Photo : Mark Cranham
What a first day of the meeting that was. I got ANIMAL KINGDOM way wrong, but it just affirmed the believe about transferring dirt form to grass – not many can do it. TORONADO ran a cracker for me and despite his defeat I was pleased DAWN APPROACH won to end his Epsom nightmare. I also thought MYSTERIOUS MAN ran a cracker and he is one to watch out for next time. Hero of the day has to be JONNY MURTAGH who proved again what a brilliant jockey he is in sprint races. On to Wednesday, and hopefully a winner!
GALE FORCE TEN has the Irish Guineas form in his favour here and ran a decent race in the Norfolk last year, however I don't fancy him here. GARSWOOD was a horse hyped up for the 2000 Guineas and he got nowhere near and again I think this level is too much for him. BLAINE is interesting, he won the Gimcrack last year but has then disappointed in the Middle Park and in France. On better ground though he could run a big race at 50-1 when I type this. My money is on MUTIN, he is four from four, including on a good surface. He has won at listed level, looked like he could run at this level well and the drop back shouldn't hinder him.
Selections – MUTIN (unplaced) & BLAINE e/w (unplaced)
DUKE OF CAMBRIDGE STAKES
This race revolves around three horses for me. DUNTLE has some excellent form and has shown it over course and distance and she could be very smart. CHIGUN was impressive when winning the Abu Dabi stakes at the Curragh. However, my preference is for DANK who is a highly progressive and talented filly. She defeated CHIGUN on her last run and was giving her 3lbs. Today they are off level weights and the ground will suit too. One of my best bets of the meeting.
Selections – DANK (nap) (3rd – 7-2)
PRINCE OF WALES'S STAKES
Alot has been said about CAMELOT and that his Classic crop weren't the best and that he defeated nothing. For me he stills needs credit on what he did achieve, and almost achieved. On reflection now was ENCKE drugged up by Zarooni? Anyway, he has a great chance and after a run I think he will reverse placings with AL KAZEEM. This horse has got better and better and his trainer rates him highly and rightly so, but I just think he is a level below top class. My money is on THE FUGUE in this race, if she is fully tuned up with conditions to suit, last year's Nassau winner could swoop late and take this.
Selection – THE FUGUE (nb) (3rd – 11-2)
ROYAL HUNT CUP
If I pick the winner of this, or if anyone does, you know you're drawing a tidy sum. Andrew Balding has been bigging up STIRRING BALLAD leading up to this, she has done well but I don't think she'll take this. Behind her at Kempton when LILY'S ANGEL won was BURKE'S ROCK, she could also run a big race from a high draw. GLOBAL VILLAGE will run his race again from the other side and is consistent here and could nab a place. I can't have PRINCE OF JOHANNE on current form, despite an improvement last time,but he loves these big fields. ES QUE LOVE is a horse who I firmly believe will take a big handicap like this over a mile. He did so first time out at Kempton this year and is now 3lbs lower than that success. He has a high draw and ran well in defeat on Saturday at Musselburgh with the same jockey on board, interestingly, he's on the same mark as that today!
Selection – ES QUE LOVE e/w (unplaced)
QUEEN MARY STAKES
BELDALE MEMORY will be favourite or near to it on the back of her success in the Marygate Stakes at York, however, she could be softer ground dependant and that is worth taking her on for. Hannon's trio will be popular and they haven't struck yet. My preference here is for QUATOUR, she was incredibly impressive when bounding away to take the Lily Agnes Stakes at Chester. In my opinion the ground beat her at York. The yard took this last year with CEILING KITTY and this horse has took the same route and I just think the ground in a fast run race with play into her strengths and 25-1 as I write this is huge!
Selection – QUATOUR (treble) (unplaced)
NARGYS is an interesting runner, only an abysmal run in the Nell Gwyn stopped her running in the Guineas when touted up as a class horse by Keiren Fallon, she's not worth giving up on, but this is too much for her. WOODLAND ARIA was impressive first time out and then the trip seemed too much after that run. Returned to 7f last time she won well, and I think that is her trip, not this! My selection for the race is ANNIE'S FORTUNE, she ran well behind WATERWAY RUN in the Oh So Sharp stakes and is a full 6lbs less in the ratings today, that is a very appealing mark for me for a horse that could well be a shade better than this level.
Selection – ANNIE'S FORTUNE e/w (unplaced)
Whatever happens on Day 2, lets hope it is as good as Day 1. Sit back and enjoy, bet within your means and good luck.
BLOG STATS :
Naps 39/179 = 21.8%
Wins 161/907 = 17.8%
Placed 241/907 = 26.6%
Win and Placed = 44.3%
@Tweet_Naps overall record. Click the link. All Time Profit/Loss currently +£60.33