Haydock – Saturday
Fantasy Keeper – He loves to get his foot in and got off the mark last time out on similar ground that he will face today. Up 6lb for that but plenty more to come from him. Ryan takes the ride and we’re confident of another big run.
2 point win at 3/1
2 point win at 6/1
Haydock – Saturday
MATERIALIST will appreciate the step up in trip and is in great form. The ground is a slight unknockn but hopefully should handle it and if he does he will go well.
STONEYFORD LANE step up to 6f should suit as will the ground. Tough race but every chance if he improves on his return run.
DANDYLEEKIE caught the eye behind Honeysuckle Lil at Hamilton earlier this week. He raced away from the two horses that were the eventual one-two and didn’t get much cover. He runs off the same mark and has winning C&D form here off this mark on bad ground.
ECCLESTON hasn’t won for a couple of years but has had problems and seems fit and well now. Has his ground so hopefully will improve and run well.
BATEEL travelled over well and is in good order. Likes to get her toe in, the more rain the better.
ABSOLUTELY SO will love the ground and ran well here last time. In great form and must have a good chance.
BRETON ROCK will be at home in the conditions. Andrea gets on well with him and he should go well despite the penalty.
MJJACK has course form and also on heavy ground.
IONISATION is coming to hand and has some decent soft ground form.
Haydock – Saturday
2.20 – Betway Sprint Handicap Cl4 (3yo 0-80) 6f ITV4
5/5 – Returned 10/1 or shorter in the betting
5/5 – Finished in the top 4 last time out
5/5 – Rated between 78-85
5/5 – Had only won once before
4/5 – Irish bred
4/5 – Winners drawn between 6-11 (inc)
4/5 – Favourites placed in the top three
4/5 – Carried 9-0 or more in weight
4/5 – Had won over 6f before
3/5 – Won last time out
3/5 – Had only run once before
2/5 – Winning favourites
The average winning SP in the last 5 runnings is 11/2
Trainer William Haggas has a 33% record with his 3 year-olds at the track
VERDICT: Ryan Moore is a decent jockey booking for the Mick Appleby-trained Fantasy Keeper and after the way this 3 year-old powered home to break his maiden last time at Nottingham caught the eye. This rise in grade means more is needed, but a 6lbs rise in the ratings doesn’t look harsh. He’ll love the ground and it goes without saying Moore is the icing on the cake – a big player. But the slightly more interesting runner here looks to be the William Haggas-trained PENNSYLVANIA DUTCH. This 3 year-old is 1-from-1 after winning over course and distance here last September and there should be more to come. The Haggas team are going well at the moment, but, more importantly, the yard boast an impressive 33 % record with their 3 year-olds at the track. Full Intention Maakaasib, and Savannah’s Dream are others to note from stables that also have a decent record with their runners at the course.
2.55 – Betway Dash Handicap Cl3 (4yo 0-95) 6f ITV4
No previous runnings
Trainer Tom Dascombe is 14 from 71 (20%) with his 4+ year-olds at the track
Trainer Mick Easterby is just 2 from 32 (6%) with his 4+ year-olds at the track
Trainer David Barron is just 2 from 38 (5%) with his 4+ year-olds at the track
Trainer Ruth Carr is just 5 from 66 (8%) with his 4+ year-olds at the track
Jockey Clifford Lee is 4 from 10 (40%) with riding 4+ year-olds at the track
Jockey James Sullivan is 1 from 46 (2%) with riding 4+ year-olds at the track
VERDICT: A competitive sprint handicap here to take in. Ryan Moore’s mount, Holiday Magic, will be popular with punters with the former champion riding and ran well at Epsom last week to think he can go close. But you just feel he’s in the handicapper’s grip at the moment and with his last win coming off an 8lb lower mark then he’s still got a bit to prove off this rating. The Ruth Carr team are just 5 from 66 with their older horses at the track and the fact jockey James Sullivan is 1 from 46 riding 4+ year-olds here means Cosmic Chatter is overlooked. Dandyleekie, Eccleston, Snap Shots and Eltezam are the four past course and distance winners in the field so are certainly ones for the shortlist. While with a 40% record riding older horses at the track then jockey Clifford Lee’s mount Taexali would be interesting too. But the call here is REFLEKTOR. From the Tom Dascombe yard, this 4 year-old blew away the cobwebs last time at Chester after a long lay-off while the softer ground here will be to his liking. He’s been dropped a few pounds for that last run too, plus the Dascombe team boast a decent 20% record with their older horses here at Haydock.
