Tuesday 6.10pm Chester isn’t everyone’s cup of tea but since the introduction of the false rail at the top of the straight there have been fewer hard luck stories and the racing is always competitive. ITV should be able to get right amongst the action!
Wednesdays Lucky 15
Chester 1.50 REQUINTO DAWN 10/3 Ladbrokes 3/1 general
Chester 2.25 ENABLE 2/1 general
Chester 3.35 WHO DARES WINS 7/1 Coral 13/2 Ladbrokes+BetFred
Chester 4.05 STRADIVARIUS 7/4 general
and here’s why
Chester 1.50 REQUINTO DAWN His sire Requinto was a very sharp 2yo winning the Molecomb and the Flying Childers and he is currently producing quick 2yo’s and this one is fairly rapid. Beat solid yardstick The Love Doctor on debut in a C4 at Doncaster and then just failed to defy the penalty in a C3 at Musselburgh. No penalty in theis C2 Lily Agnes Conditions event, drawn 5 and Tony Hamilton keeps the ride.
Chester 2.25 ENABLE I liked her seasonal reappearance at Newbury when a staying on third to her speedier stable mate Shutter Speed. As a daughter of Nathaniel out of a Sadlers Well she should thrive at this mile and a half trip. The all-conquering O’Brien yard saddle Alluringly but her price reflects more on her connections than her form. Rich Legacy will do well to defy her 5llb penalty and the main danger may be Tansholpan who will also appreciate the longer trip and Andrea Atzeni rides for in-form Roger Varian.
Chester 3.35 WHO DARES WINS The Chester Cup is always a fun puzzle to solve. All sorts of ways to win the race but I like a single figure draw, proven stamina, laid out for race, in form horse, jockey and trainer. Three fit the bill for me.
Blakeney Point who will be popular with the “trends” boys, prominently ridden course winning 4yo drawn 1 who won last time out, and it’s hard to oppose Roger Charlton and 3lb claimer Keiron Shoemark in their current form.
Montaly for Andrew Balding and Oisin Murphy who’s second at Newbury when trying to give 12lbs to Sweet Selection over this trip on Good to Firm ground last July looks a strong piece of form. As a hold up horse in stall 2 Murphy will need to think in the saddle to get a run but following Blakeney Point to the home turn sounds a simple plan.
However the simplesimonsays pin has fallen on Who Dares Wins. Drawn in stall 7, he’s won on the Roodeye before, fit from a jumping campaign where he improved 9lbs last season, I think connections Alan King and Henry Ponsonby have had this race as an end plan for a while. The Swinton Hurdle at Haydock would have been a viable alternative. As long as Chester kicks off with the Good ground promised with a good covering of grass and Who Dares Wins and a hungry Tom Marquand must go close.
Chester 4.05 STRADIVARIUS John Gosden has an excellent crop of 3yo’s and although he thinks his fillies are better than his colts this one is a definite improver and although he has gone up 12lb for a comfortable six length Beverley victory he races prominently, should be ideally suited to Chester and I think there is more to come and this should be his last race at C3 level.
Churchill in the Derby. Play or lay?
You may like to consider the views of Kevin Blake (ATR and Final Furlong Podcast)
“For Coolmore, the racecourse is a showcase for potential stallions. That is what matters most. Sadler’s Wells was the sire that took Coolmore to the next level, but they had to be very patient to find a son of his that good enough to take his place.
As it turned out, it was in 2006 that Galileo emerged as the heir apparent to his father who would be retired from stud duties in 2008 due to declining fertility. Since then, Coolmore have raced an array of top-class sons of Galileo, but they have yet to find one that has gone to the next level as a sire for them.
Indeed, all the best sires that Galileo has produced such as Frankel, Teofilo and New Approach are standing at farms other than Coolmore.
While hopes will be high that the likes of Australia, Gleneagles or The Gurkha may be able to step up to that mark for Coolmore in the years ahead, until one of them duly does so, filling that place will be one of the main priorities for the Coolmore team.
As a Champion Two-Year-Old and now a 2000 Guineas winner with a remarkable physique, Churchill is on target to arguably be an even more attractive commercial proposition than any of those sons of Galileo currently standing at Coolmore, so the risk-reward ratio for taking a big chance in running him into the unknowns of the Derby is simply not attractive. In this day and age, a horse with his CV is unlikely to gain enough from winning the Derby as he would potentially lose from being beaten in it.
The decision is likely to be made even more straightforward given that what many considered to be the unsatisfactory nature of the 2000 Guineas has left questions unanswered, meaning that Churchill has more to gain from re-opposing the likes of Barney Roy and Al Wukair in either the Irish 2,000 Guineas and/or the St James’s Palace Stakes at Royal Ascot than he would have had his authority been in no doubt after the 2000 Guineas.
Coolmore haven’t risen to their current position by making emotional or sentimental decisions and it seems all-but sure to me that Churchill will be kept a mile for the time being. While the possibility of him being stepped up to a mile-and-a-quarter will be raised later in the season, given that the current crop of older milers headlined by the likes of Solow, Ribchester and Galileo Gold do not look a vintage bunch, it could well be the case that taking on the older horses over a mile rather than stepping up in trip could be the challenge that Coolmore choose to set Churchill in the second half of the season.”