Two races today but only a seller at Catterick on Wednesday and a claimer
at Beverley on Thursday until the weekend. The Pontefract fillies' maiden
produced a 50/1 shock in 2007 with newcomer Loch Jipp winning for an unfashionable
stable. With Barry Hills' Just A Dancer a non runner the 12 girls behind
her managed a solitary success, in a claimer, through the whole of the
rest of the season. Loch Jipp won the Hilary Needler and competed respectably
in Group races and that 50/1 tag highlights how the "market will guide"
stuff is pretty empty of useful information on many occasions.
Eight runners this year with seven newcomers and a profile which doesn't
suggest it is any stronger than 2007 if we leave the unlikely conclusion
of there being another Loch Jipp hidden away. The best of the newcomers
on profile would be Anne Duffield's Camelot Communion who runs for
the Middleham Park partnerships as does Pat Haslam's Asian Tale
(worth a check which runs in the first colours for interest). The Duffield
filly was a relatively expensive purchase and has a solid enough pedigree
for an early 2yo.
The trainer started 2007 by running a few duff ones and then introduced
4 season's winners in the period April 18th to May 8th. None of those 4
won on debut although all ran well enough at long odds. The trainer doesn't
seem to get her runners as primed for debut as she did a few years ago
but this is a weak race and a better runner could win off a so-so preparation.
Aside from Camelot Communion you come back to the one runner with previous
experience as a solid contender. The trainer has a good third time out
record with his 2yos and you can see that sort of pattern developing with
Transcentral. For a cheap buy she is a usable size and build and
ought to make a 60s rater of some sort which would have been good enough
to win last year's edition of the race aside from Loch Jipp. But, she's
got a wilful temperament and doesn't concentrate on racing and what the
jockey wants her to do.
She showed promise on debut but the pilot was clearly more interested in
trying to get her to settle and found her very difficult to steer as she
was still pulling hard in the final furlong (a positive in a soft ground
race). STO at Leicester she was allowed her head a little more and led
for 3 furlongs plus while carrying the field from the stands' rail across
towards the far rail (hanging right). She got tired on the uphill finish
as you would expect but ran a solid race. This is her third run and if
she's now ready to calm down a bit and listen to the jockey and set a usable
pace we ought to see the best of her. If she pulls too hard she might still
hang on but on this uphill course she would set herself up for a bigger
finisher (perhaps Camelot Communion) in the straight.
Another interesting maiden at Windsor with David Evans' Miss
Chamanda returning to the course a week after a good debut behind what
is probably a useful winner. A summary of her is in the off-race day review
of April 20th. She's a good size and the trainer has had a solid 2yo season
to date. She might get beaten by an above average newcomer but there isn't
anything negative in her profile and she sets a good standard.
Klynch is interesting and is also covered in the 20th April week's
review. He made his debut only 3 days ago on holding ground at Newbury.
On looks he seemed a solid 75-85 sprinter and better than the seller winner
Rough Rocks that Meehan ran for the same owners in the Newbury race in
2007. He was too wound up (2 handlers, gave trouble loading) to show his
best and didn't appear to go on the ground at all and was left behind off
a moderate pace. The fact he's running so quickly could be for a good reason
- Meehan thinks he didn't get the chance to show what he's capable of a
Newbury and worth another go here. Or, it could be for a negative reason
in that he's another seller type like Rough Rocks and therefore expendable.
The trainer, like Mick Channon, can be ruthless with these sorts and get
rid of them. The fact that Robert Havlin is booked doesn't suggest the
senior jockeys were anxious to get on him (nothing against Havlin as a
rider, just fashionablity).
But, he is a better type physically than Rough Rocks and ought to be a
solid maiden winner. You can't be sure what you will get here because of
the muffed debut so the profile is low but if he runs to his potential
it wouldn't be a surprise to see him compete well.
It is worth a quick aside on Buckle Up who runs STO for Dean Ivory
because it makes a good point about how with Paddock Review you can be
affected by the quality of the overall field. On his debut at Kempton in
the Class 4 race behind Asaint Needs Brass he looked a perfectly solid
type in the context of that group aside from being less good than the winner.
He also looked forward in condition. He ran a shocker because of not handling
the track but the trainer's Dedante ran much better STO and you could have
mild thoughts about him doing the same. But, if you look at the VP for
the race, and it's a poor picture of him because it never got light at
Kempton, he's just too narrow and light compared to the other three. That's
before we have had a look at the better newcomers. So, a more competent
performance expected but not up to the standards of the better types today.
Paul Cole has made a good start to the 2008 turf season with all ages of
runners and this has shown up in pre-race with his horses much more forward
in coat condition, fitness & wellbeing than the average. He hasn't
had a debut winner but 3 of his 4 newcomers have placed and the other ran
a good race to get to 6th in the Brocklesby after entirely bungling the
first half of the race. Duke Of Aquitaine is an expensive US purchase
with a sprint pedigree. The trainer will mix in some less good types in
his early runners and ran the limited Abfabfong (cost a comparable 55,000gns)
on debut in this race last year. So, if he's any good he should compete
well and place and if he's a no-good then Paddock Review is the answer.
The 'Market' wont tell you because Abfabfong started 5/1 3rd favourite
last year while the best later winners (from good 2yo stables) were 12/1
Richard Hannon has finally run some typical debuts after wins with his
first three runners up to Bonnie Charlie beating Miss Chamanda here last
week. He again runs two with Hughes on Heliodor and Moore on Buddy
Marvellous (another son of Redback and the 'Rules' about Hannon buying
his yearlings applying). Until last year either jockey might end up on
the better 2yo but with Moore now committed to Stoute, and Hughes released
from his K. Abdulla retainer, you would think that Hughes would have the
pick. It worked that way last week with Hughes on the winner and Moore
on the bumbling son of Redback in 8th. Both have just okish pedigrees and
the market may be some help if Heliodor is being supported at 4/1 or less.
If one, presumably Heliodor, is an above average 2yo he might have too
much pace for the leggy filly late in the race but on balance more likely
to be a 2nd-4th first run outcome.
The other newcomer to mention would be John Best's Flash Man's Papers.
The trainer doesn't go in for debut wins and his debuts after the early
season runarounds can be pretty underdone. He had a debut winner last week
with what looked a useful prospect in Mullionmileanhour (not particularly
supported in the Market) and you would suspect that was untypical and probably
a plus mark for the quality of the horse. His runner here is the first
for the Australian sprinter Exceed And Excel who has a large European
crop to represent him this year so it will be useful to see what types
he gets. Again, on balance, more of a solid debut and one to assess rather
than expecting a win.