Amazing Speed can live up to her name

Wet Dundalk Polytrack

Punchestown is truly alive! Some great jump racing all along, though a shame that Hurricane Fly didn’t quite get home strongly enough to beat old foe Jezki in the big 3m Hurdle. He remains a hero nonetheless, but probably deserves his retirement now. Anyway, betting wise I concentrate on the flat these days and there is a very interesting maiden at Lingfield’s All-Weather taking place….

4.10 Lingfield: Maiden 7 furlongs

A hot little race – I’m most interested in Godolphin’s Amazing Speed, though. This big, scopy filly is really well bred and no doubt will get much further in time. She should be good enough to get off the mark in a maiden over the seven furlong trip, however I hope. She really caught my eye in a competitive maiden over the same distance at Newmarket during the Craven meeting.

She didn’t quite enjoy the run of the race from her position further back in the field and was a bit short of room around 2f out. She had to switch in order to get a clear run but showed greenness, which is no surprise on her debut run. But the way she finished the race under a light hands and heels ride was utterly impressive.

Jockey James Doyle has only this one ride tomorrow, and that in itself is telling. They must rate the filly highly and I would hope for a big performance tomorrow, also given the fact that she should relish the All-Weather given her pedigree.

Amazing Speed @ 2/1 Paddy Power – 10pts win

Eisenhower The Dark Horse

Naas

With the rain clouds hanging over Leinster currently, it’s not quite clear how the ground end up tomorrow night. this unclear situation makes this race an intriguing contest. There were some showers here today but still plenty of sunshine and I would certainly hope for pretty much the same tomorrow which would mean we have something like good to yielding, or yielding at worst ground wise I would imagine.

Even that would probably count against short favourite Anthem Alexander. She really needs it fast and may not be knocked over here anyway as bigger fruits are up for grabs sooner rather or later. Any rain will be appreciated by veteran sprinter Maarek of course. He used to do well as a fresh horse and 5f is his trip, but maybe it won’t be quite as soft enough for him? He also seems to start to regress last season. Not to forget he also has to give weight away to all his rivals here.

Regressing – that can’t be said about improving Great Minds. A shade unlucky on his seasonal reappearance at the Curragh, he made subsequently no mistake at Cork in Listed company. He drops slightly in trip and it isn’t as soft as he would like it too. On the basis of that he may be opposable, but he’s an exciting up and coming sprinter, so has to be in with a big chance.

Ger Lyons lightly raced filly Ainippe could be anything. She won a listed race over 5f last season and is Group 3 placed. Ground is a worry though. All her form comes on fast ground. Richard Hannon travelles over with Musical Comedy. Surely not only for the lovely green grass. Drops to the minimum trip has to work, which remains to be seen if it does. Ground will be fine for him.

Three year old filly Dikta Del Mar makes her Ireland debut after a decent juvenile campaign in France. She has plenty of soft ground form and could be anything. Jamesie is hard to fancy over this trip. It probably will be a bit too sharp. he may prefers a quicker surface too.

Aiden O’Brien’s lightly raced Eisenhower is the dark horse. This three year old colt looks big and scopey. He was green on his debut earlier this month, dropped then to 5f to win a maiden at Cork. He still looked like an inexperienced individual with plenty to learn but surely will have done so in that race. He is actually bred for further but showed plenty of speed and is a half-brother to a French sprinter who was Listed placed.

As a War front son he probably wouldn’t want it too soft but seemed to act perfectly on yielding at Gowran Park. Interestingly he has an entry for the King’s Stand Stakes at Royal Ascot. So connections must clearly believe he is quick enough. Plenty of improvement to come from this well bred individual, and while I usually find it hard for three year old sprinters against older hoses, he looks nice and big and may make the weight he receives from his rivals really count here.

7.10 Naas: Woodlands Stakes (listed)
Eisenhower @ 10/1 Bet365 – 5pts win

Big chance on Handicap debut for Victoriously

DSC_2232

Plenty of unexposed types in this race and naturally this can be a bit like a guessing game. That says I feel the Brian Meehan trained Victoriously is potentially underestimated on his Handicap debut.

The Azamour colt ran a dismal race on his seasonal reappearance in a hot maiden at Newbury earlier this week. Probably a performance to ignore and he should strip fitter this time. It’s more interesting what he has done as a juvenile last season.

Victoriously  improved massively from his debut run last summer when he finished a good third over 7.5f at Lingfield’s turf. He was very green throughout the race that day, most of the time without cover too but showed a bit of talent the way he made progress from 3f out. That was enough to suggest he could turn into a nice individual and was put away for the rest of the year as he was always one who should improve with age given his pedigree.

Pedigree is the key: He tackles 12f for the first time here. It’s quite a dramatic step up in trip but connections must feel this is the best thing to do to give him a chance to win. He is out of a 7.5f Listed race winning mare but she is by Monsun and in general there is plenty of stamina on both sire and dam side, which suggests the step up in trip is the right move indeed. He has a very good chance to stay the trip, particularly on a sound surface.

He will be first time blinkered tomorrow. That may help to sharpen him up. Most interestingly is his open handicap mark. A moderate 67 gives him every chance and could underestimate his true merit, particularly over a trip more suitable.

