The Chepstow Auction race revolves around what Kingswinford actually
achieved on his last run in the Conditions race at Beverley over the weekend.
He seemed to step forward notably from the form shown on his previous three
runs. In Paddock Review he was smallish and relatively slightly built and
not one you would expect much improvement from. His rating on debut of
36 was too high in retrospect in a race which has yet to produce a later
winner. Now, David Evans gets his horses very fit and works them harder
than most and they will be well forward of average fitness by this time
of the year. This means that they can compete with better horses on preparation.
At Beverley he probably did not have to improve greatly as that wasn't
a strong conditions event.
Which means he sets a decent standard while not being overpowering and
vulnerable to a better type in context. But he has been plced in a low
level auction race where he is the joint topweight and he isn't likely
to run into a unusually strong opponent. Riflessione is a better
physical type with more scope but runs for a develop-with-racing trainer
who is very different to Evans. Earlier previews have noted the comparison
between the hard trained Evans whippets and the Stan Moore labradors. Riflessione
returns after a break from three early runs where he achieved a better
level of form than Kingswinford did in his early efforts. If you swapped
the trainers over then Riflessione would be a certainty here but he seems
unlikely to return from his month plus break in prime form.
In summary, Riflessione is the better lonfg term prospect but Kingswinford
seems likely to be at his peak here and the winner. Penny's Gift
ran on late through faders last time and in receipt of 6lbs from the topweight
colts should be the other placer.
The Redcar race doesn't look that strong and those with previous
runs set a moderate standard. Royal Muwasim has Channon debut win
attempt stamped on the box she came in. He has already had a debut winner
at the course for himself. This is a cheap purchase who has ended up owned
by Jaber Abdullah which is completely unsurprising because he acquires
lots of high class fillies cheaply via Channon. Mr Abdullah is a Maktoum
associate and supplies regular debut winners for the trainer. In short,
this thing should go close in this field. The Duffield newcomer Pacific
Bay is interesting each-way and Harriet's Girl probably has more improvement
to show than the others with form. But, on profile the Channon filly comes
out clearly on top.
The Leicester fillies' maiden looks an excellent group for the Class
4 status and on profile the type of field that could produce 4+ later maiden
& auction winners. Richard Hannon's Verlegen comes out top on
the basis of her experience with a third at Newmarket. That was a typical
effort that can get easily over-rated because it came at 'HQ' and in a
novice race. The time for the race was slow and the favourite failed which
means the level of form shown was an ordinary debut for a solid, if unexciting,
Hannon filly. She's unlikely to be value and on-course you would certainly
be searching through the others (a solid cast) for an alternative.
James Given has always been a thorough preparer of his 2yos and a classic
'Show up FTO or Nothing' type whereby if his runners didn't win or place
on debut you could be pretty certain they were no good. His first runner
in the last two years has been a debut winner over 5f and in the years
he doesn't have an early debut win a look back at season close will usually
show the early debuts were a poor set of athletes. His first debut was
4th of 6 in a tough Northern maiden and Bitza Baileys is his second
runner. She has other positives in that she's owned by connections important
to the stable and her siblings include three that won over 5f as juveniles.
Two of those three were fillies who won their debuts (coincidentally both
at Leicester) on April 3rd and June 1st. Remebering that the profile ratings
are a guide to the Paddock Reviewer at the course the first thing you would
want to know from them is what this one looked like as a physical type.
Barry Hills has shown his typical MO this year with a batch of early debuts
followed by a break to restart with newcomers in later May. Golden Rosie
is the first of this second batch and the early group have been disappointing
so far with just one STO win along with a range of places. The horses that
debut in this Mid-May to Mid-June period are usually winners of some calibre
in the season. and the better ones will win on debut. He had three
debut winners between May 17th and June 1st last year, for example, including
for his two of his best colts in Feared In Flight & Bob's Surprise.
So, be careful to note his debut runners int he nest 2-3 weeks. On profile
his filly here looks a later winner but not quite up to winning FTO.
That would be a solid front three in any middling maiden but there are
5-6 others with positives and interest of some sort. In brief, Our Wee
Girl looked fitter and readier than most Sylvester Kirk debut runners
when 2nd last week. That looked a thin Sandown race and the winner was
unfancied by connections. She looks one to oppose in this group. Mick Channon
runs and expensive filly with Please Sing but not for an obvious
croney and a 3rd-5th finish seems likely. Willie Jarvis can get debut winners
and the earliest debut runners tend to be the competitive 2yos. Dance
Club didn't cost a great deal considering she's a half sister to a
Group 1 winner so has residual stud value even if she only has two gears.
The trainer's first runner of the year was an ok 4th, in a toughish race,
FTO prior to a good win STO. Another interesting competitor and is that
Reviewer on the phone yet..
And, there's more. Ed Dunlop has said he has his 2yos more forward this
year and runs a solid enough filly on profile in Prowl although
she seems to have found a much tougher race than Crystal Moments did when
beating Our Wee Girl at Sandown last week. Mark Wallace is like Barry Hills
in selecting an early group of 2yos to make debuts and then taking a break
before the second batch appear in later May. Tintagel is a reasonably
expensive buy for another of Sheikh Mohammed's sons (Rashid this time and
not the one who has half of Mark Johnston's stable to run for him). The
early debuts tend to compete well and include the odd FTO win. This second
group tend to be more development debuts and she seems more likely to be
one for a STO peak.
All that and we should still mention Cecily who runs for Mark Prescott.
She is a half sister to two juvenile Group 3 winners who both won on debut,
one for Prescott. The trainer has just started running his 2yos and the
earliest runners in each batch tend to be the competitive ones and the
batches get progressively emptier of 2yo possibilities through the season.
The later ones are stuffed with the 3yo 10f+ handicapper set-ups. His first
two runners last Friday both finished 6th at 11/2 and didn't give the impression
he is particulalry forward with the juveniles. In that context Cecily is
a real test because if she is any good she should show up well here and
probably place. But, this doesn't look a typical maiden on profile with
a lot more depth than you would expect.
In summary, maidens which look strong on profile can often disappoint
and the field prove below expectations. There seems so much potential in
the group here to make real disappointment seem unlikely. A race to take
a real interest in because it should have future consequence even if it
isn't crackable on the day. Verlegen seems likely to be little value and
Our Wee Girl one to oppose. A long list of possible debut winners of which
Bitza Baileys is the most interesting and Given's FTO winners are often
at longer SPs.