A slightly different start to this Preview partly for a very good reason
and also for a less obvious one. Firstly the non obvious one. Yesterday's
Preview spent a lot of time on a Nottingham race which had 6 non-runners
(firm ground issues), including the most interesting newcomers, and made
it an entirely different event. It also covered the problems Stargaze might
have on the downhill turn on Lingfield's AW track. All very well, but it
was on the straight turf course (apologies for the error) and he was drawn
next to the rail on the 'Magic Carpet' which can make handicappers look
like Group performers when in full force. Add in some clueless newcomers
and a mismatch. Oh, and two races won by horses who were not mentioned
at all. So, part of the reason is to write something worthwhile in the
Preview which might last for at least 24 hours. [If the Previews ever descend
to stuff like ".. Archers Road is a bonny colt who should go well [for
no solidly argued reason]....." then hopefully they will disappear before
someone asks B2yoR to stop.]
The second reason is that the day sees the first races at longer than 5f.
Remember that 5f is seen as a lesser discipline and a specialist one many
in the racing world. The bigger stables will consider the 6f races as the
minimum to be aiming at with their better types and 7f the prize distance
at 2yo. If you think about it the trainers we have seen with runners so
far are the usual ones with Hannon, Channon & Barry Hills the larger
stables who do run a few better ones early over 5f. Which means that when
the 6f races start there may well be a number of larger stables with a
batch of solid horses to start off. With a dry and warmish Spring this
year you suspect a number of stables will be solidly forward. The 6f
Maiden at Haydock has been divided with 26 juveniles declared in total
to add some support to that theory.
Now, between the start of the 6f races and the end of May there are a small
set of major maidens that tend to attract better fields. The Haydock race
only started out last year but the first three home included two that placed
at Royal Ascot and the other won twice up to Novice level. The York Dante
Meeting next week has a 6f maiden which is the next checkpoint in this
period. At the end of next week the Newbury meeting has a 6f race which
regularly produces big fields and important horses and the Ripon meeting
on that weekend can produce a useful horse (often from Mark Johnston).
Through to the end of May there are then maidens at lesser courses each
day with a number of 6f maidens at Newmarket & Goodwood as possible
targets for better 2yos.
Let us pretend you are a Trainer with a large string and a variety of owners
including several Arab based and you have to deal with a range of Racing
Managers as well as strong minded owners. You have only run one over 5f
so far which was just a tryout and it ran a shocker on softer going so
you decided to stop this 5f nonsense and wait for the 6f races. You have
been at this for a long time so you know the landscape you will be crossing
through to the end of June and you tend to use the same approach. The training
has identified which are the forward ones who are ready to try a run and
also which have looked the quality ones which have done the basic training
without being pressed at all. You have not, in historical Bill Turner style,
run full out trial races between them to get to the bottom of the where
they fit on the Merit List. How are you going to place your horses? Here
are a few of the things you might consider :-
How are you going to keep the owners happy? Do they like to have runners
at major meetings or do they like winners anywhere. For major owners with
a lot of expensive ones what do they want to do with the best and, as importantly,
the lesser ones. Get the average and worse ones going early to get a win
and then sell them on at the 'Horses In Training' sales or hide them away.
If the major owner has horses with other trainers you will have to agree
with their Racing Manager where your horses fit.
With the ones you think might have Royal Ascot possibilities for mid-June
how do you want to play the debut? Most trainers do not like to take maidens
to Listed & Group races so want to win first. If you are a 'Nice Intro'
trainer that means you either need to leave time for two runs before Ascot
(with a minimum of 14 days between runs) or press a bit harder on debut
to get the win. If you take your good prospect to a major meeting for a
targeted 6f race it might run really well and finish third. Go to Leicester
or the like and you might pick up a maiden unpressed and can then concentrate
on the training. But, then again, it might not learn anything to help it
when the Coventry Stakes kicks off with a frantic pace.
Do you care much about Ascot at all? Unless you are perhaps looking to
produce a Stallion with a 6f 2yo Group win on the C.V. the distance hierarchy
might mean you will wait for the later 7f races or some of the soft 6f
Group races in later season (the Mill Reef can often be pretty empty).
