Tag Archives: John Gosden

Irish 2000 Guineas (G1)

The Irish Guineas has been lit up with the news that Too Darn Hot will come to the Curragh, beaten over 10F in the Dante at York, the petrol gauge running empty in the last furlong, John Gosden has decided to strike while the iron’s hot saying he came out of York so well and fresh he need’s to get another run into him.

Decrypt retuning on debut last year at the Curragh

Europe’s top-rated two-year-old who took all before him, culminating in a very impressive Dewhurst win will face Magna Grecia, an unsatisfactory 2000 Guineas winner at Newmarket who has 6 lbs to find with Too Darn Hot on official ratings despite a classic win.

Surely it’s a two horse race, so the market says, 5/4 about the English horse 6/4 about the Irish horse, 8/1 bar.

As a juvenile last October Magna Grecia took the Vertem Futurity beating Pheonix Of Spain whom we’ve not seen since, only a head separated them. Prior to that Charlie Hills colt was 1¾L behind Too Darn Hot in the Champagne Stakes at Doncaster in September. The issue for him is not only does he have to bridge the gap with the principles, he also has to do it in his first run of the season.

Skardu has 4¼L to find with Magna Grecia on his Newmarket third. The Craven winner was quietly fancied by connections going into the Guineas and didn’t disappoint in what was a messy race, they split into two groups. Magna Grecia stayed on the rail with another pair, Willie Haggas’s colt came up the middle with the main group, including Emaraaty Ana. He finished strongly to head Madhmoon to finish third. He must have felt like the winner. The fact that Magna Grecia and the second, King Of Change came from the rail trio suggests they was a definite advantage to the near side on the day, whether the advantage came from pace or track bias will only be told here.

Shelir crosses the road from Roswell House coming into the race not having had a juvenile campaign. His debut, a winning one at Navan in March was followed by a Tetrarch Stakes win here at the Curragh in April. He was professional about how he went about it and he will improve again. I Am Superman, favourite for the Tetrarch faded close home to finish fifth and he’ll also come on. Jim Bolger’s representative, Guaranteed goes more in hope than confidence, he won the Eyrefeild Stakes last season’s end.

Ballydoyle also sends the exposed Van Beethoven, the most experienced in the race, this being his twelfth run. He was at Longchamp two weeks ago for the Poulains finishing sixth to Persian King beaten 5L. He’s joined by stable companions Globe Theatre the pacesetter, and Mohawk who reverts back to a mile from 10F where he ran second in the Dee Stakes at Chester. Old Glory, an expensive yearling son of Frankel at €1.6m will have a lot to do given his best form was third in the Killavullan Stakes at Leopardstown last October.

Old Glory at Leopardstown last year

Decrypt, to change electronic information or signals that were stored, written, or sent in the form of a secret code may the message to interpret here. Paddy Twomey introduced him at this meeting last year where he ran second in a maiden. He returned to the Curragh two weeks later to win his maiden with Lady Kaya making her debut back in third. Hillwalker also debuting filled forth, he went on to win at Listed level at Gowan Park. Decrypt’s racecourse return was left to Cork this year where over 7F he was a very easy and impressive winner.

Of course he’s a mountain to climb, Too Darn Hot looked unbeatable last year but this year he’s been beaten, the drop in trip may well restore his shine. Magna Grecia might not have been flattered at Newmarket, he might just have outpaced them. If that’s the case, yes it’s a two horse race, and one hell of a cracker at that. However, if this has come too soon after York, a nine-day break for Too Darn Hot and the split in the Guineas field led to track bias then there is a message here to be deciphered.

Recommendation: Decrypt 20/1 ew

Follow the 2019 G1 Pattern Racing year in championship format by clicking on the links below.

PRWC 2019 Horse, PRWC 2019 Jockey, PRWC 2019 Trainer, PRWC 2019 Sire, PRWC 2019 Owner, PRWC 2019 Breeder

View last years championships here by clicking on the links below.

PRWC 2018 Horse, PRWC 2018 Jockey, PRWC 2018 Trainer, PRWC 2018 Sire, PRWC 2018 Owner, PRWC 2018 Breeder

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Prix De L’Arc De Triomphe

Golden Horn after winning at Leopardstown

Golden Horn after winning at Leopardstown

Treve’s bid for history has in the last 48 hours gone from some certainty to some doubt judged by the drift in the market from odds on to odds against. Is the market right?

