Former Talksport man Charlie McCann marks your card with six to follow on Saturday at Goodwood, Newarket, Windsor and Cartmel. View selections below
Only five go to post for the feature race the Celebration Mile at Goodwood this afternoon and three-year-olds have been successful six times in the last eight renewals of this Group 2 contest. The classic generation are represented by the market leaders Thikriyaat (7/4 at BetVictor) and Zonderland (5/2) but at the prices I expect to see a big run from Arod (7/1 at BetVictor) who should bounce off the forecast good ground.
The selection is at his best when running on fast summer ground over a mile around a bend and he should have his optimum conditions this afternoon. Drawn in stall one the hope is that he gets an easy lead and settles in front for Jimmy Fortune who takes over in the saddle for the first time. The danger is the improving Thikriyaat who has won four of five career starts and his only defeat was at the hands of subsequent Group 1 winner Ribchester. At the prices I just favour Peter Chapple-Hyam’s Arod each way.
The listed March Stakes looks a modest renewal with John Gosden’s Mr Singh the highest rated horse in the race but he has only beaten one horse home in two starts at Goodwood and for that reason alone he is overlooked.
Platitude (3.55) was too keen for his own good in the Gordon Stakes over 12f here last time and will have to be more amenable to restraint if he is to finish his race stepped back up in trip. There is plenty of pace in the race which should help him settle and Platitude had looked a progressive colt prior to his latest run.
At Newmarket the listed Hopeful Stakes can go to Eastern Impact (4.10) and Richard Fahey who could have a real red-letter with fancied runners across the country. The selection has run well in the last two July Cups over C&D and suggested his turn was nigh when finishing runner up in a decent Group 3 at the Curragh last time.
The 3-y-old Raucous put up a career best when third in the Stewards’ Cup at Goodwood last time and looks a big danger for William Haggas but Eastern Impact looks sure to give his running and will be a tough nut to crack.
Saeed Bin Suroor’s Newmarket string have been blighted by a bug of late and Human Nature (4.45) will be his first runner since August 6th. The gelding has been off the track since winning a modest Lingfield event over 12 months ago and the trainer will want to see evidence that his yard are well-and-truly over what ailed them. Human Nature, however, was a juvenile I liked last season and I thought he might make up into a decent sprinter in time.
Windsor stage a cracking twilight card and the feature is the 10f Winter Hill Stakes and Ryan Moore rides the progressive Gordon Stakes winner Ulysses for Sir Michael Stoute. The colt is dropping back in trip, however, and the vote goes to Foundation (6.00) who started slowly in his first-time blinkers at Haydock last time having been gelded since his previous start which was in the French Derby.
I’m pleased to see Michael Bell drop Forecaster (4.50) down in trip from 10f to the extended mile as she looked to see this trip stretch her stamina at Bath last time although some would suggest she is not particularly resolute. I am prepared to give her one last chance with Jim Crowley (2/1 for the Jockey’s title at BetVictor) taking over in the saddle.
At Cartmel Schindler’s Prince (4.00) would not want the ground to worsen from the current description of good to soft in the stayers’ chase but he can run off the same mark as when third at Bangor last time and that looked a better race than today’s. The selection had previously won twice on fast ground and if the ground was to be genuinely good confidence would increase.