1.40 Newmarket – Bahrain Trophy
To my eye not the best running of the Group Three Bahrain Trophy. There looks to be plenty of exposed runners in, the majority of them already having run four times this season alone – without showing potentially top class form. The race’s two unexposed runners are Dare To Achieve and Testudo. The race looks to be at the mercy of the former mentioned as his price suggests, but I feel there is better value to be had with TESTUDO. This well-bred Sangster family owned colt is by an up-and-coming stallion in Duke Of Marmalade out of a former Lingfield Oaks Trial winner, Santa Sophia. After just two starts this grey is still an unknown quantity. He made his debut at Newbury in a hot maiden won by Royal Ascot winner, Remote. Drawn wide he was forced to be held-up well in rear in a race where it paid to race handy. He ran well however considering he was given a tender and educational ride. He broke his maiden in next start at Sandown where he was much more clued in. He broke smartly, too well in fact and was very keen early. He eventually settled down and raced nicely, travelling well. Once asked to lengthen, he did so and hit the line strong winning a shade cosily. There has been mixed messages from the form, but I feel he was much the best horse in the race. He has an official rating of 88, but I’m confident he’s better than that. He comes into this race fresher than most and open to more improvement. I still feel Dare To Achieve is the one to beat though. The selection has 11 lengths to make up on their maiden run against each other at Newbury and while I feel he will be a lot closer I’m not sure he can make up that amount of ground off the back of one run. Therefore, we’ll play in the ‘betting without (Dare To Achieve)’ market.
1pt each-way Testudo @7-1 ‘betting without fav’ (Paddy Power)
2.10 Newmarket – Portland Place Properties July Stakes
In the July Stakes I’m keen to take on the favourite Sir John Hawkins, who I think is a little short in the market. Although he looks a classy runner I do feel seven furlongs would see him at his best and when some of today’s rivals hit top gear he may not have the raw pace to go with them. The two juveniles I like are Kevin Ryan’s Astaire and Richard Fahey’s Canyari. With ASTAIRE’s form looking just the stronger, to my eye, at this stage, he’s the one I’m willing to side with. Kevin Ryan is a trainer to note with juvenile sprinters and hiss well-bred (dam unraced half-sister to 7 winners including Bannister (Gimcrack winner) and Roo (fairly useful sprinting 2yo), from the family of Dead Certain) son of Intense Focus looks to be pretty useful. I was impressed with the early speed and professionalism he showed when winning at York. He travelled really well and was last off the bridle before going on to win with a big prick of his ears, indicating there may be more in the locker if needed. While quite a few in the race have since failed to run the third horse, Jallota, who he takes on again today, gives the form a real solid look. Jallota had the benefit of experience, but was put in his place by the winner. The Mick Channon horse has since gone on to run some good races, winning one in style before running a cracker in the Coventry Stakes at Royal Ascot. You’d hope with normal improvement he could easily fend off that rival now and step up further. I’m hoping he can run well in what looks to be a competitive race. Hopefully Neill Callan doesn’t get caught up in the early speed duel that may materialise.
1pt win Astaire @7-1 (general)