Do you just use the start of the 6f races to get some ordinary maiden types
The table below summarises the approach to May to early June debuts for
a small set of major trainers who all have horses declared for Haydock.
||Early 6f Debuts in 2005-8
2008 = First debut May 16th Newbury - Orizaba won 11/4 (placed
Royal Ascot). 2 more on May 23rd with 3rd for two later maiden winners
at 7/1 & 20/1. 7 more in a batch May 27th to June 3rd - 3 placed FTO
& none worse than 6th in big fields. SP range in late batch 3/1 to
14/1 with limited relevance. Most were up to winning ordinary Maidens &
2007 = First debut May 17th York & Nawaaff 2nd at 7/2.
Only 2 more to end May with a seller win well beaten & solid Jaber
Abdullah owned runner 4th at Newmarket at 12/1 in big field
2006 = First debut May 19th 2nd at Hamilton where he targets debut
wins for Ahmed Al Maktoum. 2 long priced, unplaced, debuts at Newbury with
later seller & maiden winner. 3 more debuts in late May at Goodwood
& Newmarket with two 3rds. 2 x later maiden winners including older
Group winner Majestic Roi & 2yo Group Winner Alzerra.
2005 = First debut May 10th with 10/1 win by useful runner
at Yarmouth. Next debut a win for the useful Championship Point at 15/2
(placed at Royal Ascot) in a division of the Newbury maiden with moderate
Busy Shark unplaced at 9/1 in the other. Nursery winner 7/17 at Ripon at
11/2 next day. Batch of four debuts in late May with all up to average
maiden winner class. FTO SP variable indicators with shortest SPs including
bad & placed runs as did the long SPs.
Summary : - As ever the odd debut wins have been by high class ones
with two Royal Ascot runners targeted at Newbury's mid-May maiden. The
majority that start are up to winning an average maiden but may take time
to do it. They are usually short of full fitness and places come along
with weaker races so the SP is not fully correlated to the overall ability
nor the performance on the day. If he has some better 2yos they may debut
before Royal Ascot but miss the meeting. He seems to like them to have
won well by mid to later May to go the Royal meeting.
2008 = First debut May 10th at Haydock with Seaway 2nd at 5/1 (2nd
at Royal Ascot). 2nd debut May 16th at Newbury with Donativum 4th at 14/1
(Unplaced at Royal Ascot over 5f. Won Tattersalls Sales race from Group
1 winner & Grade 1 winner in US later). No debut over 6f until June
9th with later 4TO maiden winner 2nd at 4/1 at Windsor.
2007 = First debut May 19th at Newbury with Revivalism's sole 2yo
run unplaced at 11/1. Three more in May, all for Princess Haya, with Bastakiya
2nd at 9/1 at Lingfield (unplaced at Royal Ascot). Expensive later Nursery
winner Fortuity 8th at 9/2 at Goodwood & moderate Bourse 14/1 at Newmarket
2006 = Late start overall and only 2 runners before Raincoat's debut
win over 7f on June 14th for Princess Haya. Two late May debuts for moderate
to average maiden types both unplaced at 6/1 & 12/1.
2005 = 3 debuts between May 12-14th at York & Newbury. Group
2 winner Leo 4th at York at 4/1. Tattersalls Stakes race winner Murfreesboro
7th at 12/1 at Newbury. Coventry Stakes favourite To Sender winner at
Newbury at 5/1. Six more debuts in late May to June 6th with all unplaced
FTO most at 5/1 to 8/1 range. Mostly maiden winners at best except for
useful Racer Forever with two non-winners at 2yo.
Summary : - If the stable is well forward, as in 2005 & 2008
then the earliest runners will include some really high class horses. Only
To Sender has actually won FTO during the period remember though and a
duff debuts like that by Donativum leave the trainer unphased because he
knows the good ones have plenty of late season targets. He will not press
horses to get to Royal Ascot but if they have performed well in May then
they will go although he prefers them to have won or to have had two goes
The early runners can include ordinary ones who occasionally leak into
the smaller Newmarket meetings but tend to go to lesser tracks. The unpressed
debuts mean that the SPs are of limited use in identifying the good ones.
