Paul Ferguson has two selections for us from Newmarket on Thursday; Matrooh in the 3.15 and Ashdan at 4.25. Compare odds and bet.
Newmarket stages a cracking card for the opening day of the July meeting and, while odds-on favourite Montiridge has plenty in his favour dropping back in to Listed company following his narrow second in the Jersey Stakes, he is taken on with Ashdan (4:25) in the Insure Pink Stubbs Stakes.
John Gosden’s Dansili colt is making his belated seasonal reappearance this afternoon, but was a smart two-year-old and only met with defeat for the first time when fourth to Dawn Approach in the Dewhurst, when the ground would have been on the easy side for him.
Bred to appreciate further this year and likely to come on for the run, William Buick’s mount may still be good enough to make a winning return, as he receives a handy 3lbs from the market leader. The application of the first time hood is slightly off-putting, but my phobia of headgear can often prove costly (to me anyway) so I’m prepared to take a chance on him, with Coral offering 10/3 overnight.
Earlier on the card, Ashdan’s stable-mate Feel Like Dancing sets the standard in the Bahrain Trophy, based on his Queen’s Vase second, but faces several interesting young stayers in the opener, including Pontefract winner Dare To Achieve.
The July Stakes looks another competitive Group contest, with Sir John Hawkins and Figure Of Speech both impressing in winning their respective maidens and the former obviously went on to run a sound race in the Coventry Stakes last time.
There looks plenty of depth to this contest however, so the day’s other selection comes in the Boylesports.com Download Our App Handicap, in the shape of the lightly-raced Matrooh (3:15).
Selected here when third in a warm Doncaster handicap over a mile last month, William Haggas’ Distorted Humor is better than the bare result and looked smart when winning his maiden at the same track. The form of his latest third has been well advertised since, with winner Remote scoring in Group company at Ascot and runner-up Baltic Knight winning a Listed race at York next time.
The selection runs off the same mark today (87) and could well improve for the step up in trip, so looks sure to run a big race, though there are plenty of possible dangers, including Britannia second Tarikhi.
With that in mind, the selection should be backed each-way, with Betfred offering 5/1 and ¼ odds to 4 places.
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Last Year’s Book Results – Leading Prospects:
- SPRINTER SACRE – Unbeaten – winner at Aintree & Cheltenham
- SIMONSIG – Winner at Aintree & Cheltenham
- CINDERS AND ASHES – 10/1 winner of Supreme Novices Hurdle
- BOBS WORTH – 9/2 winner of the RSA Chase
- MENORAH & SILVINIACO CONTI – Both Aintree Winners
- SIR DES CHAMPS – Unbeaten inc 3/1 Jewson Cheltenham Winner
- FINGAL BAY – Won 4 times inc Challow Hurdle
- RAYA STAR – 10/3 winner at Wetherby, 12/1 Ladbroke Hurdle winner, 15/2 Scottish Champion Hurdle winner
- AMBION WOOD – 14/1 EBF Final Sandown winner
- CHAMPION COURT – 6/1 G2 Dipper Novices Chase winner
- PALACE JESTER – 14/1 winner at FFos Las
- SWINCOMBE FLAME – Hat-trick winner inc Lanzarote Hurdle at 9/2
- TEAFOR THREE – 5/1 NH Cheltenham Chase winner (Manifesto Novices’ Chase)