Night On Earth really catches the eye here off 2lb lower than earlier this month when he ran a huge race at Newmarket. He was isolated on the near rail but looked dangerous for quite some time until fading in the final furlong. I felt that performance was noteworthy and clear proof the 4-year-old is in fine form.
He ran quite well a number of times this year already, whether that be on turf or the All-Weather, including two victories at Kempton and Lingfield and even more importantly in my view, a strong third place in April at Newmarket off a 95 mark while running to topspeed 94 that day.
He couldn’t quite match those heights in the following weeks and months but had mitigating factors more than once. As a consequence he’s now down to a rating of 89.
On the basis of those forms from earlier this season he’s seriously well-handicapped; in the light of his recent eye-catching run he’s almost certainly in with a huge shout in this race.
The cherry on the cake is the booking of Frederick Larson, who claims 5lb. There aren’t many negatives – if one, then there’s the draw that may prove tricky, depending how the pace plays out. On the other hand he usually starts well, can be ang up with the pace, and that can be an advantage at this speed favouring track.
Even though this is a typically competiive and hot sprint Handicap at Glorious Goodwood, not many appear overly well threated off their current marks. Night On Earth is one of very few who ticks most boxes. For me he is significantly overpriced here.
No fifth winner in a row. Sophiesticate got close. Really close. Despite drifting out to 12/1 SP. Beaten a neck in the end after a brave performance. This was probably her best chance to win for the next while.
Mellecamp got off to a quick start, led the field and did simply too much too soon. He ran out of gas from two furlongs out and hang quite badly under pressure too. The 7.5f trip was borderline stamina wise but I maintain hope that he can win a race and is better than this mark, which may be reduced even further now. A stiff 6 furlongs looks ideal.
3.10 Beverley: Class 6 Handicap, 5f
Canaria Prince caught the eye a number of times with some brave front-running performances. In a competitive 20-runner handicap at Thirsk when last seen he produced his usual game effort but didn’t quite last the 6 furlongs as the winner and runner-up came from off the pace.
He bumped into some well-handicapped horses lately too. Especially the close runner-up effort behind Elzaal in May at Carlisle rates strongly in my book.
That’s when he tried the minimum trip for only the second time in his career, and also the last time until now. He had excuses on his final start in 2021, the only other run over five furlongs.
Back in May at Carlisle they came clear of the rest of the field and Canaria Prince showed that he has the speed for 5 furlongs but also has a lovely attitude as he always fights well to the line.
Fast ground, a stiff 5 furlongs at Beverley from a good draw looks an ideal combination. If he runs to same level of form as in recent weeks he’s a solid chance, if he can find a tiny bit of improvement for track and trip then he’s probably hard to beat in a poor field.
The three-year-olds Primo and Chant For More rate the biggest threats. Primo in particular, comes here in great form and may be able to defy a hefty rise in the mark, though isn’t one to trust fully and can mess up at the start.
I imagine Mokaman to jump out the quickest, grabbing the rail and setting a fast pace, with Canaria Prince tracking him. There should be no hard luck story for him at all, the race is set up for him to win.
Red Evelyn ran a big race from the front for the most part over a mile the last time at Yarmouth when fading in the end to finish a good third behind a well handicapped LTO winner and wasn’t knocked about it when it became clear better than third isn’t possible on the day, possibly with another day in mind.
This day should be here at Wolverhampton. Perfect conditions for the 4-year-old filly who was placed twice in three attempts over this course and distance in the past off higher marks.
She can attack the race from the pimp slot with Kirby in the saddle. She stays a mile, given her sole career victory came over that trip, but her best performances all came over the shorter 7 furlongs distance.
She ran twice to topspeeds above her current handicap mark, both times at Lingfield on the polytrack over 7f. She also was only a neck beaten off 58 at Wolverhampton over 7f furlongs. This year alone on the All-Weather she now ran to topspeeds of 53 (2x) and 57. She’s ready to win.
I must say the market looks a bit iffy for the race with a big discrepancy between mainstream bookies and exchanges. That might change during the day but I can only go by what my eyes tell me and that is this filly won’t get many better chances to get her head in front.
There is no doubt that King Of War looks potentially well in under a penalty given top apprentice Benoit De La Sayette takes five pounds off. He may well be hard to beat. On the other the overall record of the horse doesn’t give total trust in him backing this latest performance up at a short price.
In any case one who I feel can be perhaps even better handicapped is Ideal Guest. Still a maiden after ten starts and only one place to show. Yet I couldn’t have envisaged a better scenario for this lad. How can that be?
In my mind this son of Shalaa hasn’t been helping himself very much, often pulling incredibly hard and throwing races away as a result. However, his form this season is quite competitive. He ran fine races at Windsor in April, and Yarmouth the last two times – both strong forms.
Last time out over a mile he didn’t stay the trip in softish conditions after fighting for his head for the first half of the race. If I look back to his penultimate run at the same venue over 7 furlongs, though, that specific piece of form is quite strong and he only went down late as the field entered the final furlong.
The handicapper gives Ideal Guest a tremendous chance now. Having dropped him to 56, a whopping 7lb lower than at Yarmouth in May. He also drops down to 7 furlongs again, which can only help. Fast ground should suit.
The key question is always: can he settle? I reckon if he can hen can he is potentially 10lb better than this current mark. The way the pace looks in this race will do him a huge favour. Nearly everyone likes to get on with things.
I don’t think he has to lead. He often lead because he pulled his way to the front. With plenty of other runners keen to move forward, he might find a good pace to chase this time, and that in turn can help him settle. If it does he wins this.
