Former Talksport man Charlie McCann marks your card with six to follow on Saturday at Goodwood and Newmarket. View selections below
Final day of Glorious Goodwood and the Hannon/Hughes combination have been the star attractions so far this week and I hope their luck continues in the 12f handicap with Pether’s Moon (2.40) who is 3lb better off with Havana Cooler for the three-quarters-of-a-length he was behind at Newmarket last time; there is the prospect of a shower on Saturday morning and any further rain would be a big help to this progressive colt.
Royal Skies of Mark Johnston looks a big danger having looked a non-stayer in the Queen’s Vase at Royal Ascot over 2 miles last time; he had previously looked a most progressive typical Johnson improver and the Middleham handler saddles three in the race although stable jockey Joe Fanning rides Royal Skies which suggests he is the yard’s first-string.
The Nassau Stakes is the second Group 1 race of the week and is a wonderful renewal of this 10 furlong contest for fillies and mares; the classic generation have won four of the last six renewals and there is an army of 3-year-olds declared including 1000 Guineas winner Sky Lantern, runner up Just The Judge and Oaks second Secret Gesture. The form of Sky Lantern’s recent controversial defeat to Elusive Kate in the Falmouth has been franked by the winner, subsequently, bolting up in the Prix Rothschild last weekend and she is without question the one to beat.
Integral (3.15) is unbeaten in two starts and I know it is a cliché but she could be anything and although she is likely to improve again as a 4-year-old her trainer (Sir Michael Stoute) would not pitch her into this august company unless he thought she was capable of giving a good account of herself. She fell out of the stalls when winning at Sandown last time and in this big field she will need to be more professional from her plum draw in stall 1 if she is to maintain her unbeaten record.
The Stewards’ Cup is one of the big betting races of the year and we are paying 5 places at BetVictor on the race and the hope is that the first-time blinkers and return to six furlong will do the business for Burwaaz (3.50) and Ed Dunlop having run well in the Bunbury Cup before his stamina gave way over 7f last time. He has never fulfilled his potential and has only a 5f maiden win at Leicester to his name, but he is slowly dropping in the weights and, if the headgear works the oracle, he can reward each way support at 33/1.
War Spirit (4.25) holds a number of big-race entries later in the year and it is interesting that stable jockey Richard Hughes chooses this newcomer over After The Goldrush who showed plenty when runner up at Salisbury on debut giving the impression that this additional furlong would suit. The selection has a good draw in stall one but he needs to get out of the traps quickly on debut or he might find himself behind a wall of horses.
Mezel (4.50) won a Doncaster maiden on his second start and, although the handicapper has taken few chances, he can follow up in the 7f nursery off a mark of 77; the hope is that it is a red-letter-day for jockey Paul Hanagan who again takes the mount.
Love Marmalade ran very well in defeat at Ascot last weekend and will make a bold show at Newmarket in their 10f handicap but preference goes to Velox (3.30) trained by Luca Cumani who looked unfortunate not to follow up his Leicester success at Haydock on his handicap debut off a 5lb lower mark. Adam Kirby takes over from Kieren Fallon in a fascinating little race.