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Baashir

Good morning all,

One of the more low-key Saturdays on the racing calendar, which is hardly surprising with Ascot just around the corner. 

Nevertheless, there’s some winners in there somewhere, and both York and Sandown have a few competitive handicaps to look at, so that’s what we’ll do! 

2.00 York – Queen Mother’s Cup Handicap (1m4f)

The lady amateurs take to the saddle for the Queen Mum Cup, and it isn't easy to solve. Those with priogressive profiles have to prove themselves at the trip, and those that definitely stay aren’t in the best of form! Throw in the fact plenty of these will be held up too, and it makes it a tricky one to start with. 


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I’m going to give Sameem a try, although it’ll be small stakes stuff. He gets 11f, as he showed when scoring for James Tate back in 2019, but since then his form has been pretty moderate and he’s now joined Tim Easterby in an effort to try and turn him around. 

He’d have needed his first start here in May after an absence, but it wasn’t a total write-off at Ripon last time, going from the front weakening in the final quarter mile in a race won by the much more fancied stablemate Fishable. He’s dropped a fair way in the weights in a short space of time, and if he’s allowed an easy time on the front, has half a chance of making all. 

2.35 York – JCB Handicap 7f 

Doesn’t get much easier with this 7f handicap either. Dazzling Dan, a horse I’ve always liked, has done well since going up in trip this year but how much there’s left in his current handicap mark is open to question. He’ll run his race, and ought to be in the frame, but equally there might be something too good lurking elsewhere. 

Small split stakes on Queen’s Sargent and Baashir for me. The former looked set for a good season after winning over 7f at Catterick earlier in the season but hasn’t gone on from that. However, he’s not had those same conditions since (7f and quick ground) and could bounce back here. 

Baashir’s neck second to Cruyff Turn at Nottingham on his seasonal reappearance in May looks a decent piece of form now, with the winner going in again at Leicester in the week and the third only beaten a nose at Bath on his next start. He probably wasn’t best placed at Chelmsford last time, trapped out three wide for much of the contest, but he did stick on again in final half furlong after looking like he might drop right away. It may be a mile turns out to be his best trip but they might try and make all from stall 2 here, which gives him a chance. Even if they don’t lead, this will be solidly run, and there’s surely better to come yet. 

2.50 Sandown – Coral Handicap (1m) 

I’m going to give Buxted Two one more chance to show his second to Namoos here in April wasn’t a fluke. That was a better race than this (winner Naamoos already looks Listed class) and he would have been second to him regardless of Rifleman’s unseat, and since then he’s raced twice on ground with plenty of cut in it, and I don’t think that’s seen him to best effect. Back on quicker ground today, and at a track we know he acts at, there can be no excuses. At a double figure price, I’m willing to back him one more time. 

3.25 Sandown – Coral Handicap (1m1f)

Ensured is going to be a popular choice after his 11l romp here last time out, but he was the only one that seemed to handle the soft ground that day and not only will he not get that here, but the handicapper has put him in on what looks a stiff enough mark as well. 

I prefer the claims of King Of Clubs, a really good-looking Intello colt that I’ve twice seen at Nottingham this season. He’s been the pick of the paddock on both occasions, and is a touch unlucky not to be unbeaten in his last two. He lost out to Sir Rumi on the bob in April (form that’s stood up well, with the winner progressing) but made no mistake back there a month later, winning easily. He looks a stout stayer and this trip/uphill finish will play to his strengths once more. 

Today’s selection – Baashir 2.35 York

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Good luck with all your bets today,

David. 

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