesn’t leave much room in the winners enclosure!

#startracking Thursday 28th July 12 noon

Yangtze squeezed home last night and remains a work in progress (Melrose @ Ebor meeting?), War Story was awful and Twin Sails did everything but win! Still got out with our noses in front!

Again struggling to find a good bet on the Downs but I think #SuperStoute has a solid shortie at Nottingham.

Goodwood 2.00         STARGAZER Not seen since 22nd April when he showed a smart turn of foot to win a C3 10F Sandown handicap. Had some decent horses behind him that day but has gone up 9lbs for his efforts. Want to back him but that break, a rise in his mark, drawn 16 out of 17, quicker ground all put me off. Ryan Moore rides which is always a plus but he has a Piggott-esque habit that if he thinks the horse has too much against him he will look after him for another day, I think Convey in the Hunt Cup. This could be expensive as he thunders late down the outside  but he’s a Watching Brief.

Goodwood 2.00         So what can we take Stargazer on with? Three of these met at Newmarket three weeks ago when Ode to Evening came out on top and he could continue to improve but he didn’t win from the front as many of Mark Johnston’s do and he didn’t look that straightforward, Luca Cumani’s Banksea was 5th , had every chance and the handicapper may have him. The third horse was DWIGHT D who ran on late having been given what many would see as a typical Jamie Spencer ride, held up never quite got there! Thought good enough to start the season in the G3 Sandown Derby trial and the G3 Chester Vase, I am a big enough fan of Spencer to suggest the ground, the draw (4 of 17), his handicap mark are all in the horses favour and Dwight D will be another winner for the red hot William Haggas. Two star** each way selection @ 13/2 with WH and especially SkyBet who will give you your win stake back if Dwight D is second or third! Top company.

Rest of Goodwood Thursday Small turnout of just 5 for the G2 Richmond, the 14F fillies G3 has awkward written all over it, the fillies maiden holds no punting interest and I’m going out on a limb and going to suggest backing #FantasticMrFahey each way in the last two albeit for small stakes.

Goodwood 4.55         LADY IN QUESTION Won on debut at Thirsk over 6F finishing strongly and then midfield in the Super Sprint dropping back to 5F. This 7F is much more suitable and races here off OR 78 is drawn 2 and if Jack Garritty  can find a seam in the straight she could be a player. The 5th and 6th in her maiden have both won since and are currently rated OR 85 & OR 89 which gives hope. #FantasticMrFahey told sportinglife.comLady In Question last ran in the Weatherbys Super Sprint and we’re stepping her up in trip to seven furlongs for the Telegraph Nursery. I think it will suit her, she’s a filly we like and she’d definitely have a chance. She’s well drawn in two but will need luck in running.” Too late for the 14’s but still a value one star* each way selection @ 10/1 general.

Goodwood 5.30         CELEBRATION When I first glanced at this race I was all over Lathom after his last run at York but I’ve missed the 12’s and the 6’s on offer now is no value. Lathom hasn’t won since his surprise 28/1 Super Sprint victory last summer, has transferred from Fahey to O’Meara but has slipped down the weights but is he a winner for a trainer who has had just 25 winners from 270+ runners in the last two months at less than 10% from his new yard? However just two lengths behind Lathom at York was Celebration and he was drawn too high to win, didn’t have the smoothest passage and is a point and go sprinter to whom all grounds come alike and is grossly overpriced. One star* each way selection @ 40/1 with Ladbrokes ¼ 1,2,3,4!!

#FantasticMrFahey told sportinglife.com We’ve two in the closing Tatler Stakes. The owner was very keen to run Celebration and I can see why as he’s capable of going well if things go right for him.”

The yard run two here and Paddy Power looked like he was coming to hand a couple of runs ago only to disappoint again. NotWithMyMoney!! #FantasticMrFahey told sportinglife.comPaddy Power is a very frustrating horse. I said at the weekend he works like a machine at home but just isn’t transferring it to the track. He travelled very well to two out at Newmarket but didn’t pick up as anticipated. We’ll try again here as he took the race well and the owners are down at the meeting.”

Nottingham 4.35       FIDAAWY I am absolutely convinced this is a Group horse in the making. #SuperStoute hasn’t rushed him but he looked ready to go to work at Carlisle when he settled and won readily. Having been gelded could be the making of him. I have no concerns with the trip, the ground, the opposition, the grade and he is a four star**** nap @ 13/8 with Betfred. Come on Uncle Ted!!