Tag: Battaash

Review Qatar Goodwood Festival of Racing 2017

Posted Monday 7th August 6.15pm

“…. one of the most challenging race meetings, one which started in bright sunshine on Tuesday, but deteriorated into a mud bath with 50mm of rain on Wednesday, and ground that was soft or near soft for the rest of the week.” The words of an under fire Clerk of the Course.

The first race of the meeting, a 10F handicap set the tone with the order of the first two reversed in the Stewards room. Goodwood is such a difficult place to punt at. Tuesdays form may well hold up but I’m really wary of the following four days after all that rain and then a fresh strip of ground five metres from the far rail available from Thursday onwards.

What I don’t understand concerning the rain is the CoC didn’t seem to expect that much! Tuesday he said 6-10mm and we should get a couple of races run before it starts. Well it started at 10am and they got five times more than expected!

I will come back to Thursday’s fresh strip of ground more than once as it would seem the Weighing Room had decided it was the ONLY place to race, although some trainers were still choosing high in the draw for the Stewards Cup. Baffling. Mind you was the Stands side definitely slower? We won’t ever know as no horse raced there from Thursday onwards, whereas on Wednesday in the monsoon every horse raced Stands Side! Let’s get more positive!

Stars in my eyes

The two 2yo colts Expert Eye and Barraquerro, who met on debut at Newbury finishing first and third, winning the 7F Vintage and the 6F Richmond respectively. Expert Eye’s trainer Sir Michael Stoute very much gives me the impression that the horse is very much a “now 2yo” whereas Brian Meehan sees Barraquerro as a longer term project, even beyond the 2000 Guineas.

Stoute ‘s reputation is more based around his slow burning middle distance horses, often home bred, and that pipeline was highlighted by an excellent win from the 4yo, Poets Word, and likewise the 3yo Crystal Ocean who is clearly progressive. His victory was in the Group 3 Glorious Stakes which in the past has been won by Stoute horses en route to Group 1. Indeed I would expect both winners to have a go at the top level within the next twelve months.

Winter is a splendid 3yo filly seeing the extra two furlongs out well but this was a soft Group 1.

Battaash is beginning to look the real deal as a sprinter. 5F GF at Sandown to 5F Soft at Goodwood, that is some range. Exciting times ahead for Charlie Hill’s 3yo son of Dark Angel.


If they ran the Goodwood Cup and the Sussex Stakes on decent Good ground or better tomorrow I would still expect Big Orange and Ribchester to win. In the stayers event the Orange dwarved Stradivarius but he could be a useful addition to the division with his next target being the St.Leger and supposedly next season will be a Cup horse.

As for Ribchester, a peculiar effort. Firstly Toscanini looks a total waste of time as a pacemaker. Secondly Ribchester did too much too early, lugged out, then ran on!? The 10F Irish Champions Stakes is being mooted as a possible target. One supposes they are working backwards from the 9F Dubai Turf next March!

sportinglife.com “Richard Fahey is not ruling out a crack at Sunday’s Group 1 Prix Jacques le Marois with stable star Ribchester, who despite suffering a shock defeat in treacherous conditions in Wednesday’s Sussex Stakes at Goodwood. “He’s bouncing and has come out of the race well,” said Fahey on Sunday. “I haven’t drawn a line through France yet and I’ll see how he is this week. I’ll make a decision before Thursday.”

Horrible Handicaps

The BetFred Mile was won by Ryan Moore on Master the World for David Elsworth. I say ‘won’ I mean ‘given to’. Going into this race the 6yo was three from thirty eight, often caught in traffic as he made his run. Not here. From the two furlong pole he had a clear run down the inside no less, on that strip of fresh ground. Can’t believe Martin Dwyer hadn’t got leader and Royal Hunt Cup winner, Feng Zhui, glued to the far rail. More on this race in the Looking Forward section.

The 6F Stewards Cup was won by the one horse put down as likely to lead in Saturday mornings Racing Post excellent pace map, Lancelot du Lac. So was this a three furlong dash to THAT five yard strip? After two furlongs those drawn 20+ were six lengths wrong, ignore their form. More on this race in the Looking Forward section.