2008 = First debut May 10th with useful Tishtar 3rd at Haydock at
7/1. 5 more 6f debuts May 16-17th at Newbury & Newmarket. FTO win
at Newbury at 11/4 for Instalment (unplaced Royal Ascot) & other
four in 3rd to 5th range at 15/2 to 20/1. Another batch of 5 May 21st to
24th with debut win at Goodwood at 4/1 for Elusive Wave (sold to run in
France after). Mixed results for others mostly at shorter SPs with batch
including two moderate non winners and useful Weald Park.
2007 = First debut May 19th at Newbury with 9th & 17th
places at 12/1 & 33/1 by solid later winners. Batch of 6 at May 23rd
to 25th with usual mixed bag of abilities and SPs but two 3rd at best.
8f Group 1 winner unplaced FTO at 16/1.
2006 = First debut May 20th at Newbury with Major Cadeaux
winning at 7/1 (2nd at Royal Ascot) with moderate runner unplaced FTO
at 40/1. Next batch of 5 between May 22nd to 27th with usual mix of abilities
from non-winners to useful The Old Fella and the SPs uninformative about
the better ones & the only places at 16/1 & 40/1.
2005 = First debut May 12th with Sonny Santino 3rd at York at 11/1.
Two solid winners FTO at Newbury with 3rd at 9/2 & 5th at 25/1 on May
14th. Batch of 7 start-off May 20-28th & no FTO wins and one place
at 6/1 by a non-winner. Usual wide range of abilities with high class Asset
unplaced FTO at 6/4f.
Summary :- Newbury the usual start point & two prior debuts
in period by similar OR88ish types who placed 3rd FTO. Hints of targeting
Newbury with best they have ready and will win if high class but debuts
for The Queen seem especially tuned & do not see the normally full
improvement. Big batches of starters in later May do not seem to be particularly
targeted and the Market seems to lose track of what quality they are. Only
a very short SP (say 5/2 & less in solid field seems an indicator of
higher class). The late month large batch will include a really good one.
2008 = Odd season and no debuts until three moderate horses on May
31st at 8/1 to 40/1. No strong 6f debut before Royal Ascot & out of
character for the trainer.
2007 = First debut May 17th at York with win for Feared In Flight
(placed Royal Ascot) at 6/1. 2nd 6f debut on June 1st with Bob's Surprise
winning at 9/1 (unplaced Royal Ascot) at Goodwood & poor stablemate
unplaced at 66/1. Two more 6f debuts before Royal Ascot by ok maiden winners
unplaced at 9/1 & 5/2.
2006 = First debut May 18th at York with Silkie Smooth 3rd at 10/3
& non winner. Poor one ran at Newbury unplaced at 33/1. Stable probably
behind schedule with three moderate to average types debuting in early
June unplaced. Cumin placed 2nd at Haydock on June 9th and placed at Royal
Ascot and Thousand Words won at Newbury on June 15th (later Group winner
& the type he would try to get to Royal Ascot).
2005 = First debuts May 28th at Doncaster with pair of good
maiden winners 3rd at 40/1 and unplaced at 5/1 (won well STO). Three debuts
on 3rd on June with wins at 4/1 & 11/2 at Goodwood & Haydock
for Group winner Spinning Queen & high class Private Business who both
missed Royal Ascot.
Summary :- Debuts before late May are rare and his prime target
seems to be in early June when he will introduce some really high class
ones that can win FTO. He seems to choose his York runners with care as
he does for Doncaster.
2008 = First debut May 15th with later Group winner Shaweel 3rd
at York at 100/30. 6 later debuts by end May with all unplaced and all
but two (both non-winners) at 10/1 or more. Some very expensive or owner
bred for the Maktoum family but looked like getting the moderate to average
2007 = First debut May 15th with useful Abolition 2nd at Newcastle
at 5/2. Hawaas unplaced at York at 8/1. Mafioso 4th at Ripon on May 20th
at 9/2 and ok maiden winner. Later debuts mostly unplaced for moderate
to average ones except for Hamilton win in mid-June for horse that
ran at Royal Ascot.
2006 = First debut May 10th with Always Frutiful winning
at Ripon. Useful runner 5th of 17 at Newcastle at 12/1 on May 12th.
York maiden runner last at 10/1 sole run. Batch of moderate to average
debuts in late May and some placed ones in second week in June.
2005 = First debut May 12th with useful Desert Realm last
at York at 3/1 ran too freely. Debut win for In Full Cry at Ripon
at 11/2. Usual batch of Maktoum family owned moderate to average types
and then quality improve with mid June debuts.
Summary :- York runner for Maktoum family usually better class but
can blow out although the trainer has less 'lost' debuts these days. Targets
a good runner at Ripon in mid-May normally. Other early debuts can be ok
types but need the runs. Stable has an awful lot of Maktoum family owner-breds
and the end of May seems to be filled with a lot of these getting going
and they are OR70s at best and some moderate. Better debuts and types for
variable sources into June including Mr Shack & Mr Huggins.
With that background in place let us have a brief look at the Haydock
divisions. The initial point to make is that they have very different
shapes to their profiles. The first division has a couple of runners with
previous form who, with a modicum of improvement, will set a good standard
for the newcomers. Looking at the table above these trainers do not get
rafts of 6f winners in this period they get odd ones with their better
types normally. The first race has two solid barriers to a debut win unless
one of the newcomers is, say, OR90+ kit. The second division looks less
well defended and if you discounted the previous form horses you have a
pick between FTOs from the table above mostly and one of them would get
a debut win somewhat by default.
Kingdom Of Light comes out top on profile in Division 1 after a
debut at Pontefract where he can with a reputation as being good but look
backward in condition although 'big 'enough'. No surprise to see him stepped
up to 6f after lacking pace at times and then plugging on to get back to
2nd late on. A difficult race to weigh up but the 1st three are worth treating
as above average and they ran a different race to those who got well behind
& faded or made a bit of progress (like Rock Of Love who was beaten
yesterday). A solid favourite and a good a barrier to the newcomers.
Our Dream Queen was an 'eyecatcher' in a maiden at Newbury on wet &
sticky ground which did not suit many horses. She made a quiet debut sitting
in midfield before making ok progress to finish 3rd without looking likely
to challenge. Just a solid physical type but with an improvers pedigree
to help the belief she will improve and sets a good second level in the
profile. The way that Newbury race is 'working out' is a good example of
how the interplay of experience, race pace, ability & handling ground
can mix the horses up at the finish. The 1st, 4th (miles behind Kingdom
Of Light after getting upset in the stalls) & 6-8th have all been well
beaten since. The two smaller, but well built, ones who looked unfit or
too fizzy in Little Perisher & Stargaze have improved to place &
win since. The paddock guy had those two marked as ok so one of his better
Mal And Dave did not show enough FTO to believe he can compete here.
looked an ok size but backward and a stodgy mover FTO and predictably got
left behind as a solid group of 'now' fillies went at it over 5f. On how
she moved at Newmarket you would not be surprised to see a flat 6f a bit
quick for her as well.
In this division you then have Gosden and Johnston represented by newcomers
and time to check the summaries above. Isdaar must be a terrific
physical type to cost 240,000gns in last year's depressed yearling market
and given a humdrum (perhaps a kind description) dam's side. Since the
stable also has Running Mate in Div II we can perhaps suggest that
the stable is well forward this year. We should then expect that at least
one of this pair is very good and will place. Wins tend to come with the
really high class ones because of the relaxed preparation. On balance Isdaar
would not be up to beating a Kingdom Of Light but a strong place a good
return. With a lot of his horses starting in the 4/1 to 9/1 range the Market
has a limited handle on what to expect because the trainer is not a 'Noseda'
style this-things-ready handler. If you look at this - Table
- it shows his wins to runs with debut horses at different SP ranges in
recent years. To pick a few out that is 4/35 winners between 85-40 to 5/1
FTO but a better 7/29 for 11/2 to 10/1 range in 2007-8. That is not the
way the 'Market' is supposed to work, Frank.
Mark Johnston runs Step In Time who is by Giant's Causeway out of
a Grade 1 winning dam and the trainer loves to buy 'cheaper' yearling with
high class relations. A pedigree that should provide a solid winner and
the debut in the first batch rather than the 'Maktoum Surplus Stock' period
a plus. A promising debut likely to not up to winning and his York debut
runner next week should be the best early one.
A few other points in the Northern newcomers. Kevin Ryan could have been
included in the table above because he has a recognisable approach with
early 6f debuts. In summary the earliest debut runners will include 2-3
useful or better ones if he has them and strong debuts are common. Those
who go well FTO without winning usually win STO to order. He often selects
he good one for York which can go well whatever the SP. However, the cheap
filly Mary Celest looks more of an ordinary one kicking off than
a better one.
Ed McMahon & John Fretwell tried hard to win the 5f fillies' maiden
here recently with Aalsmeer and the trainer goes in for strong debuts for
the owner overall. Reeds Bay reads as a unlikely high class debut
by Monsieur Bond out of a moderate dam. This looks a strong race as well.
A word also for Tom Tate who has his first runner with Kylladie.
Mr Tate had his third profitable year in four with debuts in 2008 although
the timing in the year has varied. from June to September. The Market does
not really rate him so the longer priced winners. Along with many other
trainers the earliest runner(s) may not win but will competitive and able
to win at a lower level. One to watch for his STO at a lesser course.
In summary Kingdom Of Light a solid favourite and Our Dream Queen a good
back up. Two higher class debut types with Isdaar & Step In Time but
in the long run not good value for the odd wins this type of profile suggests
in a race with solid experience. Places to 4th would be fine promise and
Isdaar might be Royal Ascot class.
Division II has a different shape with Polly Macho the best of those
with form. He was always struggling to keep up with the leading three in
a race with a stiff pace at Leicester and stalled late on. Having watched
the Evans' horses running well at Chester this week he should improve and
set a reasonable standard for the newcomers and a fair chance of an each-way
place. Ginger Ted steps up to 6f with blinkers after getting left
behind in a slick ground 5f race and then a soft ground one but plugging
on. He has been seller entered but a non-runner and he should be able to
win one of those but this seems too high unless his power has tightened
up well. What to make of Whippers Love who was backed for the Brocklesby
but another Johnston 'Lost Debut' like the old days. No improvement STO
and blew up again. He must be better than that but one to avoid until he
puts a race together.
The odd newcomer is Howard Johnston's Urban Clubber who is owned
by Transcend Bloodstoock (his joint venture with Graham Wylie) so ought
to be a stronger debut. She is pretty cheap by their standards and by an
older mare who used to produce Group class runners. Difficult one to place
and a loner SP in double figures says she is here just to get started.
If you assume no surprises from the set above the race then boils down
to a bit of a pinstick, before the paddock review, between Running Mate
(Gosden), Tislaam (Channon), Sir Parky (Hannon) & Atacama
Crossing (BW Hills). Using the summaries above you would say
that that Atacama Crossing is least likely to be a winner. Sir Parky is
probably a solid OR80s type for the Hannon's but they will be saving their
best 6f 2yos for Newbury next week. Channon also has used Newbury for his
recent Royal Ascot types to start and so the FTO wins in the period. Tislaam
reads as an ok maiden winner for one of his preferred owners who should
make the first four. Running Mate reads as the likelier high class Gosden
debut on the night and Princess Haya his preferred owner in that sense
and Seaway was second in the race last year for her one debut (to a good
class STO Channon filly for Tislaam's owner).
In summary, Polly Macho might be a bother if he gets and easy lead and
the better newcomers are a bit short on nous & basic go. With four
solid ones to oppose you think something will get by. Urban Clubber an
interesting sideshow but pass over. It then becomes a pick between four
newcomers from non-FTO trainers for the most part but one 'has to win'.
The Market is going to be of limited use because the trainers will all
say they are 'a nice horse who should go well but they will come on
for the run..' Atacama Crossing seems least likely & the best of
Running Mate & Tislaam to prove too strong for Sir Parky. Slight preference
for the Gosden horse given one of his runners here ought to be very good.
The Ascot 5f Maiden has been going for the last two years and the
two editions have produced widely different fields. A large set of 11 in
2007 had eight winners during the season in it with the Windsor Castle
winner and the Coventry Stakes runner-up 6th & 2nd on their debuts.
Just useful types at best bedside including Monsieur Chevalier's full brother
(Mr Fips, 9th at Royal Ascot in the Windsor Castle). Last year the only
four ran with a withdrawal and although the whole field were winners over
the season they were just above average maiden winners. A couple were entered
in claimers in late season because they were struggling with their inflated
handicap marks. One was the debut winner Glamorous Spirit who had looked
a real wind-up job to win FTO with the Italian connections shouting the
place down. She proved short of better class and has ended up with Ron
Harris over the winter. He has done what he always does with cast-offs
and turned them into one-dimensional forcing front-runners. She has started
winning again at low level and broken the 5f track record at Kempton to
show that the zip Noseda saw early from her early last year is still there
in some form.
Another small field this year and another Noseda debut runner. Thinking
back the 5 trainers above they have managed 9 debut wins between them from
100+ horses spread over 5 years and a months worth of each season. Mr Noseda
had 5 with his first 7 runners last year in just over a month with Glamorous
Spirit the middle of the bunch. The debut readiness and target for FTOs
is clearly different. Noseda's Key Art was supposed to run at Windsor
on Monday when his first runner of the year (Paradise Dream) was second
in a farce of a race at Kempton with a very slow pace (still looking like
an attempt on the land-speed record compared to Yesterday's Ormonde Stakes,
though. He ran ok without looking to get past the leader who was allowed
to dawdle until approaching the final furlong. Getting half a second back
on any reasonable 2yo in 1.5 furlongs is a tough assignment especially
when the winner can get a split second break by choosing when to kick into
gear (in the same way that the jockeys behind Buccellati were beaten before
the 2 furlong sprint started. The number of middle distances horses ever
born that could give Buccellati a start, best track position on the faster
strip on the rail and beat him over 2 furlongs would be very short).
The market ended up believing in Paradise Dream enough to make him favourite
but after a drift & back with support for others. The 'expected' debuts
are often strongly supported. The first five last year had two at odds-on
and Glamorous Spirit was 11/8f. Key Art has a solid pedigree for the job
and the Market should be informative as to whether he is an ok one or here
A couple of good rivals with Monsieur Joe & the filly Absolute
Music The first of those made an above average debut for Walter Swinburn
when second at Windsor and is a half brother to a May 5f winner last year
in Cerito who was borderline Listed class (winning a nursery off the magic
OR88 figure to highlight the point). The quality of the field behind him
at Windsor seems very questionable so you are relying on Monsieur Joe progressing
well to STO but that feels like a good assumption. The trainer's other
early debuts this years have been promising while lacking real readiness
as you would expect. In that context Monsieur Joe made a better FTO effort
and also made a move late on in the race and finished the race off well
as a plus. The trainer has run 6 at Ascot in his short time with a licence
and the four in Group races have been well beaten. The runners below that
level have placed 2nd & 3rd at 2/1 & 7/1 so he is choosing the
right horses for those jobs. A solid profile to produce a good opponent
to Key Art and take advantage of any readiness or advantage shortfall.
The filly Absolute Music is a fascinating runner and the Market should
be able to help with how good she is. She was supposed to run at Doncaster
a week ago but a non-runner and she would have been her trainer's first
runner. He is notable for getting debut wins with his better 2yos and the
way the Doncaster race fell apart you think this filly would have won.
That thought was franked the following day when he ran a filly - High Spice
- against the colts at Newmarket on the following day. She started at 10/1
and comfortably & professionally, dealt with the colts and goes straight
to the Queen Mary. You presume that Absolute Music has worked with High
Spice in some form and the win for that filly has meant redirecting Absolute
Music to this more prestigious maiden than scuffling around at Donny. A
filly to take seriously and see how the Market reacts since trainer &
jockey know how she compares to High Spice.
Little Perisher is an interesting marker horse but should come up
short in this field. His trainer often runs this type in better races as
maidens and then forgets to win a race while he is ahead of the others
in precocity. The sort you could see still struggling to win a maiden and
trying nurseries in late season.
Richard Hannon starts Master Of Dance off in the race but the set-up
of the race means he will have to be Group class to win off a trainer preparation.
Hannon's record with Ascot debuts since 2002 is 3 from 23 with one in 2006
since 2004. Oddly the SPs of the three wins have been long enough to show
a profit. He started the season maiden Hold That Call (struggling off OR50s
these days) in the race in 2007 and the OR80+ type Roly Boy was 4th and
last in 2008 as 11/4. A £30,000 son of Noverre out of a dam who has
produced development 7f+ winners puts a lot of emphasis on the sire provided
the 5f go and quality. Overall the Ascot start-offs for the trainer have
been a mixed bag and 2008 was a good example. Three Ascot debuts saw the
ok winner from this race and two non-winners over the season with one disposed
of in a seller. The phrase 'Social Runner' for some of them by the looks
Clive Brittain clearly has a batch ready early in 2009 and Jira
is the fifth filly to run for his main patron owner Saaed Manana (Dubai
connected). The previous four have included 1 win by the useful looking
Misheer (owning a believable high class sprint pedigree) and a 3rd in a
weak race for a filly with a 10f+ pedigree. Another one by a stout sire
was well beaten at Windsor on Thursday. This one is not as stout but does
not look a 5f pedigree and you would be surprised if she could compete
here. If she can then she must be very high quality and will develop well
through the season. On balance, likely to be looking for a solid intro
to judge quality. The trainer has had two debuts at the course in recent
years with one for the useful later winner Yahrab & one for the overtried
Ghasiba who ran in Group 1 races but remained a maiden through her career.
In summary, and interesting three way match at the front of the profile
with Monsieur Joe a real obstacle to the two better looking debut types.
The market should help with what quality & readiness the newcomers
are. If Key Art is very good and expected to win then the vibes should
say so. Absolute Music has trained with a filly who would win this race
first time so the connections have a good line on what to expect.
A couple of point about the Thirsk Seller and first to note that
Reel Credit Crunch was declared before she placed in a Class 3 maiden at
Chester. Her run there was not an improvement but confirmation of the low
level form needed to win the race with Swilly Ferry not looking fully fit
and not seeing the race out again. It is also likely to be a real demonstration
of the major advantage racing on the lane next to the rail was at the meeting.
Leaving aside running less distance being on the rail just looked a faster
strip of ground. The newcomer winner - Metal Soldier - tracked Reel Credit
Crunch in the rail lane then nipped inside her to the better strip rather
than pressing on in lane 3 throughout the race like Swilly Ferry's jockey
(5-10lbs disadvantage say?).
Anyway, that effort would be good enough to win unless Lairy is
a better Nicholls debut. He had a strong record with Thirsk seller debuts
in 2008 with a win and a second and both runners won above seller level
later. This one was originally entered for a Redcar seller and the newcomers
to run so far this year from the stable have looked well short of readiness.
The way Mister Mannannan improved hugely from a solid looking debut another
indicator of that as much as the off-the-back flounderers.
Low quality in the Warwick Auction which is at the intermediate
5.5f distance. Kaspirit sets the standard on those that have run unless
Reddy To Star can show the support on debut was based on anything worthwhile.
His run was so lifeless that to expect a great leap forward is difficult.
Sweet Baby Jane is another 5f debut for Richard Fahey and would have a
chance off bottom weight off a decent trainer 5f debut. However, two more
moderate ones yesterday at the distance would make you wonder whether the
trainer is as forward as usual or has the overall quality.