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Boodles Yorkshire Cup

Hi all,

Inside today’s main piece I’m previewing Friday’s Boodles Yorkshire Cup Stakes.

Firstly, apologies for missing Thursday's column due to other unexpected commitments.

Regarding Wednesday's races at York, I'm grateful I chose not to attend after witnessing the distressing sight of Hispanic continuing to race with a broken leg in the 6f handicap.

After hitting the crossbar with a couple of horses on day one of the Dante meeting, I was hoping to go one better on Thursday and I did.

You can't beat a winning day at the races

There's little that compares to the thrill of cheering home a winner on the Knavesmire, and I was fortunate to experience it twice on Wednesday, thanks to Clarendon House and Port Lynas. For those who joined Victor Value yesterday you’ll have enjoyed Thursday as much as I did.

Port Lynas' victory in the one-mile Hambleton Handicap was particularly impressive, with jockey Callum Rodriguez delivering a great front-running ride. Despite a strong challenge from Northern Express, Port Lynas held on gamely for the win. Despite the strong fractions set by the winner nothing could really get involved from the rear.

In the opening 5f handicap, Tom Marquand steered Clarendon House to victory with a well-judged ride. Despite slight concerns about stall 12, Marquand navigated his horse expertly to secure success, following through the right horses in Looking For Lynda and Spartan Arrow. My only worry was whether he would get a run 2f out, but he did and pounced to collar Looking For Lynda close to the finish.

On Course Profits free Horse Racing magazine

These victories underscore the importance of considering jockeys when making selections, as both winners were guided to success by reliable and skilled jockeys who deliver when the horse is good enough.

The dogs were barking for the Dante winner

The Dante Stakes may not have featured the strongest field, but it did provide us with an impressive winner in Economics, trained by William Haggas. The colt showed raw talent and cruised to victory, although he looked a bit green when taking the lead. With his withdrawal from the Epsom Derby, there's now a decision for connections to make regarding supplementing him for Epsom at a cost of £75,000.

While Economics undoubtedly has the potential to be a Group 1 winner, there are doubts about his suitability for the undulating track at Epsom. I think despite his easy victory Haggas will opt to keep the colt to galloping tracks.

You can watch his win here. Do you agree with my sentiments about Epsom.

Before the race, I was considering a small bet on Caviar Heights, but the trackside chatter suggested that Economics was the best 3-year-old in the Haggas yard and was likely to dominate. While it's usually wise to ignore racecourse gossip, in races like this, it's worth paying attention when the right people are saying it.  Fortunately, I didn’t give Victor Value subscribers a selection in the race, so I was free to switch horses given the new information available. 

As I've emphasized before, flexibility is key in this game. It's essential not to become too attached to specific positions or predictions. In this ever-changing sport, being adaptable is crucial.

Before the race I decided to throw a tenner on the winner, and it turned out to be a smart move. When you're on a winning streak, these decisions often pay off, but when you're not, they don't.

This serves as a reminder to stay open-minded and willing to adjust your strategy based on new information.

Big Evs

Big Evs, one of last season's top juveniles, marked his return to action with a victory in the Listed Westow Stakes. He doesn’t seem to have grown much between two and three. Nonetheless, he retains his combination of muscularity and speed. Considering it was his first race since winning the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint at Santa Anita, it's understandable that he was more workmanlike than spectacular. He's expected to improve for this outing. His sights are now set on Royal Ascot and the Group 1 five-furlong sprint. His win was the final leg of Tom Marquand hat trick.

York Dante Meeting – Day 3

The Aidan O'Brien trained colt Tower Of London is set to go off a warm favourite for the Group 2 Boodles Yorkshire Cup (3.45) which is the feature race on the final day of the Dante meeting at York.

The Listed Marygate Fillies' Stakes (2.15) gets the action underway on the Dante meeting's final day, while the Listed Sky Bet Fillies' Stakes (3.15) is another interesting race on a seven race card which also includes three big field handicaps.

ITV Racing are covering five races live from the Dante meeting and the 1m 2f handicap (2:30) at Newbury.

3:45 – Boodles Yorkshire Cup Stakes (Group 2) – 1m 6f

Despite a modest field of seven contenders, the Boodles Yorkshire Cup Stakes promises a captivating showdown.

Tower Of London arrives with impressive victories in Saudi Arabia and Meydan under his belt, including a triumph in the Dubai Gold Cup. Carrying a 3lb penalty, he’s progressive and remains formidable, especially on good or faster ground.

Vauban, a top-class hurdler, demonstrated his flat racing prowess with a commanding win in a Royal Ascot handicap over today’s distance last year. Although his latest outing in the Melbourne Cup was disappointing, he looks official ratings and emerges as a strong contender in this race.

Hamish, despite his veteran status, has clinched victories in his last five starts in Group 3 company. However, his participation may hinge on ground conditions, with his preference leaning towards softer going.

Giavellotto, while showing prowess to win last year’s race, faces a formidable challenge, from the likes Tower Of London, whom he was behind in recent Middle Eastern encounters. Nonetheless, he remains a contender, albeit in a deeper contest than 12 months ago.

Gregory, victorious on his first three starts last season, including the Queen’s Vase at Royal Ascot returns for the first time since disappointing on soft ground in the St Leger. He could be the sort to improve from three to four.

Al Qareem finished runner-up to Hamish in the John Porter Stakes at Newbury on his seasonal return. Given his likely position as the sole front runner in the line-up, he cannot be totally dismissed.

Friday Selection:

I’m taking on the highly regarded Devoted Queen and True Cyan in the Sky Bet Fillies' Stakes (3:15) with Bolsena. The daughter of Kingman got off the mark at the fourth attempt when winning a Newmarket last month. She’ll need to improve again stepped into pattern company but has the scope to improve with racing and won’t be far away. Ryan Moore who rode her last time stays in the saddle. Her owner and trainer combined to win this in 2022 and I’m hoping they can do so again


3:15 – Bolsena – 13/2 @ Coral & Ladbrokes.

Good luck with your Friday bets.


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