Saturday’s big races include the Cambridgeshire Stakes and Seymour Biz has his eye on a John Gosden Horse. Here are his Lucky 15 Tips.
The two-year-olds take centre stage this weekend with the Royal Lodge, Cheveley Park and Middle Park Stakes at Newmarket. Unfortunately not great betting contests as the main contenders are quite short prices. But we do have the Cambridgeshire on the card as well as two handicaps on the card at Haydock Park, which are televised. Haydock has followed the trend with two 2-year-old stakes races not on TV. For the two-year-old races, Pretty Pollyanna trained by Michael Bell looks good for the Cheveley Park after winning the Duchess Of Cambridge Stakes at Newmarket. Ten Sovreigns from Aiden O’Brien’s yard is highly fancied for the Middle Park after two wins at the Curragh. As to the Royal Lodge, I will put my fancy in the Lucky Fifteen along with the Cambridgeshire and two decent handicaps at Haydock. So here are my thoughts for those four televised races, with hopefully some decent priced winners.
Starting at Haydock with the Smarkets Betting Exchange Handicap at 2.05 we have a favourite who has not been seen out since running in the Lincoln six months ago. Mitchum Swagger runs well at Haydock and has won over the course and distance but Ralph Beckett’s charge time off the track and the extra burden of top weight puts me off him. Fire Brigade has been running well all season, not least with his good second at Ayr last week. Unfortunately he always seem to find one too good for him and in nine tries this year he has been unable to get his head in front. However all his victories have come on soft or good/soft going and that is what he will find here, he deserves a victory and could be the answer here. There are several others worth a mention especially Simon Crisford’s Mordin, who has been runner-up in four of his last five starts. He was beaten only a neck by a horse he could meet here, Majboor, but Mordin will be on 1lb better terms. Richard Hannon’s Maypole is at the bottom of the handicap but his best form is on the all-weather and the heavy ground expected won’t suit him. Markazi has been running well in France, but nearly all the greys victories have come on firm going, he won’t be suited by a slog through the Haydock mud. Similarly Masham Star who ran a good second at Bath last time has only ever won on good/firm. A soft ground specialist is Borderforce, Kevin Burke’s gelding was only sixth behind Waaif at Ayr last week but can run into a place here at a nice price.
At 3.15 we have the Smarkets Handicap over a straight 5 furlongs. Tim Easterby sends the Ayr Silver Cup’s third Confessional here after his exertions last week. The veteran is a course and distance winner albeit 6 years ago, he will relish the going and give his followers a good race. Behind him in sixth last week was Dakota Gold who has been running well recently without troubling the judge. Michael Dods gelding has won on soft and an put up a good show here. Mayleaf Shine was only beaten a short head last week but is easily upset in the stalls spoiling her chances, she is a course and distance winner on heavy going and if overcoming her stalls problems has a good chance. Holmeswood was highly fancied on his last outing at Doncaster where he could finish only eighth, he seems to have lost his way recently. Similarly with Rapid Applause, who started the season brightly with victories at Hamilton and Beverley, he has run poorly despite going off a warm favourite on a couple of occasions, he is best watched at present. The standout horse here is Paul Midgley’s Tarboosh, he is on a four timer after fine victories in July and August. He has had a break since winning those small field races, but the manner of his wins showed that he is well capable of taking this competitive handicap.
Moving south to Newmarket, the first race on the card at 1.50 is the Juddmonte Royal Lodge Stakes.This is not a great betting race where we can expect a nicely priced outsider to come romping home, however although there is a short priced favourite from John Gosden’s yard in Beatboxer there is value elsewhere. Beatboxer is unbeaten in two starts, winning easily on both occasions, but he does need the ground to be right for him. Any give in the going will go against him and to be honest he hasn’t beaten much yet. At this stage Aiden O’Brien has seven horses declared for this race and second guessing him is always a difficult matter, but I think his best entrant is Cape Of Good Hope. This is another Galileo colt, a brother to Highland Reel who cost 240,000gns as a yearling, after winning at Tipperary he came here to headquarters to run a poor second to the brilliant Quorto. I think he is a top of the ground specialist who needs everything to fall his way. Richard Hannon’s Kuwait Currency has won his last couple of races after a terrible start on his first visit to a racecourse here at Newmarket. He was stone last that day beaten 25 lengths by Al Hilalee but he seems to have got the hang of things since then. I am still wary of his form here at Newmarket. Line Of Duty got home at Goodwood in his latest race after two seconds, but this is a big step up in class. Tom Dascombe sends Arthur Kitt here and the stable’s star two-year-old is looking to get back on track after being trounced by Too Darn Hot at Sandown. That was no disgrace to Gosden’s star and after two earlier wins at Haydock and Royal Ascot, Dascombe is hoping his best juvenile since Brown Panther can show a clean pair of heels to the rest of the field.
And so we come to the highlight of the day, the bet365 Cambridgeshire Handicap at 3.40. The fancy of the bookmakers is Kynren from David Barron’s stable, a beaten favourite last time at York when running second to Poets Society, he had several of this field behind him that day including Sharja Bridge, Original Choice and Afaak. If he reproduces that form he should be in the shake up. Sharja Bridge is up near the top of the handicap with 9st 9lbs which could prove too much. On the same mark is Pivoine who won well at York last time on good/firm where he got revenge on Alfarris, who had proved his nemesis on a couple of occasions. These two may have their own private battle, Pivoine is raised 8lbs for that win so Alfarris is 5lbs better off, meaning he should get the better of him this time. Richard Fahey has the 2015 winner, Third Time Lucky, entered and he has shown some good form this season winning at York in July, however he has 10lbs more to carry than he had when claiming that famous victory. Aiden O’Brien has an entry with Kenya, the 3-year-old won at the Curragh in September over a mile, the extra furlong here may not suit the colt, he also seems to prefer softer going. John Gosden has Stylehunter who needs to get in at the bottom of the handicap. He has been laid out for this after dodging a couple of other contests he had been declared for earlier in the month after winning a small race Goodwood in August. He is my idea of the winner of this 35 runner handicap and being only a 3-year-old is not a problem as Third Time Lucky proved in 2015.
Saturday Lucky 15
2.05 Haydock. Fire Brigade
3.15 Haydock. Tarboosh
1.50 Newmarket. Arthur Kitt
3.40 Newmarket. Stylehunter
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