Former Talksport man Charlie McCann marks your card with seven to follow on Saturday at Haydock, Ascot and newmarket. View selections below
Ascot once again plays host to The Shergar Cup but the best racing comes at Haydock Park and there is a cracking opening nursery which van go to the Richard Hannon trained Fuwairt (1.50) in receipt of 10lbs from the filly Patience Alexander who finished third in the Group 3 Albany Stakes at Royal Ascot last time.
Patience Alexander holds an entry in the Lowther and the Nunthorpe at York later in the month and is clearly very quick but if the ground deteriorates as forecast the selection has winning form on soft ground and Ryan Moore to do the steering with Frankie Dettori required at Ascot.
The Haydock executive will be delighted by the turnout for the Rose Of Lancaster Stakes and True Story and Hillstar head the market as 7/2 co favs with BetVictor and the latter is a fascinating contender especially if the forecast rain arrives. Third in the Dante behind subsequent French Derby winner The Grey Gatsby this represents a drop in class for the colt who has performed admirably in Group 1 company since beaten only 4 lengths in the Coral Eclipse Stakes last time.
Hillstar is a model of consistency having finished runner up in his last three starts including to Cavalryman on the July course last time. That form has been franked by the winner following up in the Goodwood Cup but soft ground would be a concern for the son of Danehill Dancer and he is overlooked in lieu of the forecast.
At the odds I am prepared to take a chance on Educate (2.55) at 7/1 each way with BetVictor but only if the ground is soft; the selection has been running well on ground faster than ideal of late but he comes into his own when the mud is flying and could be the value in a competitive renewal.
The listed Dick Hern Fillies’ Stakes represents a drop in class for Lightning Thunder and she is a worthy favourite having finished in the frame in both the Newmarket and Irish Guineas. She has 4lbs and more in hand of her eight rivals but they SP’s of the winners of this corresponding event in the three years it has been run have been 11/1, 13/2 and 10/1.The Olly Stevens yard have been quiet of late and at the forecast price of Even money she is overlooked in favour of the progressive Solar Magic (3.25) who has improved with each start and suggested she was ready for a step up in class when landing her maiden last time.
Provenance, the Galileo half-sister to Group One winner Integral, would be a confident selection on fast ground in the Mile handicap but dropping back in trip Provident Spirit (4.00) gets the vote for John Gosden having appeared not to get home over an additional furlong last time. He has good form on soft ground having been beaten just over a length by That Is The Spirit (rated 106) at Doncaster on debut and remains open to further improvement.
The finale is a terrific contest and there won’t be many getting an early dart and missing what is, arguably, the best race on the card. Gwafa beat trees at Newmarket last time but is a colt I have plenty of time for as is Double Bluff but Satellite (5.05) holds an entry in the Gt Voltigeur at York in a couple of weeks’ time and can defy an 8lb rise for finishing runner up at Doncaster last time.
At Ascot Mr Gallivanter (3.15) is well drawn for one who likes to race prominently and he will lack for nothing from the saddle with Craig Williams doing the steering. The selection only has one career success to his name but if any of the forecast showers hit the track he would be better served than most to cope with any deterioration in conditions.
At Newmarket Godolphin have saddled the winner of the Sweet Solera Stakes for the last five years and they can maintain that sequence with Winters Moon (3.35) who was a winner over today’s C&D on debut but must improve significantly in what looks a red-hot renewal of this Group 3 event .