At the time of writing the Irish 2000 Guineas meeting at the Curragh is in doubt following Thursday night’s deluge and we begin our preview at Haydock where conditions were described as heavy on Friday morning.
Adam Kirby takes over in the saddle aboard Mystical Dawn (1.20) with William Buick due to ride in Ireland and James Doyle having six rides at Newmarket. The selection – 5/2 with 10Bet – beat the Derby favourite Bolshoi Ballet on soft ground on debut and looked ready for a step up in distance when runner up at Nottingham on his seasonal debut earlier in the month. Side Shot did us a favour when scoring at Doncaster and coped well enough with heavy ground at Newmarket back in the autumn. He is a worthy market leader, but I just favour the Godolphin runner.
Raadobarg has been put in as the 2/1 market leader in the Silver Bowl and an opening mark of 88 might prove lenient for Roger Varian’s Night Of Thunder colt who was a facile winner from a 74-rated rival – who received 7lbs – at Thirsk earlier in the month. The colt is drawn wide in stall nine, however, and seven of the ten runners were last time out winners. He looks too short at his current odds.
My two against the field are Seasett and Nebulosa (3.00) with marginal preference for the Andrew Balding-trained filly who got up close home to win a Goodwood handicap over 7f on her reappearance from a 5lbs lower mark. She looks sure to appreciate the step up to a mile for the first time and does have winning form on soft ground. Her draw in eight is less than ideal but she gets the each way vote at 8/1 with William Hill.
The 6f Gp 2 Sandy Lane Stakes for the classic generation is a cracker. Method was one of my horses to follow this term but his ability to handle heavy ground is unproven and he is reluctantly overlooked.
Isabella Giles (3.35) will appreciate underfoot conditions having won the Prestige Stakes over an additional furlong at Goodwood. She has looked a sprinter to me so far this term and she gets the each way vote at 8/1 with Boylesports.
I was not convinced about the juvenile form of Aldaary (2.50), but I was very impressed with his Ascot success on his reappearance last time and hope to see him maintain his unbeaten record in the valuable 7f handicap at Goodwood despite a 12lbs rise for that fluent success. He looked a Group class performer at Ascot and the Jersey Stakes will be next one would imagine if he passes today’s examination.There was 13/8 about on Friday but he is into a shade of odds on at 10/11 with William Hill at the time of posting.
At Fakenham on Sunday, I am sweet on the chance of Buster Thomas (4.10) if the word soft – given as good on Friday morning – does not figure in the official going description. The selection – 5s with William Hill – failed to get home over an additional quarter of a mile last time and can race from the same mark in Norfolk.