Good morning all,
It was great to see racing back at York. Made even better when you manage to find three winners in the big field handicaps.
[Editor's Note: Members of John's Victor Value service had Flyin Solo advised 11/2 (3/1 SP), Mr Lupton advised at 10/1 (14/1 SP), Ilaraab advised 4/1 (7/2 SP)]
Yesterday’s Musidora Stakes was won by the Aidan O’Brien trained filly Snowfall. Ryan Moore set a modest pace on the filly. Before kicking for home three out and that was race over. In truth he rode the other jockeys to sleep.
The well fancied Noon Star could only finish second but didn’t get the race run to suit. Teona was slowly away and then far too keen on her seasonal reappearance and she had no more to give coming to the final furlong. When she starts to settle, she will be able to show us how good she is. The winner was made second favourite for the Oaks on the back of this success and the extra distance of the race will suit her on pedigree. Along with Santa Barbara Ballydoyle now have a stranglehold on the Oaks.
The Group 2 Dante Stakes (3:10) is today’s feature race and sees the return of Derby second favourite High Definition. A winner of both juvenile starts. He get’s a pacemaker for his return to action. An impressive win here would see him vying for Derby favouritism with stablemate Bolshoi Ballet.
Inside today’s main piece. You can read some thoughts on day two of the Dante Festival.
York Dante Festival – Day 2
1:40 – Matchbook Betting Exchange Handicap (Class 2) – 5f
Recent Chester eyecatcher Count D’Orsay heads the betting after his promising 2nd of 9 last week. Needs soft to be in the going description and if he get’s his ground and this race doesn’t come to quick will be tough to beat.
Illusionist is shorter in the betting than expected. However, his best two RPR’s have come over C&D. The 4-year-old shaped better than his final finishing position of 8th at Newmarket suggests on his return to action. On a winnable mark.
Muscika wasn’t seen to best advantage at Ripon last time. Twice a course winner the 7-year-old had Illusionist back in third when winning over C&D last October. There shouldn’t be much between the pair again at the revised weights.
Michael Dods is 0-26 in the past 14-days but two of his runners ran well here yesterday. That gives me hope that we can see a good run from Jawwaal. He was a shading disappointing when a beaten favourite on his Beverley return. Better can be expected here and he’s high on the shortlist.
2:40 – Matchbook Betting Podcast Hambleton Handicap (Class 2 – 1m
Mathew Flinders looked a valuable mile handicap winner in waiting when 3rd of 16 in Newbury’s Spring Cup last time. His sole poor run last season came here on soft ground last October but that was over an extended 1m 2f. Probably wouldn’t want the ground too testing but shouldn’t be far away, for a yard that had a winner here yesterday.
Hartswood won over C&D last summer and was runner-up to Brunch here over C&D at the Ebor Festival. Likely needed his seasonal return in the Thirsk Hunt Cup last time and will strip fitter today.
Brunch beat Hartswood by ½ length in that York handicap but must give his old rival 8lb here. He made a pleasing return to action when runner-up in the Lincoln Handicap. The 4-year-old will likely pop up in one of these races this season.
Shelir had the run of the race when only beaten a short head at Haydock last time. Nudged up 1lb for that effort but shouldn’t be far away again here.
La Trinidad looked a bit rusty on his seasonal return at Ripon. He was only beaten a length into third behind Brunch her last August and meet that one on 9lb better terms here. The stronger the gallop better his chance and he’s got each way claims.
3:10 – Al Basti Equiworld Dubai Dante Stakes (Group 2) – 1m 2 ½ f
High Definition looked high-class when winning a Group 2 at the Curragh back In September. This track should really play to his strengths and you would like to think that stablemate Roman Empire is in the race to play the role of pacemaker.
There are several interesting rivals to the favourite, including last time out Newbury winner Hurricane Lane and the returning Gear Up. The latter won a Group 1 at Saint-Cloud on his final juvenile start. He looks the biggest rival to the favourite and can improve as a 3-year-old.
Uncle Bryn wasn’t seen to best effect at Epsom on his seasonal return. He’s highly regarded and better run can be expected here. Although I would be disappointed if he was to prove better than High Definition or Gear Up.
Here’s hoping we can end the week with a winner.
2:10 – Chamade’s two career wins have come when she has been able to dictate from the front. There’s a good chance that she might get a solo here and if she does will be hard to pass. Might need softer ground but at around 10/1 she makes plenty of appeal.
Chamade – 10/1 @ Bet365 & Paddy Power
Good luck with your Thursday bets.