Did that really just happen?

Breton Rock won the 7F Lennox round the outside coming from last a furlong out, finishing two to everything else’s one. Billesdon Brook did something similar in the nursery but involved some weaving amongst horses as well. My good thing Rebel Streak beaten a short head by a 100/1 shot!


Looking Forward

UAE PRINCE- Watch replay! Winner without a penalty! Came to win race before the dodgems in front.
SHANGHAI GLORY- Run well to get fifth considering he was almost over the rail two out as they all came across.

EDDYSTONE ROCK- Denied a clear run in the Wolferton, denied a clear run here, not a lot of room in last fifty yards when sixth in John Smiths. Get Fox off, put a proper jockey on, off OR99 and a decent C2 10F could be his!

SOUL SILVER – Barged as she came to make her challenge. Kept on hands and heels. C2 8F fillies handicap. No higher.

SAINTED – Never got the run when she wanted to. 7F Soft Listed tops.

GM HOPKINS-Slow from stalls AGAIN! Flat course, few bends, 8F. Still on my Cambridgeshire list.

SHYMKENT- 3yo never got a run. Hampered, ran on. OR90 12F O’Meara. May need to get his toe in. York Ebor Festival?


Lucky 15 Saturday June 17th

Friday 5.15pm Just can’t beat racing on the Knavesmire in the summer. Must get up there in July. Royal Ascot is steaming towards us and for once I’m quite hopeful as home work has gone well and feel up to speed on many form lines. As always I’m quite prepared to be totally wrong but I think the key to a profitable Royal Ascot 2017 can be summed up in three words. John Gosdens Fillies. So I’ve backed big Johnny G (Thanks M.Chapman) at 6/1 to be top trainer. Sorry Aidan who? Daban wins the Jersey, Coronet wins the Ribblesdale (G1 horse in a G2), Dabayah gives Winter a fright, with no Icespire it’s Gymnaste for the Sandringham (and if she does you’d better check out Keyser Soze in the Britannia!) and of course after the Duke of Cambridge we should all be able to Laugh Aloud!

More articles on the way.

Saturdays Lucky 15

Prayer mats at the ready!

Sandown 2.40                        BATTAASH                                        9/1 Ladbrokes + WH 8/1 general

York 3.30                    DANIELSFLYER                                    12/1 PP 10/1 WH 8/1 general

Sandown 3.50                        TAUREAN STAR                      8/1 general

Sandown 5.35                        VUELA                                    7/4 general

and here’s why

Sandown 2.40                        BATTAASH                        Not my type of race normally, a 3yo Listed event over Sandown’s awkward 5F, but let’s do something different! This will be the selections first run of the season and the form book says he was third to the rapid Mrs Danvers in the G3 Cornwallis Stakes at HQ the last time we saw the gelding last October. That reads well in this Listed event. However it is the fact that ten days ago Charlie Hills said in his Weekender column that Battaash “had done a scintillating bit of work”. Now if one trainer knows his sprinters it is young Charles, Supposedly has the worst draw but I’m not convinced the rail is where you want to be unless you’re leading! It’s 4/1 the field and at double that Battaash may offer some value.

York 3.30                    DANIELSFLYER                        Comfortable winner of a strong C2 3yo sprint at Newmarket on his only run this season he looked just the type for this valuable race. Solid 2yo form, second in the Listed Woodcote Stakes at Epsom, he’s an improver (forget his run over C&D he was drawn 18!), ground, trip and grade are fine, the booking of SDS for Brian Ellison is a definite plus and I’m more than happy with stall 8. Dangers all around but the winner will be in a single figure draw.

Sandown 3.50                        TAUREAN STAR             This is the horse I was all over for the Victoria Cup over Ascots straight 7F when this hold up horse had no luck as to my amazement and I’m sure jockey Jamie Spencer’s, the whole field, all 23 of them, crossed to the Stands rail! No chance from 3F out but he kept on. Normally runs in a straight line but came round Lingfields bends OK and Spencer will need to box clever from stall 5. Drop him in, not drop him out, then find a seam to come home strongly in the final furlong. The grade and the ground are fine as should be the trip unless he gets lit up. This doesn’t look a strong C2 to me.

