Doncaster Racecourse

Four flat cards on Monday including a seven-race card at Kempton this evening.

In the 11f Novice Stakes I hope to see Cu Chulainn (7.30) go one better than when runner up on debut at Lingfield for Brian Meehan over ten furlongs. The selection cost 425,000 gns as a yearling and is related to three winners from six to twelve furlongs. He was ridden by William Buick on debut, but his title rival Oisin Murphy takes over in the saddle tonight. The winning time was nothing special at Lingfield but the third has come out and won and Brian Meehan’s charge gets the vote. He is a shade of odds on at 10/11 with Boylesports.

Alezan has a good draw in stall one in the 7f fillies’ handicap, but I am not convinced she will confirm Sandown form with Henry Candy’s Pearl Bay who did not have the best of runs at the Esher track last time and has more to offer.

The vote, however, goes to the well-bred Beloved (8.00) who remains a maiden after five starts but ran her best race yet when second at Newbury in a first-time hood back in August. Oisin Murphy takes over in the saddle on Ed Walker’s 3-y-old – 4s with William Hill – who is the half-sister to eight winners including the top-class Japanese Derby winner Deep Brilliante. Connections must believe 7f is her trip although her breeding – by Frankel – suggests otherwise.

The ground was given as good to soft at Yarmouth on Sunday morning, but another dry day was forecast, and conditions are likely to be good for today’s eight-race card.

I remember being disappointed with the run of Reina Del Mar (2.05) when she was third at York when last seen back in July but the pair who finished in front of her – Chalk Stream and Eclipse De Lunar – have four subsequent wins between them and the selection can race off the same mark this afternoon.

The excellent Tom Marquand takes over in the saddle for the first time and, after just six career starts, there is more to come from a filly who runs in the same colours as Beloved. I hope it is a good day for connections. The ew recommendation is 5/1 4 places with William Hill.

William Buick has a strong book of rides at Wolverhampton with Toromona likely to be a short price market leader in the 3-y-old Maiden over the extended mile for Godolphin. Of more interest is Infrared (4.00) who finished third at Sandown on debut over the minimum trip and is bred to appreciate the step up to 6f today.

The selection will get further in time, but he was beaten less than a length at the Esher track when slowly away from the worst of the draw. He is entitled to come on for the experience although he was well backed on debut. He has another moderate draw to overcome in stall seven today, but I feel connections have found an excellent opportunity for their son of Pivotal. The selection is 13/8 with 10Bet.

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