Massaat ‘might need it’


Owen Burrows has warned Massaat is likely to be in need of the run in the Betfred Hungerford Stakes at Newbury on Saturday.

Last year's 2000 Guineas runner-up will be dropped back down to seven furlongs for the first time since October 2015 when he makes his seasonal return in the Group Two contest.

The son of Teofilo, who also finished down the field in last year's Epsom Derby, has not been seen since he trailed home last in a Group Three at Salisbury last August.

Burrows said: "Massaat is as fit as I can get him at home but he will be rusty and he will come on for it.

"I would not say he has grown a lot upwards but he has certainly filled out – but he was always a big horse.

"He is a year older now and is not the easiest to get fit as he doesn't overdo himself at home, but I have been happy with his work.

"It is a good starting point for him and hopefully if he retains his old ability he should run a good race.

"It's been a long year with him and he is the type of horse you don't want to be without.

"I am looking forward to getting him back out."

Chris Wall believes a line can be put through the Royal Ascot run of Mix And Mingle as she bids to give the Newmarket handler a second Pattern race winner this week after First Sitting won the Prix Gontaut-Biron at Deauville on Tuesday.

Wall said: "Her main mid-season target had been the Oak Tree at Goodwood but it came up too soft for her.

"Two things worked against her in the Duke of Cambridge at Ascot.

"She had an impossible task from her draw as low numbers didn't have a hope in hell that day.

"We also found out that she just doesn't stay a mile. We can draw a line through that. It was not representative of what she can do.

"She won her Group Three well over seven furlongs. She is fresh and well and if it dries up, all the better.

"She is in great form and I could not be more happier with her."

John Gosden won the Hungerford for a sixth time with Richard Pankhurst last year and will saddle Nathra and Daban.

Bruce Raymond, racing manager for their owner Abdullah Saeed Al Naboodah, said: "Nathra and Daban breezed very well the other morning and they both looked good.

"Nathra got boxed in on her return at Ascot and could not get any sort of run at all, so you can forget that run completely.

"Daban was sixth in the Jersey last time out. We felt that she was too close to a very fast pace and she simply could not keep up with it.

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"John is running them both in the race as they need to run somewhere and I am sure he has got something in mind for them both later on."

Connections of the Roger Varian-trained Spangled are hoping she can make up for lost time on what will be her first start in 344 days.

Chris Richardson, racing manager to owners Cheveley Park Stud, said: "We were hoping to run her at Goodwood but the ground was too soft.

"Drying conditions will suit her better. She had a nasty foot abscess in the spring and which took a while to come right which was frustrating.

"We took a view to be very patient and let it clear up. She is sound now and Roger has been very pleased with her.

"I think we will possible step her up to a mile but it makes sense to start her back at seven."

The David Simcock-trained Breton Rock will bid to defy a penalty for his victory in the Lennox Stakes at Goodwood, while Kaspersky makes what is likely to be his final start in Britain for Jane Chapple-Hyam before being shipped out to Australia.

Ibn Malik (Charlie Hills), Librisa Breeze (Dean Ivory), Sir Dancealot (David Elsworth) and Poet's Vanity (Andrew Balding) complete the line-up.

Tate out to make Hey

James Tate is keeping his fingers crossed Hay Gaman will get his favoured surface in the Denford Stakes at Newbury on Saturday.

The two-year-old will attempt to back up his last-time-out victory at Newmarket as he steps up to Listed level in the seven-furlong heat – better known as the Washington Singer Stakes.

Tate said: "We always thought he had plenty of ability but we think the key to him is racing on easy ground.

"We hope it stays good to soft or something like that and if it does we go there quite confident.

"Although there were only three horses in his race last time he did a good time and they were useful horses he beat.

"He also looked pretty good when he won in the driving rain two races before that.

"The two times he has been beat it was quite quick on both occasions.

"I don't think he has reached his ceiling yet and trip wise I think seven (furlongs) is his optimum trip as a two-year-old."

George Scott hopes Another Batt can give another good account of himself after he finished a close second in a Listed race at Ascot in July on what was his first try over this trip.

He said: "I've been pleased with him since Ascot, where he took a big step forward.

"Potentially, that could have been because of the cut in the ground, but it was more likely because of the step up in trip as I always thought he would be better over seven furlongs plus.

"He is what he says on the tin. He is very straightforward and always gives his running.

"He could be vulnerable to a slightly less exposed horse but he is the one to beat and he's a really tough horse.

"We will be popping him out and hoping he can use his experience."

Red Mist holds a number of big entries later in the season, but trainer Simon Crisford will only consider those options if he can build upon a promising debut victory at Sandown.

Crisford said: "Red Mist has pleased us since that race at Sandown and he has been working nicely.

"It is an important race and it looks quite punchy, with some high-quality horses in there.

"He has got some big entries but that doesn't mean he is going to take them up.

"He has got to prove himself here before we start talking about big entries.

"He has got a great attitude and that will stand him in good stead. He is going there fit and well and we will find out how good he is on Saturday."

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