3.30 Betway Pinnacle Stakes (Group 3) Cl1 (4yo+) 1m3f ITV4
14/14 – Had won over at least 10f before
12/14 – Returned 9/1 or shorter in the betting
12/14 – Finished in the top 3 last time out
11/14 – Aged 4 years-old
11/14 – Rated 92 or higher
10/14 – Placed favourites
10/14 – Had won over 1m4f before
9/14 – Drawn in stall 5 or lower
9/14 – Came from the top 3 in the betting
5/14 – Had run at Haydock before
4/14 – Won last time out
3/14 – Winning favourites
2/14 – Trained by Roger Varian
2/14 – Trained by John Gosden
2/14 – Ridden by Frankie Dettori
The average winning SP in the last 10 years is 11/2
VERDICT: It’s hard to get away from the Roger Varian-trained AJMAN PRINCESS here. This fast-improving 4 year-old was an impressive winner at Goodwood last time out and with almost all of the key trends on her side she looks the safest call. She had the Stoute-trained Dubka well back that last day too and although that horse is clearly better than that running she was still beaten a long way and I know who I’d rather be siding with. The Varian yard are also going great guns at the moment, plus the icing on the cake is that they’ve also landed this race twice in recent times (2011, 2012). Andrea Atzeni gets the leg-up, while with form in soft ground, when second in the Ribblesdale at Royal Ascot last season, then I can’t see an issue with the underfoot conditions either. Of the rest, I’ve already mentioned Dubka, but this horse has a bit to prove at present. Yes, maybe the Goodwood track didn’t suit last time and the softer ground is a plus, but with only handicap wins to her name she needs to step forward. Laganore, who was 4th in the race 12 months ago, will be popular too, coming over from the shrewd Tony Martin Irish yard. She was second last time in a Group 3 at the Curragh, but the big question surrounding her is the trip – all her wins to date have been over shorter – and she’s already been beaten once in the race. But of those at a bigger price the James Fanshawe-trained Return Ace might have the most improvement to come. This lightly-raced 5 year-old returns after a 201 day break, but she’s gone well fresh in the past and have good form with cut in the ground. She’s got a bit to find at the ratings, but with only 6 career outing and the fact the Fanshawe horses do tend to improve with age then there should be more to come.
4.05 Betway John Of Gaunt Stakes (Group 3) Cl1 7f ITV4
14/14 – Rated 107 or higher
13/14 – Had raced within the last 4 weeks
12/14 – Drawn in stall 6 or lower
11/14 – Came from the top three in the betting
11/14 – Returned 9/1 or shorter in the betting
11/14 – Had won over 7f before
10/14 – Aged 4 or 5 years-old
9/14 – Favourites placed
9/14 – Placed in the top 3 last time out
9/14 – Drawn in stall 3 or lower
8/14 – Had won at least 4 times before
4/14 – Had run at the track before
4/14 – Winning favourites (1 joint)
3/14 – Ridden by Ryan Moore
2/14 – Trained by Sir Michael Stoute
2/14 – Aged 9 years-old
Home Of The Brave won the race 12 months ago
The average winning SP in the last 10 years is 9/2
VERDICT: Much of the talk in the build-up to the race surrounded last year’s winner – Home Of The Brave – but connections pulled the horse on Thursday, which has given the contest a slightly more open feel to it. Mitchum Swagger would be of interest if building on his seventh in the Group One Lockinge last time out. That Newbury run was only his second run back this season so there should be more to come, while a certain Ryan Moore has been booked to ride. This 5 year-old has decent form in the ground and with 10 of the last 14 winners aged 4 or 5 then – along with Growl (5) – is one of only two that tick that key age stat. Add in that the David Lanigan camp have a decent 29% record at the track with their older horses then that’s another big plus. Of the rest, Breton Rock has been 4th, 7th and 2nd in past runnings of this race and is sure to make his presence felt again, but having tried three times in this race before and not won, then at the age of 7 why will that change this time? Growl would be interesting on his second in the Group One Champions Sprint at Ascot last season, but this step up to 7f would be a concern and the Fahey camp are actually only 5 from their last 140 4+ year-old runners at the track. But the selection here for me is SO BELOVED. This David O’Meara-trained 7 year-old was third in the race 12 months ago – only beaten 2 ¼ lengths – while his track form here at Haydock reads an impressive 1-1-3-3. The soft ground is fine and despite being well beaten by Home Of The Brave at Leicester two starts ago he had to race on his own on the stands’ side rail so that run can easily be ignored. He’s since run a close third here in a Listed race and with those two runs having blown away the winter cobwebs then he looks a solid chance of being in the shake-up again.