It’s Tuesday so it’s a delve into the notebook. As I look back on week of action on the flat. Plus, you'll find today’s selection from Newcastle.
A very busy week for the notebook. The Derby & Oaks Trials have been run and a few potential Royal Ascot horses came onto the radar. Here are my thoughts on last week’s action, including two eyecatchers for the tracker.
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Sandown – Thursday
My Prospero continued the red-hot form of the William Haggas yard when winning the Listed Heron Stakes at Sandown. Making just his third career start he made it 2-2 for the season with a decisive success from Reach For The Moon. He’s progressive and should be up to winning in Group company this season. The runner-up will be better for this run and for a step up to 1m 2f.
Goodwood – Friday
There were Derby & Oaks Trials at Goodwood and both races were won by improving types but neither have Epsom entries.
The Listed Cocked Hat Stakes (1m 3f) was won by the David Menuisier trained Lionel. Given the steadily run race wouldn’t have suited him and nor did the track. This was a fine effort from the colt who’s got King Edward VII Stakes and Irish Derby entries. I like him a lot and there should be more improvement to come as he steps up to 1m 4f+ and races on a more conventional track. Given his dam won the Park Hill Stakes over the St Leger Distance then the final Classic of the season is a legitimate target for him.
The Listed Height Of Fashion Stakes (1m 2f) was won by the 11/10 favourite Sea Silk Road. The daughter of Sea The Stars built on the promise of her Nottingham maiden success with a tidy success on the soft ground. A step up in trip will bring out more improvement in the filly who looks an ideal type for the Group 2 Ribblesdale Stakes at Royal Ascot.
Arguably the most impressive performance on the Goodwood came from Montassib who produced a good turn of foot to win the 7f handicap. The soft ground proved no inconvenience for the 4-year-old who is now 3-3. He looked a Group horse in a handicap on Friday but before that he looks set for another run in a handicap in The Buckingham Palace Stakes at Royal Ascot. He will take some beating there.
Haydock – Saturday
I mentioned in Monday’s column that I thought Temple Stakes runner-up Twilight Calls can reverse placings with Kings Lynn in the King Stand Stakes at Royal Ascot. In fact, he could turn out to be the best of the home team on a track that will suit his hold up style.
In the other Group 2 race on the Haydock card. El Caballo got the better of Flaming Rib in an exciting finish to the Sandy Lane Stakes. The pair look set to renew rivalry in the Group 1 Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot. I fancy the winner will uphold that form next time and goes there with a vert good chance.
Whoputfiftyinyou wanted the win more than Mighty Ulysses in the valuable Silver Bowl Handicap. He’s been targeted at the Britannia Handicap at Royal Ascot and the likely strong pace will suit the 3-year-old’s hold up style of racing.
Earlier on the card Valley Forge got back to winning ways in the 2m handicap. The step up in trip really suited the 4-year-old who is now one of the leading contenders for the Northumberland Plate. He’s a best priced 10/1 with William Hill for that race and although he’s yet to race on the all-weather his pedigree suggests he won’t have any problem with it.
Sunday – Curragh & York
The star of the show on Sunday was Homeless Songs’ win the Irish 1.000 Guineas. Her turn off foot will make her hard to beat in races against her own sex. We may even see her take on 2,000 Guineas Coroebus later in the season. Now that would be a race and with the fillies’ allowance, she could well prove up to beating that exciting colt.
The Sky Bet Sunday Series continues to provide big fields and competitive racing. The show moved to York on Sunday. I haven’t had a chance to have a real look at the York racing from Sunday. However, I think there will be plenty of winners come out of it. I backed one there that has gone into the notebook.
Pierre Lapin – Adrian McGuinness
The 5-year-old has won since landing the Group 2 Mill Reef Stakes when trained by Roger Varian and looked well out of form on three starts in Meydan over the winter. However, there was to like about his 1 ½ length 4th of 27 at the Curragh on Friday. That was his best performance since joining his new yard last year. Strong at the finish, the return to a mile suited and he’s become well handicapped horse. Connections will be disappointed if he can't win a race like this.
Geremia – Jim Goldie
The 4-year-old had made a highly promising stable debut when a 4¼ length 5th of 14 to Heart of Soul over an inadequate 1m 3f at Hamilton. The return to 2m at York on Sunday was expected to see a better performance and so it proved. Given he didn’t get the best of runs twice in the straight his 2-length 3rd of 17 can be marked up. Although he’s 0-8 on turf, he’s as effective on the grass as the all-weather and is on winnable mark. Can be placed to advantage sooner rather than later.
It feels more like the winter season today with Bangor, Southwell and Punchestown racing over the jumps this afternoon. There’s only one turf meeting this side of the Irish Sea at Bath. The day’s sport is completed by all-weather teatime fixtures at Lingfield and Newcastle and flat card at Gowran Park. There are two of interest at Newcastle this evening. I have to say today's doesn't look good at all.
7:30 – Biplane’s sole career win came here over 7f last autumn. He then ran well when runner-up on two starts over mile at Southwell over the winter. Not in the same form back on turf at Beverley 41-days ago. Get’s the first time cheekpieces today and Callum Rodriguez who won on him here is back in the saddle.
8:05 – Thaki won a Class 6 handicap C&D in January and is back in that class for the first time since that success. Remains 4lb above his last winning mark but the promising Ryan Sexton takes off a useful 5lb and the yard had a winner at Leicester yesterday.
1pt win – Thaki – 5/1 or bigger.
Good luck with your Tuesday bets.