British 2yo Racing - 2008 Season
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Racing Previews Results

Racing Preview - May 20th 
Races :-
  • 99: Leicester 6:20, 5f Maiden (4)
  • 100: Musselburgh 2:10, 5f Maiden (5)

  • Race Virtual Paddocks FTO P&L Qualifiers
    • Leicester :-
    • Cherry Belle (PD Evans, Long Shot). Home bred filly taking on a tough looking group of colts. Not obvious FTO material for the trainer.
    • Titus Andronicus (KA Ryan, 5f). 2 from 14 with 5f debuts so far. Gets bulk of 5f FTO wins by end of May because the majority of debuts after that will be at 6f or longer. However, does get the odd debut winner at 5f later in season. This one has a good profile but the stable jockey Neil Callan is at Musselburgh. Jamie Spencer rides which might indicate a better type anyway. Has got into a tough looking group on debut.
    • Musselburgh :-
    • Eldorado Days (KR Burke, 5-6f). Trainer is getting into the late May and early June period when we should expect him to start of a number of better 2yos who compete strongly on debut. The stable has shown it's typical pattern this year with a slow April building towards the successes starting from mid to later May. Stable had a good winner STO at the York meeting last week as the first juvenile runner of the season.
    • This one has a solid profile as a sprint 2yo but would have needed to develop well from the sales to be a better type. Just a middling report in Sales Review.

