A packed Friday includes quality flat racing at Newmarket, a fine jumps meet at Down Royal, and the commencement of the Breeders Cup at Del Mar. Stay tuned for a detailed post for the US, but we’re going to concentrate here on matters at HQ.
Normally a John Gosden or Charlie Appleby lightly raced 3yo in a handicap would be very much our cup of tea.
The 10f handicap (1310) features Johnny G’s Garrick as market leader. He was a good winner of his debut race in February, but wasn’t seen until a somewhat disappointing 7th of 12 when favourite at Windsor two weeks ago. He may well improve but assumptions of progress are pretty well baked into the odds but far from assured.
Appleby’s Celestial Spheres has had one run as a 3yo when s held 5th at Doncaster – but that was so long ago it was before the Grand National. He must have plenty to prove.
With doubts at the head of the market, the rock solid Tomahawk Kid, just a week after a wide margin Doncaster win, and with a 5lb claimer negating much of his 7lb rise, looks very much the value option.
His trainer Ian Williams is in hot form with six wins in the last fortnight and the Kid can make that seven.
The staying handicap (1530) sees a varied bunch of contenders riddled with flaws.
Big Easy won a Cesarewitch here but has become moody; Medburn Cutter has raced 13 times since last winning, placing 9 times and remaining stubbornly too high in the weights; Nelsons Touch looks high off 75 for an eight raced maiden even if he was 10th in the Cheltenham bumper; and Waiting for Richie broke his duck on the all-weather last time and is raised to a lifetime high rating that looks steep based on his turf form.
By elimination, Graceful Lady, four times a winner this season and only 4lbs higher than an easy York win, looks the one. She ran really well here when 5th in the Cesarewitch Trial from out of the handicap.
This lower mark and lower class can see her regain her mid season winning form.
Tomahawk Kid, (1310 Newmarket), 1pt win, 6/1 Bet365, BetVictor
Graceful Lady, (1530 Newmarket), 1pt win, 7/2 generally available
Tomahawk Kid & Graceful Lady, 1pt win double, approx 30/1
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