8.00 Windsor: Class 5 Handicap, 1m 3f 135y
Victoriously @ 14/1 Bet365 – 5pts Win

Plenty to like about unexposed Mohaayed

DSC_1414

Nice little race, with some interesting individuals going to post. Aiden O’Brien’s Royal Navy Ship proves popular since the yard finally starts to get into top gear. His runner-up effort in last years Group 3 Killavullan Stakes reads a fair piece of form, though none of those in the race has backed it up actually. Hard to know what to expect from this War Front son here.

Zafilani finished with in the Ballysax Stakes earlier this month, in front of Derby fancy John F Kennedy. The merit of this form is debatable but the better ground here should suit. Prologue looks very hard to fancy on form.

I’m very sweet on Mohaayed in this race, though. He’s one of the horses on my Horses To Follow List, and while his seasonal reappearance in the 2.000 Guineas trail at Leopardstown was nothing to be too impressed about, he still finished a fair third in a very hot race behind two smart individuals. I believe he is bound to improve dramatically for this run, for many reasons.

It was only his third career start and he still learns the game. He wasn’t quite as green as last season, but clearly further progress is to come in that department. He won on his second start last year in very impressive fashion, despite wandering in the closing stages, and beating a smart Ballydoyle horse in third. He’ll relish the better ground at Gowran Park I imagine as he didn’t look to be able to put in his best effort on soft at Leopardstown in the Guineas trail. And let’s not forget that he steps up in trip now. Middle distance shall be his game I believe.

So, plenty to like about his chance. He should have plenty more to come and if he wins this nicely then his next target is very likely the Dante. Says I’m really looking forward to see this Prendergast inmate perform to his best tomorrow.

5.35 Gowran Park: Conditions Stakes, 1m 1f 100y
Mohaayed @ 5/2 Paddy Power – 10pts Win

Symbolic Star can improve big time!

DSC_0852

This intriguing Handicap over one mile for three year olds looks not like an easy race to call, however I can’t let Godolphin’s Symbolic Star go for a big looking price. A cautious bet, yes, as it is not quite clear what to expect from some of the others, but cautious only to an extend. Let’s take a look at his rivals here first.

The Richard Hannon inmate Maftoon won on the Chelmsford All-Weather when last seen. He did that nicely and progressed from his juvenile season. But now switched to turf of a mark off 86 in a hot race much more is required. He looks a bit smalish as well, I can’t see him as a well handicapped individual.

Lingfield scorer Alfajer makes much more appeal. She won really well back in October 2014 and the step up to 1m should suit. Botti has his horses well at this early stage of the season, so wouldn’t be a surprise to see her go close. She’s drifting in the betting though, which is a slight worry.

Grand Spirit finished a good deal beaten at Brighton on his seasonal reappearance. The form works out well with the winner hacking up subsequently. He should improve but that says he has to if he wants to go close here.

Paco Boy son Sarsted won a poor maiden last season. There might be more to come. Darshini could easily be a better three year old but has been off the track for a long time. Darrington drops in trip which will help. He’s interesting as the feather weight with a 5lb claimer in the saddle.

That brings me back to Symbolic Star. He steps up to 1m now, which should clearly suit on pedigree. An opening mark off 85 looks stiff at first glance, but if assessing his form a bit closer, one has to get the impression that it could also be fair, maybe even lenient.

On his debut he finished a close 3rd over too short 5f in a very hot maiden, with the first and second franking the form. The runner-up won a Group 3 subsequently for example. His success in a rather poor Wolverhampton maiden over 7f was visually very impressive then. He seemed to have wintered well and the change of gear was excellent. In my eyes he has the most potential of them all in this field, and if he can cope with the quick ground, he should be hard to beat.

7.00 Doncaster: Class 3 Handicap, 3yo, 1m
Symbolic Star @ 3/1 Bet365 – 5pts win

Thanks AP!

It’s all out and over – Anthony McCoy has officially retired from race riding. His long career has come to an end at Sandown Park today. He finished in third place in his last ever race on appropriately named Box Office. When he jumped off, a visible emotional Anthony McCoy was no longer an active jockey.

Much has been said over the course of the recent days, weeks and months since AP announced his retirement towards the end of the season. That says there isn’t much that I could add to it that hasn’t been said before already. But one last thing:

Enjoy your retirement Anthony. You’re a legend. I hope you’re in a good place and you’ll find plenty of things that keep you happy and occupied after a long life of race riding. It ain’t be easy. But you champ, you can do it. #Thanks AP!

Professor can bounce back at Haydock

DSC_2305

Open looking contest. Not many make appeal on their current Handicap rating. Some of the bigger prices are interesting, so is Lincoln expected to run bigger dropped in trip. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Emell improved either. But a chance is taken on Professor.

The Michal Attwater inmate was disappointing at Meydan in recent month, but performed with loads of credit last season in hot races off higher higher marks. He dropped down to a rating of 101 now and judged on old form should be very competitive here over trip and ground to suit.

He loves the Haydock track, has won three times from five runs here including a CD success. Professor was a strong winner of a Conditions Stakes race last summer, having some fair pattern class performers behind him. He also was placed the Wookingham Handicap of a mark off 108. Anything close to those performances, and he has a big chance today.

3.30 Haydock: Handicap (Class 2) 7f
Professor @ 12/1 Bet365 – 5pts Win

Horse Racing Around The Globe

%d bloggers like this: