Alan Thomson, the former Racing Editor at the Daily Record, picks 4 to follow on Saturday at Newbury, including the Spring Cup.
FRANKEL holds centre stage in the totesport.com Greenham Stakes at Newbury and Strong Suit appears the only logical danger to the ante-post 2000 Guineas favourite. On a cautionary note, Henry Cecil’s runners at the Craven meeting, while running well in the main, appeared just short of a gallop and it will be interesting to see how forward Frankel is on his much-vaunted reappearance. You can be sure Richard Hannon will have Strong Suit wound up and, on quick ground, this might not be the walkover many pundits are predicting.
The John Porter Stakes is an early port of call for some smart middle-distance performers but current underfoot conditions are against many of the chief protagonists, including Poet, Allied Powers, Clowance and Bridge Of Gold. With Indian Days carrying a penalty up in grade, this nice prize could be at the mercy of Michael Stoute’s VERDANT (2.05), who is asked to step up to the plate after some smart handicap form last season.
Cecil’s newcomer WORLD DOMINATION (4.15) has caught the eye of work-watchers and his Derby entrant makes his racecourse bow in the 1m 3f maiden. The market will tell us what is expected but he might not need to be at peak fitness to take this.
VOODOO PRINCE (5.25) is another talking horse making his first start and, as the first offspring of Ouija Board, he has created much interest. Ed Dunlop has given Lord Derby’s Voodoo Prince a Derby entry and, again, it will be fascinating to see if the colt lives up to the hype.
Paul Hanagan swerves the ride on Richard Fahey’s Prime Exhibit in the Totescoop6 Spring Mile at Newbury in favour of a double-header at Ripon and Doncaster, where he looks sure to be among the winners. Roger Charlton caused a 40-1 upset with Brunston in last year’s Spring Mile cavalry charge and his PROPONENT (3.45) has won over the course in the past.