Former Talksport man Charlie McCann marks your card with eight to follow on Saturday at Market Rasen, Newbury and Haydock. View selections below
There’s some terrific, and much missed, jump racing at Market Rasen, with both the Summer Plate and the Summer Hurdle attracting competitive fields. David Pipe’s Ballynagour drops down in grade heading the weights for the feature 2m 5f handicap chase, and must give almost a stone to the field in his attempt to get his head in front for the first time in over a year.
He is respected under Tom Scudamore, but preference lies instead with Tom George’s Cernunnos (2.45) under regular partner Barry Geraghty. The selection was progressive over the larger obstacles last term and was far from disgraced chasing home Ericht and Portway Flyer and in a pair of competitive handicap chases at Kempton in the spring. The form of both races has worked out well and he can hopefully reward each-way support from a 6lb higher mark.
The Summer Hurdle can go the way of Hassle (2.15) in search of the hat-trick for trainer Dr Richard Newland. The doctor boasts a terrific record in the race and looks to have ear-marked the Montjeu gelding for the £40,000 contest since acquiring the gelding at the sales earlier in the year. He remains unbeaten over timber for the yard after dotting-up last time out at Uttoxeter and should likewise reward each-way support under conditional jockey Charlie Hammond; who is excellent value for his 10lb claim.
The best of the action on the level comes from Newbury where Richard Hannon’s Majeste (2.00) should go one better after an excellent second on debut at Windsor. The well-bred sort ran Clive Cox’s well-touted juvenile Kodiline to a neck last week, the winner having the benefit of experience, and should have more to come.
Charlie Appleby’s Scottish (3.00) made an eye-catching return behind Time Test in the BetVictor Brigadier Gerard Stakes at Sandown and should take all the beating in the Listed Steventon Stakes under James Doyle. The selection was progressive for former handler Andrew Balding and should strip fitter to give yet further Saturday success for Team Godolphin.
The pair can double-up with Charming Thought (3.35) in the Gp 3 Hackwood Stakes after a similarly promising return after a lengthy lay-off. The Oasis Dream colt travelled ominously well before tiring last month at Salisbury on his first start for the best part of 20 months. He should improve for the run can reward each-way support on his preferred sounder surface.
Richard Fahey boasts a tremendous record in the £200,000 Wetherby’s Super Sprint and saddles six juveniles in his quest to seal back-to-back renewals. His sextet of runners all boast claims but Keith Dalgleish’s Clem Fandango (4.10) gets the nod to land a big pot for Middleham Park Racing. The well-bred filly finished an excellent third behind Lady Aurelia and Al Johrah in the Queen Mary at Royal Ascot and looks a progressive filly to keep on the right side of.
Aidan O’Brien has four of the 12 runners in The Irish Oaks at the Curragh with, Ribblesdale Stakes winner Even Song (5.45) unopposable after her Gp 2 success at the royal meeting. The beautifully-bred filly is a half-sister to the last two St Leger winners and, although boasting plenty of stamina in her pedigree, she showed a smart turn of foot to win readily under Ryan Moore last time out at the royal meeting. She looks sure to progress further and appeals at 4/6 to win, and Even money with BetVictor to win by a length or more.
Charlie Hills’ Jallota (8.05) should take all the beating up at Haydock and should justify favouritism in the 7f Condition Stakes under Jamie Spencer. The selection won a competitive handicap earlier in the season at York and progressed back into pattern company thereafter, finishing second last time out at Deauville. Soft ground shouldn’t inconvenience to the 5-y-o and he should go close to claiming a fourth career success.