Man On The Spot: Make a Buck?
Channel 4 Racing provides coverage from Ascot, Newmarket and Redcar and we have the Man On The Spot verdicts for those races.
Buckstay (left): Napped to win the big handicap at Ascot.
14:15 Newmarket – British EBF Breeders' Fillies' Series Sprint Handicap
Most of these are upped in class with the exception of top weight STELLARTA. Michael Blanshard's mare has won in this grade at Windsor and went close again at Pontefract last time. It was soft ground when Dutch Destiny won at Haydock in July but Sweet Dragon Fly can effectively race off a lower mark than when beating Sixties Sue at Lingfield with an apprentice's allowance taken into account. Ginzan and Noble Act are recent winners likely to find this much tougher while Pixeleen, Summer Chorus and Emerald Loch are others with something to prove at this level. Owasey has been thereabouts over longer trips and attempts 6f for the first time today.
14:30 Ascot – Gigaset Cumberland Lodge Stakes
Three-year-olds have more than held their own in this Group 3 down the years and MOVE UP can strike another blow for the Classic generation. The Godolphin colt found a weak Group 2 in Turkey last month but has clearly improved for the step up to 1m4f and has scope for further improvement after just seven career starts. Sir Michael Stoute's pair Kings Fete and Arab Spring look closely matched and should be thereabouts but Western Hymn has squandered easier chances than this and finds little when push comes to shove. French import Sumbal could figure eased in grade but this may prove too hot for Duretto and Star Storm.
14:50 Newmarket – British Stallions Supporting EBF Breeders' Fillies' Series Mile
Qamarain and the progressive Carenot are a couple to consider on a long short-list. The latter's stablemate Muffri'Ha has come up short in tougher races than this recently and Haley Bop found only one too good in this grade at Ayr last time. Gratzie ran well in Class 2 company at Haydock and can figure but Lincoln Rocks is penalised for last week's victory at Mussselburgh. Crowning Glory is raised a couple of grades after completing a double while the maiden winners Labyrinth and Farandine have more scope than most. FOURTH WAY is also unexposed having been rested since finding life tough in the Group 3 Nell Gywn over 7f here back in April. Roger Varian's filly rates a sporting selection on her return to action and handicap debut.
15:05 Ascot – John Guest Bengough Stakes
All eyes here will be on Shalaa, whom Frankie described as the best two-year-old he'd ever sat on after he won the Middle Park last year. Unfortunately, the Gosden colt hasn't raced since so may be a little ring-rusty, though would obviously take all the beating if returning in top form. MEHRONISSA ran a cracker in the Sprint Cup at Haydock, only giving best inside the final furlong. That wasn't the strongest Group 1 ever staged but Ed Vaughan's filly is clearly still on an upward curve having beaten Ridge Ranger earlier at Pontefract and should go well. Strath Burn was behind at Haydock and also beaten by Naadirr at Doncaster in July and Don't Touch at Salisbury in June. Mobsta recorded a career-best when landing a Group 2 at the Curragh in May but reappears under a hefty penalty. Outback Traveller beat Ayr Gold Cup winner Brando in the Wokingham here in June and clearly found 5f too short at York but couldn't handle this grade at Newmarket last year.
15:15 Redcar – Totepool Two-Year-Old Trophy
Orewa has had a brilliant campaign for Brian Ellison and won one of these at Cork last month from today's rival WICK POWELL. Chris Hayes has been brought over to ride him again and it will be a surprise if he doesn't get involved though the runner-up is a massive 13lb better off for two lengths so can gain his revenge and land this. Medici Banchiere hasn't been able to cut it at Group 2 level since a facile victory at Carlisle but everything points to a big run from Mazyoun. Hugo Palmer's charge ran a superb race when chasing home Mubtasim in a similar race to this at Doncaster and with blinkers applied here will make a bold bid to go one better. The Wagon Wheel won a tough York nursery before disappointing slightly at Goodwood where she may not have been suited by the track. She has a nice draw and can get involved though Repton could provide a bigger threat. Richard Hannon's charge won a Salisbury maiden before tackling Group company at Goodwood and Sandown and this represents a drop in class.
15:25 Newmarket – British Stallions EBF Breeders' Fillies' Series Middle Distance Handicap
Sagaciously won at Goodwood the last time she competed in a handicap but she's 7lb higher today. Sharja Queen took a 14lb hike in the weights for winning at Salisbury in July and had earlier been beaten by Sightline at Chester. Imshivalla ran well at this level at Ayr recently and is preferred to recent Class 4 winners Pure Fantasy, High Hopes and Malmoosa while Paul Hanagan prefers the latter to both Shafafya and Zaakhir. HAGGLE wasn't beaten that far at Sandown despite finishing only sixth and was runner-up at Goodwood before that. Stepping up to middle-distances for the first time here, the Cumani filly, a half-sister to a couple of 1m2f winners, gets the nod.
15:40 Ascot – totescoop6 Challenge Cup Heritage Handicap
Dutch Law has already had a terrific season and beat Firmament, Squats, Suzi's Connoisseur and Heaven's Guest over course and distance last month. Librisa Breeze was second in the Royal Hunt Cup here in June and then beat Squats over track and trip. He was a respectable fourth in a Group 3 at York last time so goes on the short-list. Growl only found one too good when favourite for the Ayr Gold Cup but has yet to convince over this extra furlong. Remarkable wasn't disgraced behind Ribchester in the Jersey Stakes here in June so is worth a second look, as is the consistent Right Touch, but Afjaan is possibly better on the all-weather and over a mile. BUCKSTAY (NAP) is 8lb higher than when landing this 12 months ago but is at his best on the straight course here and has been in good form again lately, winning a conditions race at Chelmsford and finishing a close-up fourth in a Group 2 at Doncaster. The top weight may be capable of staging a repeat, though Donncha has a consistent record in races of this type and will be staying on again at the death.
16:00 Newmarket – Kingdom of Bahrain Sun Chariot Stakes
ALICE SPRINGS won Group 1 races either side of a below-par effort at Deauville and added to an earlier success in the Falmouth with an emphatic win in the Matron Stakes at Leopardstown last time. Aidan O'Brien's filly is still improving on that evidence and rates the one to beat. France has a fine recent record in the race and Ervedya, a three-time Group 1 winner including last year's Coronation Stakes at Ascot, is preferred to Volta and Siyoushake. Arabian Queen has a bit to find with Jean-Claude Rouget's filly on Coronation running as she drops back in distance while Always Smile was third to Alice Springs in the Falmouth with Irish Rookie further behind. Epsom Icon looks outclassed but Smart Call is harder to assess as she landed a couple of Grade 1 races in her native South Africa back in January and has her first start since.
16:15 Ascot – Ascot And Camra 10th Anniversary Rous Stakes
Sole Power won the King's Stand Stakes here in 2013 and 2014 but has been looking a shadow of his former self this year and was behind Iffranesia in the Flying Five at the Curragh last month. It's difficult to know what to expect from Norwegian raider Easy Road but he has won a Group 3 and was successful at Doncaster around this time last year. Kimberella has been running really well in tough handicaps all summer and deserves a crack at this level but Double Up hasn't managed a win this year and was disappointing last time at Beverley when only third. PRICELESS showed a nice turn of foot to get back to winning ways at Doncaster. That was her first try over the minimum so there may be more to come and she can defy her penalty and beat the tough Willytheconqueror and veteran Medicean Man.
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