      May 20th Summary : 
    • An interesting Class 4 maiden at Leicester and the 2007 race provides a text-book example of how the results of these maiden races can be misleading unless 'read' with some extra knowledge which wont be on the page. Reading the Result as weights carried and lengths beaten and applying that as a fair reflection of the relative merits would have had you falling into a number of traps during the year. 
    • The winner was Bill Turner's filly Only In Jest who had been running since early season. His 2yos were not in good condition in early season and he had his first winner of 2007 two days previously on May 20th. Only In Jest looked in burstingly good condition on the day and it wouldn't have been possible to have her in better form. She added racecraft and the trainer added a 5lb apprentice to tip things further her way and she won well. But, as that peak condition in May quickly passed she hardly beat a horse in later runs and is currently running moderately of the OR60s level her physical type always said she was right from Sales Review day. The 'Day in May' was her finest point of her career and she beat later Listed & Group 2 winners - but without rating above OR70.
    • Just like this season Peter Chapple-Hyam was into a spell of introducing a batch of better type in mid to late May including for the art dealing Greens. Western Art was his fourth runner of the season and the previous three had all won on debut. Two had won 3-4 days prior and looked good types in doing it. Given all that and the rumours of how good this one was the SP of 11/8f wasn't that short. In Paddock Review he was pretty small although deep bodied and compact. He didn't look especially ready or knowing. He ran well but without looking like a better type and couldn't deal with Only In Jest at her peak and receiving 10lbs. He won a suspect Listed race next time with a typical bit of hanging around at the back and picking up the pieces as the leaders fold on Sandown's stiff 5f course. He was entered for the Group 2 6f Richmond Stakes but didn't run and it will be interesting to see how good he really is at 3yo.
    • In third was a 3TO runner for Rod Millman who developed with racing. He won his next two runs and along with Western Art & Hatta Fort's efforts would have you a little baffled as to how they all got beaten by Only In Jest. Fourth was the small and neat sprinter Mazzanti for trainer Kevin Ryan. Absolutely typical of the neat type he has so many of. He ran well enough but looked ordinary in Paddock Review and his lack of size an issue. He won his maiden in the North third time before struggling in better races. He was sold off at the end of the year and is currently in Serbia and probably looking quite good there.
    • The fifth home was the best type in Review with Mick Channon's Hatta Fort on debut (another example of the better Mid-May debut for the Maktoum's that we are seeing presently in 2008 in places). The review that came back on the day that he was too wound up and mentally unfocussed to run to his best and would have to win on raw ability if he did. Since he won his Group race over 7f he wasn't in precisely the right spot over 5f on debut although Channon, like Hannon, will run horses at that distance that most trainer's would not. He ran as you would expect and looked eyecatching staying on late but putting up a below OR70s performance.
    • Just behind you had Luca Cumani's Dome Rock and the Paddock Review was negative about him saying he had gone backwards a lot since the yearling sales and was too light and underpowered now. He struggled in maidens and nurseries and couldn't win a claimer on his 6th try. But he wasn't far behind the later good ones and looked promising enough if you just read the form book. A long way behind him was the garbage and in the gap a 100/1 shot on debut called Gambling Jack that didn't run again at 2yo.
    • So, in retrospect we can see that the mix of readiness, professionalism and experience allowed the winner and third to get amongst the better types who were well below their final ratings FTO. Take those better horses off the form book page and just read Dome Rock & the rest as having been beaten comfortably by Only In Jest & Brassini and you had a good indication of their real ability. Mazzanti had made just an ok debut and turned out just to be an ordinary Northern maiden winner. With the Paddock view on the day and some knowledge of how trainers go about things the majority of that story could be 'seen' at the time. If you just looked at the form book two weeks later there would be plenty of opportunity to go wrong.
    • This year's race brings a smaller field but a number of the same elements as the 2007 edition. The best place to start is with Brian Meehan's Light The Fire who made his debut in an Ascot conditions race on soft ground. He didn't look out of place in Paddock Review (at 95,000gns he shouldn't have done) and a strong little sprinter. Given the moderate nature of most of the trainer's debuts he ran well enough keeping up with the experienced horses and even making a bit of ground after halfway before getting tired. The trainer hadn't had a 2yo winner when this preview was written (Zezao runs at Bath the day before) and it was in Mid-May in 2007 that he had his first couple of winners with S-3TO horses. Dettori has bothered to get booked for the ride (perhaps he turn up as well..) so this ought to be the little above average sprinter type and set a good standard.
    • Peter Chapple-Hyam is in the same pattern with debuts this year as last. He ran Great art for the Green family last Friday who finished a good second in a division of the Newbury 6f maiden. He didn't look that fit and not in particularly forward condition (many of his runners have looked behind schedule in condition in 2008). He runs the expensive Sayif for Authorised's owner on Monday in the Windsor Conditions race. Here he starts out Eagles Call part owned by the Greens and the Sangsters (another important owning family in his life seeing as they gave him his chance to train at Manton back in the early 90s and win 2,000 Guineas for them with Rodrigo De Triano, and all that...). So, this ought to be a good one and he cost a lot of money given that the female side of the pedigree is just ordinary. Using 2007 as a template along with what we have seen so far he ought to run well but be vulnerable to a readier and fitter opponent.
    • Michael Jarvis' first debut runner of the year was a poor one but we shouldn't give up on him producing a couple of debut winners in the next 2 weeks or so. These debut wins are often at Midlands and Northern courses and this coincides with slightly easier races to win normally. His runner here is the owner bred Silent Hero who has a strong pedigree overall with some high class siblings mixed in with the lightweights. One for Paddock Review but if he is a better type it would be no surprise to see him competing for the win.
    • And what type is Kevin Ryan's Titus Andronicus who has a Jockey Spencer on board (it's a green 2yo Jamie, not a 4yo with all-the-gears, please try and ride it a bit closer to the pace, for crying out loud). Interesting to see whether he's another 'Mazzanti' neat and small clone or perhaps a bulkier, raw boned, type that sire Danetime can get. The trainer can get 5f debut winners with better types at this time of year so another stronger looking debut runner.
    • Cherry Belle is dealt with below and Richard Hannon runs two sons of his old mate Redback. Rich Red is still the second string and is presumably being prepared to try to win a Nursery of OR70ish after a break into mid-season. He looked usable at that level on debut but at Folkestone STO his attitude had gone off and he looked too immature to get involved and ran like that. One to watch for signs of growing up after mid season. The first string is the FTO runner Lucky Redback who looked usable at a similar level (somehwere around OR70) at the sales and wouldn't be up to winning this race on debut.
    • In summary, a fascinating little field with the likely favourite coming off a 'just OK' run on soft ground. If Light The Fire snaps into shape STO (worth checking how Zezao went at Bath) he could win comfortably but there is some element of 'If' there. If he doesn't there are 2.5 others who could be stronger debuts and possible winners.
    ~ LEIC 6:20 ~ Today's Race Best Run FTO Run
    Name [PRF] WCor Run Class Level Best [Est] Best Run FTO [EST] Ave % FTO
    2 LIGHT THE FIRE [43] - 2 31 1 31 28
    1 EAGLES CALL [39] - 1 51
    5 SILENT HERO [38] - 1 32
    6 TITUS ANDRONICUS [36] - 1 32
    3 LUCKY REDBACK [28] - 1 29
    7 CHERRY BELLE [23] +5 1 21
    4 RICH RED [20] - 3 -13 1 -13 29

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    ~ EDIN 2:10 ~ Today's Race Best Run FTO Run
    Name [PRF] WCor Run Class Level Best [Est] Best Run FTO [EST] Ave % FTO
    4 MULLGLEN [38] - 3 33 2 3 22
    3 ELDORADO DAYS [34] - 1 24
    5 TAAZUR [34] - 1 32
    1 AMORACHY [30] - 3 23 2 -5 32
    2 EL BOBBY [20] - 3 16 2 -28 26

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