Sandown 5.35                        VUELA                                 If you only saw the form lines you would have known it was trained by Luca Cumani! He is so patient with these home bred staying types. This daughter of Duke of Marmalade out of a Wildenstein mare was always going to need a trip and I expect further improvement as she steps up to 14F in the hands of the always patient Jamie Spencer. This could well be her last handicap as she will probably go in search of Black type next and I wouldn’t be surprised if something like the Park hill Stakes at York in September is on the radar. The trainer won it in 2014 with Silk Sari.


Fridays Lucky 15

Fingers crossed!

York 2.20                    BURGUILLOS                                                    2nd 4/1                 (11/2 PP 9/2 general)

Beaten a neck. Not the smoothest passage through but beaten on merit.

York 3.30                    GOD WILLING                                     13th 14/1         (20/1 general)

Nibbled at. Close up, weakened final furlong.

York 4.40                    MONJENI                                            3rd 10/3JF        (11/2 general)

Goodwood 7.40         WAR AT SEA                                      8/1 PP 7/1 general


Royal Ascot 2017

Charlie Appleby picks out 5-star Royal Ascot team Friday 16 June 2017 At The Races

Blessed this year with a with a team of smart two-year-olds and talented older horses, Appleby exclusively reveals five Royal Ascot horses to follow to Press Association Sport:

AQABAH (Coventry Stakes) “He won his maiden at Ascot then went to the Curragh and finished fourth on soft ground there. On his American pedigree that didn’t suit him, but he gained good experience there. He will be suited to a quicker surface and his work has been good since that race. He will now head towards the Coventry.”

FRONTIERSMAN (Hardwicke Stakes) ” He put up a great performance in the Coronation Cup. He has come out of that race very well. All the signs have been good since Epsom with him and the plan is to head to the Hardwicke. His run at Epsom didn’t surprise me as his home-work had been so good. It was a big jump, stepping up from handicap company to Group One company, but his home-work had been good and we went there confident of a good run. That’s why we supplemented him for that race.”

GRECIAN LIGHT (Sandringham Handicap) “She danced every dance last year at the top table and she was always very competitive. I was pleased with her first start of the season in France. She finished third on soft ground which would probably not have been ideal. I purposely put her away for the Sandringham. Her work has been nice and I feel that she is off a competitive mark.”

SECRET ADVISOR (King George V Stakes) “The King George V Handicap is a race I like and we tend to have three or four runners in there. The one for this year could be Secret Advisor. He is stepping up in trip and I think that will suit him. I don’t think he has met his optimum trip yet. He was a winner over a mile in his maiden. He then stepped up to a mile and a quarter at Windsor, where he met a nice horse on the day. We then dropped him back at Goodwood and again he ran a creditable race, but crying out that stepping up was only going to suit him. I feel he is a horse that going up to a mile and a half, he will find more improvement.”

SOUND AND SILENCE (Norfolk Stakes or Windsor Castle Stakes) “He is a horse that broke his maiden on his debut at Newmarket then he finished fourth in the National Stakes at Sandown. He has come out of the race well. He did scope a bit dirty after the race, but that has cleared up well and his work has been good. I feel that he will potentially head towards the Norfolk Stakes at this stage.”


June 16 2017, 10:22 Mirage Dancer is set to contest the Hampton Court Stakes at Royal Ascot next week. The son of Frankel made a successful start to his career in a Doncaster maiden last October and was far from disgraced on his seasonal reappearance when fourth behind subsequent Derby runner-up Cliffs Of Moher in the Dee Stakes at Chester.

Teddy Grimthorpe, racing manager to owner Khalid Abdullah, said: “I would say he’s more likely to go for the Hampton Court than the King Edward. We’ve always said he’s very much a work in progress. He caught the eye at Chester and that was only his second lifetime start and his first of the year. We hope he’ll improve from that. He’s coming on all the time.”