A wonderful weekend for the Irish at Newmarket with Joseph O’Brien saddling the winner of the Fillies’ Mile courtesy of Pretty Gorgeous while his father Aidan had the 1-2 in the Dewhurst with St Mark’s Basilica and Wembley. Ante-post betting is not every one’s cup of tea, but I felt the 16/1 post race for Wembley in the 2000 Guineas next spring was too big. He is now a best priced 12/1 with Unibet and that looks a fair price.
The ground was described as soft at noon on Sunday for today’s eight-race card which begins with a competitive 12f handicap which sees several lightly raced three-year-olds in opposition. Hugo Palmer has his string in good form, and I am loath to desert Zoran who is only 3lbs higher than when doing us a favour at Newmarket last time. That run was over 10f, but he stays this trip, although this will be the softest ground he has encountered to date.
Aaddeey finished 4l in front of Opera Gift (12.45) when both colts made their racecourse debuts at Goodwood last month and the pair have both subsequently got their head in front at Nottingham and Pontefract, respectively. The selection – 9/4 with William Hill – is 9lbs better off with Aaddeey in the weights this afternoon and he won a shade over 12f last time when the further he went the better he went. Oisin Murphy takes over in the saddle and, as a son of Nathaniel, he should appreciate today’s forecast ground.
Addosh (2.53) was no match for John Gosden’s Third Kingdom – holds a Group 1 entry – at Newcastle last time, but she attracted market support and looks to have been given a fair mark for her nursery debut given she is entitled to improve again after just two career starts. William Buick takes over in the saddle on the filly – 9/2 with 10bet – who has edged right coming out of the stalls in both previous runs which is a slight concern.
Stallone will appreciate the return to 7f having stayed on at one pace at Leicester last week over six. Oisin Murphy keeps the ride and he looks sure to run a big race but Praised (3.23) looked to be crying out for a step up in trip when narrowly justifying favouritism at Redcar over 6f last time having looked in trouble at halfway. This daughter of Pivotal -15/8 with Unibet – looks sure to improve for today’s extra furlong and Tom Marquand returns to the saddle on her handicap debut.
Chichester is visored for the first time at Wolverhampton this evening and he drops back in trip to an extended mile having disappointed at Chester last time. Hollie Doyle should have won on Sir Michael Stoute’s colt at Lingfield back in June and she returns to the plate this evening. She is well drawn in stall one and I expect Doyle to send her forward from the gates.
Jim Crowley goes to Yarmouth so Dane O’Neill takes over in the saddle aboard Turaath (8.00) who hung left to the stands’ rail when finishing third at Kempton last time suggesting she would appreciate running on a left-handed track. The Charlie Hills’ trained three-year-old – a general 4s shot – has only had four career starts and is well drawn in stall six.
A’Shamardi (8.30) has been raised 8lbs for scoring at Lingfield stepped up in trip on his handicap debut but was well on top at the end and is taken to follow up in the lucky last. Trainer(s) Simon/Ed Crisford have fitted their gelding with first time cheek-pieces and a visor in his last couple of starts and they change the headgear again this evening with the visor replaced by blinkers. Jack Mitchell takes over in the saddle on the gelding who is 2s from 5/2 with William Hill.