Obviously the recent yard and jockey form are rather poor. But over the last twelve months Margarson/Queally had an 18% strike rate and with tough Royal Ascot this month impacting their form I am not overly concerned.
Dreaming drops in class and will have a better chance to produce a competitive performance over this trip than the big price suggests, I think.
The three-year-old gelding is still quite unexposed over trips beyond 6 furlongs as well as on turf. He also comes down to a good mark, after having excuses this year on a number of occasions.
He was heavily bumped right out of the gates at Kempton the last time, subsequently didn’t look comfortable and never landed a blow, although this was quite a strong class 4 Handicap, too.
He seriously caught the eye two back at the same course over 7 furlongs, when he was caught wide giving ground away all the time; after hitting a flat spot he rattled home much the strongest in the closing stages, suggesting the trip won’t be an issue and a mile isn’t out of question either.
He tried the 8 furlongs distance once, on his seasonal debut at Newmarket where he stumbled badly over two furlongs from home.
I don’t like to make excuses repeatedly for a horse but feel this lad is better than what he has shown this year. The market isn’t fond of him, but he’s a totally wrong price if on a going day, with the 3lb claim of Georgia Dobie rather useful too.
10pts win – Dreaming @ 19.5
8.10 Newbury: Class 5 Handicap, 7f
I am tracking the filly Ebtsama since her eyecatching February runner-up effort at Southwell. She caught the eye a number of times subsequently, yet the right day to back her didn’t materalise, yet.
Today looks a solid opportunity. She has no hope according to the betting but that couldn’t be further from the truth, if – and that’s the key – she can settle.
The hood is on and has to make a difference, especially over this trip. It’s not a given that there’s a blistering pace today, and that’s a clear danger to her chances. She may pull her race away as she has done on a number of occasions before. However, 7 furlongs should be, in theory, the ideal trip.
Ebtsama is completely unexposed on turf, apart from a promising Newmarket debut last year in June. She raced on the All-Weather ever since. She pulled way too hard last time out at Kempton but produced a nice change of gear in the home straight, which petered out as she ran out of energy, nonetheless giving the impression she has got talent.
She gave this impression in her other three starts this year too. The aforementioned runner-up performance at Southwell looks good with the form franked, and she was unlucky the next time at Lingfield, not getting a clear run, which was also the story at Wolverhampton. On that evidence alone she should/could/would be any number of pounds higher in the ratings today if things would have gone more her way.
Down to a mark of 71, she takes on older rivals for the first time today. As bottom-weight I think she has a good opportunity today to be competitive as long as she settles.
Possibly the race of the week? Some exciting prospects go head to head, no more so than 2000 Guineas winner Coroebus. That form is the gold standard for obvious reasons.
It’s hard to pick a negative looking at the son of Dubawi. He won really well at Newmarket, confirmed the hype and clearly is high class as 107 topspeed rating backed up that day.
At this point in time, though, it’s not impossible that one or two others in this field can improve to the same sort of level. It’s from that perspective I feel he can be taken on at odds-on.
For me the obvious choice – and seriously overpriced – is recent German 2000 Guineas winner Maljoom. He overcame a sluggish start, having to make up a lot of ground in the home straight; the eventual runner-up got first run. But he found plenty under pressure, and the phrase “powered home” is quite fitting, eventually winning perhaps a shade cosily.
That was only his third career start. He won all three of them. He clearly improved with each run. There is every chance he can improve again.
A concern is his poor starting habit. Getting too far behind today will kill his chances I reckon. This is a big field and I doubt he’ll get a trouble free run if turning for home last. At the same time he’s got tactical speed and hopefully learns with experience.
Another concern is that this is his fourth race since his debut at the end of March. Both points are relevant question marks but risks worth taking at the prices.
10pts win – Maljoom @ 16
6.45 Beverley: Class 5 Handicap, 8.5f
Monsieur Jumbo drops down to class 5 and headgear is finally applied. This looks an ideal opportunity for the 3-year-old to strike. He’s obviously quite a tricky sort to handle but there is hope with cheek-pieces he can improve, as well as for the trip he’s still unexposed.
It the time of the year when the younger horses tend to take over and dominate against the older. And this big boy shouldn’t have an issue against those older horses in this race.
He caught my eye two back at Wolverhampton messing up at the starting gate as so often, but rattling home in impressive style. He also finished strongly the other day at Nottingham when moving up to 8.5 furlongs, suggesting the trip is no bother.
The jockey on board is an obvious concern, likely low on confidence, having as poor a strike rate as I have with my selections this month.
Tangled is the obvious danger. He really caught the eye the last time too; now down to a sexy mark. I hope he’s one for another day. I feel the additional half furlong doesn’t quite suit him. But he’s seriously well handicapped on past form.
Of course as my form goes, I missed the big prices at around 8/1 this morning. Too late…. still what’s on offer represents value (in my book).
10pts win – Monsieur Jumbo @ 6.5
8.15 Beverley: Class 6 Handicap, 8.5f
Highlight Reel has shown enough this year to suggest he can win a poor class 6 Handicap. He ran with plenty of credit in recent weeks, especially at Wetherby, when he was quite unlucky not to finish closer.
He wasn’t disgraced the next two times, he confirmed his wellbeing at Redcar with a solid front-running performance twelve days ago,
He won of a mark of 47 over 10 furlongs last year, running to topspeed 50. I would argue these most recent performances are reason enough to believe he’s capable to run to a similar level of form.
The 8.5 furlong trip is no concern, he won over 7 furlongs and can stretch out over 1m 2f too. He’s got a good draw and won at this course before. The 5lb claim of Jony Peate is highly valuable.