Thursday 6.00pm The Derby and The Oaks in the next two days and I’m not sure either look classic Classics. Personally never been Epsom’s biggest fan, the best horse doesn’t always win. Won’t stop us trying to crack the downland conundrum.
Fridays Lucky 15
Has to be at Epsom.
Epsom 2.35 SPRING OFFENSIVE 10/1WH 9/1 general
Epsom 3.45 BROROCCO 9/2 general
Epsom 4.30 ENABLE 7/1 PP 6/1 general
Epsom 5.50 ZAMJAR 10/1 general
and here’s why
Epsom 2.35 SPRING OFFENSIVE This is a tight handicap and you won’t find a horse that ticks all the boxes. However Spring Offensive has plenty going for him. He ran in this race last year and got no sort of run under George Chaloner, running on late to grab sixth. I like his draw in stall 5, I am fascinated by the booking of Andrea Atzeni (Tony Hamilton was jocked up earlier and still rides at Epsom?), the horse ran well last time out when third in a competitive Thirsk Hunt Cup, is close to a winning mark and neither grade nor ground should be a problem. He does have a history of hanging right which may keep him straight up the camber! Paul Hanagan rides Home Cummins, also for #FantasticMrFahey, but I have her down as a York filly.
#FantasticMrFahey on sportinglife.com “Spring Offensive ran well from a bad draw in last year’s Investec Mile so we know he handles the course. He goes again this year and with a bit of luck he could go close. He ran well in the Thirsk Hunt Cup last time.”
Epsom 3.45 BROROCCO Lets keep this simple. Brorocco came from last to first to win the City and Suburban over C&D beating a few who re-oppose here. Andrew Balding’s charge is in form having run second at Chester last time out and I don’t think his five pound rise will be enough to stop him here. The favourite Fidaawy will no doubt try to go from the front but he has always looked a flat track horse to me who has come up short in C2 company twice before.
Epsom 4.30 ENABLE Lost as many races as she’s won, stepping up four furlongs, clumsy/unlucky last time? Just can’t have Rhododendhron at odds on. Enable is a talented well balanced filly who showed a nice turn of foot to win the Cheshire Oaks over 10F and John Gosden has always said his 3yo fillies were ahead of his colts and if Enable is the best of them she must have every chance. As a daughter of Nathaniel one would hope she stays the 12F trip and Frankie Dettori certainly knows where the winning post is at Epsom.
Thoughts of Enable’s connections, Gosden “I know the favourite is a fabulous filly. She is a legitimate favourite and was unlucky in the Guineas. Enable is in good form and breezed on Monday morning. We were very happy with her run at Chester and she handled the track very well.” Dettori said: “She surprised me at Chester. I rode her in the spring and she was nice, but I watched the video of the Newbury race and she looked a nice stayer, but a bit one-paced. What she showed me at Chester was very good – she whizzed round that turn like a greyhound. For a staying filly she showed a good turn of foot. I’m very excited about her and I think she’s going to run a decent race. The favourite comes with all the best credentials, but I think Enable will do well.”
Three thoughts. Firstly Rhododendrohn could hack up. Secondly, Sobetsu beating Coronet in 10F G1 at Deauville may be the best bit of form on show. Thirdly Ralph Beckett has few peers in training Group winning fillies and Isabel de Urbina, always been highly thought of and will love the 12F, could be the one at a big price.
Newcastle 7.50 ZAMJAR Busy as a 2yo including a 6F win here at Epsom and his last two runs as a 3yo on Turf have been excellent. He outran his odds in the hot 3yo handicap at Newbury won by Bacchus with the likes of Chessman, Graphite Storm and Winning Ways around him then went to Chester and needed every yard of the 6F there to win holding off an unlucky Munro. He’s drawn in stall 1 and Josephine Gordon will need to be busy early on but he’s only two pounds higher than Chester, this return to 7F and his C2 experience swings it for me.
After his win at Chester trainer Ed Dunlop put on his website “The drop back to six furlongs did not inconvenience Zamjar and a strongly run six furlongs is arguably what he needs but he is versatile and remains unexposed over seven furlongs. The handicapper cannot put him up too far given he has only won by two necks and the second looked a little unlucky. We will let him recover from this win and see if he can sneak into a valuable handicap in the coming weeks.”
Wednesdays Lucky 15
One from two so far and let’s hope we can top it up tonight!? Well we can and what a splendid price. Our £1 Lucky 15 (stake £15) returns just over £75 at SP which is just about Best Prices, Nice to be back among the winners.
Beverley 3.30 ARCANE DANCER 4th 5/2F (4/1 general)
Paul Hanagan had him just where he wanted, although perhaps a little keen early on, just didn’t pick up well enough in the last two furlongs.
Nottingham 3.50 ANOTHER TOUCH 1st 9/4 F (11/4 general)
Hooray I’ve read a race correctly and I have to say an excellent ride from Tony Hamilton, got the horse out, got the box seat with little effort then at the 2F pole just when he could have been caught in a pocket bullied his way out and the horse did the rest. This win will probably get him 5lbs to go up to OR103 and I wouldn’t be surprised if he has a spin in the Hunt Cup at Ascot because he can! However the race I really want to back him in is the John Smiths Cup over 10F at York on 15th July.
Kempton 7.50 KEYSER SOZE 1st 16/1 (10/1 general)
One of my favourite Notebook comments is “Whoosh”. Well this one went Whoosh with a capital Wh! Just one behind at the 2F pole he really quickened as horses can at Kempton. Overtook ten horses in one hundred yards. Handicappers reaction and connections plans will be of major interest.
Kempton 8.20 DARK DEVIL 6th 7/1 (6/1 Coral 11/2 general)
Would have been nice but midfield mediocrity from a horse who looks as though he needed the run. Call me a cynic but may he get dropped a pound from OR86?
Thursdays Lucky 15
Off to a slow start today.
Wolverhampton 3.50 PAVILLON 3rd 9/4F (4/1 PP 7/2 general)
Travelled well in midfield, wide into straight, couldn’t quicken sufficiently, stayed on.
Hamilton 4.30 BILLY BOND 5th 4/1 (9/2 general)
Slowly away, never competitive, one pace at best and in future one to avoid I’m afraid!
Chelmsford 7.10 CITY OF JOY 5/2 general
Newcastle 7.50 INSTANT ATTRACTION 7/1 general
The Epsom Derby 2017
Going – Good (GoingStick: 7.3 (Home Straight Far side 7.0 Stand side 7.4 on Thursday at 07:00)
Weather – Week now looking dry with low to mid 20s temperatures. Possible rain late Friday.