Good morning all,
How’s Doncaster going for you this week? Sadly, no crowds now, thanks to the latest Government edict, which has something to do with the number six, and did nothing more than remind me we needed half a dozen eggs at Tesco yesterday.
Advance notice of my Portland tip, which I’ve already backed, as the price is starting to go – I’ve had a good e/w bet on Arecibo, who must be in the frame at worst if he runs his race. I’ll go into detail a bit more about that tomorrow but there’s four races on ITV to get stuck into today, which I’ve covered on the main piece.
1.40 – Mallard Handicap 1m6f
First question I have is – where’s the pace coming from? Struggling to see where myself and that means this could turn messy.
So with that, I’ve tried to find the leader and see if they can make all. I’m thinking Hochfeld looks the most likely pacemaker, as he often went from the front a couple of seasons ago and usually ran with credit, and they did try to make all with him at Sandown back in July but he got no peace and was beaten (but not disgraced). The trip was on the short side for him at Haydock last time but he gave the impression of still being in form after his Goodwood success and this step back up to 14f will suit. In the hope De Sousa can dictate the fractions, I’ll chance him. Never easy making all at Donny, but I’m lured in by the price.
2.10 – 6½f Handicap
One of those intermediate trips where you have to make the decision of – do I go with the 6f sprinter and hope they see it out, or the 7f horse in the hope it’s quick enough to go with the sprinters before that extra bit of stamina they have kicks in?
I’ve gone with the latter and Ghalyoon, who stays 7f really well but also travels as well as a sprinter and this trip could be ideal. On top of which, he has experience of Doncaster, having been beaten a neck here last time out and with the winner of that, Magical Wish, running well in a competitive handicap at Goodwood next time out (beaten a head) the form looks very solid. Drawn up the middle, he can track the pace before coming through late.
Those wanting something a bit more adventurous could have a look at Manigordo, beaten a length in the big sales race over C&D last year. His Sandown win in June showed he’s trained on fine this year and there are legitimate excuses for two defeats since.
2.40 – Flying Childers
Two year old races aren’t my idea of a fun time at the best of times, but even I can see the chances of Sacred here. Yes she’s favourite but rightly so, with her length second to the hugely improved Miss Amulet in the Lowther the best piece of form on show. A drop back to 5f isn’t going to bother her and stall 10 is a good draw to work from.
3.15 – Doncaster Cup 2m2½f
I have much the same question for this as I did the Mallard, namely where’s the pace coming from?
Add in the fact that a 98-rated handicapper, yet to win outside of Class 3 handicaps is the 3-1 second favourite here and it shows you what a weak event this looks. Even with the whopping 3yo allowance Revolver gets I’m struggling to have him at the price, although I’ll grant you he should stay this trip.
If this is run at a slow pace I think it might be Eagles By Day who could be best suited by that. Winner of the John Smith's Silver Cup over 14f at York, he’s twice come up against top notchers in the shape of Stradivarious and Enbihaar since then. There’s nothing of that calibre here and in the hope he improves again for another step up in trip, he’ll do for me.
Today's selection – Ghalyoon 2.10 Doncaster
Good luck with all your bets today,