2.25 Newbury: St Simon Stakes (Group 3), 1m 4f
Hard to put much face into any of the nine horses – although Romsdal, judged on his placed efforts, would be an obvious pick. But his strike rate is poor, and the fact that he only won on the Kempton All-Weather and never really excelled in similar races like this today means he is one to oppose.
Favourite filly Koora is a likeable, lightly raced sort with room for further improvement. But given what she has done so far it’s impossible to see any value in her 5/2 price tag.
I like Rawaki from the older horses. He has a profile to do well here, if in the right mood. You definitely can’t rule out progressive three year old filly Melodious either, though she has to prove that she can win on this level over a trip that far.
The most intriguing contender, and clearly the one with the most scope for improvement, is three times raced Moderah. She comes into this race as a relatively fresh individual, having only two starts this season. She made a big impression when getting off the mark last month in a Leicester maiden. Travelling all over her modest rivals, finding plenty when given a tiny bit of reign in the final furlong.
Obviously she has it all to prove, stepping up dramatically in trip. But with the fair chance of improvement this seemingly talented individual makes loads of appeal to me. In the context of the race I believe she is too big a price.
Moderah @ 6/1 Bet365 – 5pts Win