Most of our selections ran well yesterday but only Brorocco returned us place money when he finished second at Epsom. At the same track Brilliant Vanguard made up a lot of ground to finish fifth and Right Action tried to come from too far back when finishing in midfield. We were right to oppose Wild Illusion in the Oaks but unfortunately we got the wrong O’Brien horse with Bye Bye Baby eventually finishing third; Give And Take never got involved, finishing in sixth. Manton Grange ran better than his finishing position suggests on his reappearance at Doncaster and looks one to be interested in next time. Hawridge Flyer was beaten a head at Goodwood, rallying well once he was headed.
2.00 – Epsom – Indomeneo. 1.25 pts e/w. Available at 10/1. (Bet365 – 1/4 odds first 3)
A competitive three year old handicap over ten furlongs opens up the Epsom Derby card. Despite drifting in the early markets, preference is for Indomeneo. He had a relatively busy Juvenile campaign but he won four of his eight starts and showed a versatility toward ground conditions. He’s had a slower start to this campaign but he has improved with each start and was firmly back on track when winning narrowly at Ripon last time out. He has gone up three pounds for that effort but he endured a bit of traffic and, with a clear run, it’s likely he would’ve won even from his mark today. That was a career best on his 11th start and it’s possible he is capable of even better. He will probably need it against this opposition but the yard remain in good form and they had a wide margin winner here yesterday.
3.45 – Epsom:
Dark Shot. 2.5 pts win. Available at 6/1. (Betfair)
Blue De Vega. 1 pt e/w. Available at 14/1. (Betfair, Paddy Power – 1/5 odds first 5)
The Epsom Dash is always a spectacle over what is arguably the fastest five furlongs in the world. The strip nearest the stands rail was the place to be yesterday and it’s likely there will be more than a few hard luck stories as the runners scrimmage for the right to race on the quicker part of the track. Dark Shot only narrowly failed in this race last season and, of those toward the head of the market, he has the best draw in stall 19. He has been sold to current connections since and made an excellent start for them when going down very narrowly at York earlier this month. That was his first start for almost ten months and he has been raised just two pounds. That leaves him three pounds above the mark from which he ran in this last season and he has been aimed specifically at this race. He has only won two of his 21 starts but he is rarely far away at the business end of a race. Things may happen too quickly for Blue De Vega because he doesn’t look a natural sprinter. However if he can keep the trailblazers within sight he may be finishing better than most. He was only narrowly beaten over five furlongs on fast ground at Thirsk last time out and he is with a Trainer who knows how to develop and improve horses over sprint trips. The balance of his form suggests his current mark is very fair if he can produce it under these conditions.
4.30 – Epsom – Hazapour. 0.75 pts e/w. Available at 16/1. (Black Type)
5.15 – Epsom:
Golden Wolf. 1.75 pts win. Available at 17/2.
Star Of The East. 1.75 pts win. Available at 9/1.
5.50 – Epsom – Compas Scoobie. 0.5 pts e/w. Available at 33/1.
6.00 – Chepstow – Rahmah. 0.5 pts e/w. Available at 33/1.