Today, Paul Ferguson gives us three of his selections to follow over the coming Flat season. See Paul’s selections.
With a really quiet start to the week with an all-weather card at Wolverhampton and Windsor’s first meeting of the season all that’s on offer, I’ve decided to use today to put forward the first of my Flat horses to follow for the season.
Today, I’ve got three older horses for you, all of which have one thing in common (they all finished behind Nathaniel in the King Edward VII Stakes at Royal Ascot last season), and I’ll weigh in with my colts and fillies from the Classic generation whenever there’s a chance in the coming days.FIORENTE (Sir Michael Stoute)
Runner-up in the King Edward on just the third of his four career starts to date, Fiorente had won a Newbury maiden at the second time of asking last term, having not run as a two-year-old.
On debut he finished fifth to another of my trio to follow, World Domination, and the son of Monsun went on to reverse form at Royal Ascot when he was 5 lengths adrift of the subsequent King George winner.
On his final start at three, Sir Michael Stoute’s colt was beaten a neck by Namibian in the Group 3 Gordon Stakes, though he remains very much a horse of huge interest and one that is likely to progress massively from three to four.
Stoute thrives with such animals as a rule and the Hardwicke Stakes back at Royal Ascot is likely to be his mid season target, with the Ormonde at Chester’s May meeting a possible starting point (the Harbinger route of 2010).
MIJHAAR (Roger Varian)
The son of Shirocco finished fourth in the King Edward and has an almost identical profile to Fiorente, in that he won a maiden in May on his second career start.
Mijhaar had, however, run once at two when runner-up to Fulgur at Newbury, but he easily went one better when bolting up at Haydock by 7 lengths.
He appeared not to stay the 1m4f trip at Ascot and was duly dropped back in for the valuable three-year-old handicap at Newmarket’s July meeting over 10 furlongs, where he once again had to chase home Luca Cumani’s Fulgur.
It’s hard to know where Roger Varian will start him off, but he could be out fairly early as he appears to enjoy a bit of cut in the ground. Wherever he goes, there are plenty more races to be won with him.
WORLD DOMINATION (Sir Henry Cecil)
Last of 10 in the King Edward, World Domination made a hugely impressive winning debut at Newbury last May and was immediately being talked about as a Derby possible.
Sir Henry Cecil opted for the Dante Stakes at York to test out those Epsom hopes, but he could finish only fourth behind Carlton House and Seville. Too keen for his own good that day, he was again headstrong at Ascot and he was not seen again thereafter.
The Empire Maker colt appeals very much as the type to have matured over the winter and he could be an altogether different proposition this season.
Cecil has entered him in both the Tattersalls Gold Cup at the Curragh and the Coronation Cup at Epsom (both highly prestigious Group 1s), which indicates that he has done well during the close season, and he is another to look forward to in the months ahead.
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- AL FEROF won Supreme Novices’ Hurdle 10-1
- BENSALEM won Stewart Family Handicap 5-1
- BOBS WORTH won A Bartlett 15-8, 4/4 for year
- CAPTAIN CHRIS won Arkle Trophy 6-1
- FIRST LIEUTENANT won Neptune Investment 7-1
- (plus Grade 1 in Ireland 16-1)
- JAMES DE VASSY won Lanzarote Hurdle 8-1
- LONG RUN won King George 9-2, Gold Cup 7-2
- OSCAR WHISKY won Aintree Hurdle 6-1
- Peddlers Cross (Fighting Fifth Hurdle)
- Medermit (Scilly Isles Novices’ Chase)
- FINIAN’S RAINBOW (Maghull Novices’ Chase)
- WISHFULL THINKING (Manifesto Novices’ Chase)