She looked imperious in the Prix Vermille 3 weeks ago when she absolutely smashed the field with the release of her tremendous turn of foot. Thierry Jarnet could hardly contain her. She wanted to cruise, she wanted to travel but those around her were incapable of coming near matching her stride. She made good fillies including Arabian Queen who beat Golden Horn at York look very ordinary. When she was finally given her head she flew and in a matter of strides it was all over. She sauntered up Longchamps home straight digging deep into the very soft turf with each step lifting her further and higher giving her the chance to extend her stride to the full. Magnificent to watch.

Her trainer Criquette Head has timed her season beautifully. Prior to the Vermille she had two spins around Saint Cloud in the Prix Corrida and Grand Prix De Saint Cloud giving her the perfect preparation for this third Arc tilt. Unlike last year everything has gone right and all credit to her trainer as she comes here in the form of her life.

So why has the market got the jitters?

It was after all the same weekend we saw the Champion Stakes and the Prix Vermille. Within 24 hours of Golden Horn’s success at Leopardstown the market decided that Treve’s Vermille performance put considerable distance between her and her all her market rivals. Maybe it was the controversial finish at Leopardstown that clouded the judgement. Golden Horn you felt always had the measure of Free Eagle even if he did put him out of the race.

It’s the ground is the great leveler.

Golden Horn’s owner has expressed the opinion his colt would easily beat Treve on fast ground. Considering last year’s Prince Of Wales’s Stakes it’s a statement not without foundation. Treve couldn’t let herself down on the lighting quick ground at Royal Ascot that day and up against a top class filly who totally loved the surface The Fugue easily had her measure.

The issue here is the ground while very much coming the way of the Golden Horn camp it is still not what he really really wants, quick, lighting quick. That’s the surface that brought out the best in him in the Derby and Eclipse when he could hear his feet rattle. It was not so at York when Arabian Queen turned him over in what was akin to Japan’s Rugby World Cup performance against South Africa. John Gosden’s view has been they got the tactics wrong on the Knavesmire rather than the horse just couldn’t reproduce his speed on a surface less than quick.

So the ground, likely to be good, won’t be either’s first love, the questions are then who’ll like it more than the other and will that be enough to floor the rest of the field.

As ever the Arc produces the best middle distance horses of the last few years to compete against each other. This year is no different. It’s regrettable no Japanese challenger has emerged however New Bay who was given an impossible task in the French Guineas when trying to come from last to first (nearly making it) then showed his class by winning the French Derby. He’s since won on heavy at Deauville and put in a very smooth performance in his prep over course and distance in the Prix Neil.

Free Eagle surely can’t keep revving the engine in the last two furlongs. When he came upsides Golden Horn at Leopardstown he looked to be in top gear and it’s hard to imagine his stamina will stretch another two furlongs. Found will pose more of a threat. She was forgotten in the controversy but she ran a fine race to be second and will surely benefit from the step up in trip. She’ll also benefit from the weight for age and fillies allowances from the field. Mention must also be made of Tapestry the Yorkshire Oaks winner of last year (where she beat Taghrooda) who made a highly encouraging return to the track in the Blandford Stakes.

Found leaves the ring at Leopardstown

Found leaves the ring at Leopardstown

Of the others Flintshire returned to winning ways in America in the Sword Dancer having chased down Treve here last year. The three-year old Erupt did exactly that in his first four runs but hated the soft ground in the Prix Neil. Eagle Top was beaten a nose by Postponed in the King George who then ran a faster time than Treve in the Prix Foy. There all good horses.

As ever the Arc will produce a cracking race. Treve has to match Corrida (1936 & 1937 winner) as the only mare to win it as a five-year old. Golden Horn or New Bay on the other hand would join a long list of winning three-year old colts. Should either prevail they would be the 47th to do it. Found would be the 13th three-year old filly. History is not on Treve’s side.

The draw often is a feature in the Arc. Treve is drawn in the middle in stall 8 which means she might encounter traffic problems. Golden Horn and Found must overcome wide draws from 14 and 15.

With the pacemaker drawn in 2 New Bay breaking from stall 5 is given a considerable advantage. He can break and track the pacemaker and when she falls away take control of the race and steal a march on them. If Treve’s trapped in a pocket there’ll be serious questions asked of her turn of foot. She’ll no doubt answer and with Golden Horn, Tapestry and Found coming there too it promises to be mouth watering finish. New Bay can hold on.

Recommendations: New Bay 5/1 win 

                                        Found and Tapestry coupled on the pari mutual e/w

 

The Lennox Stakes (Group 2)

Glorious Goodwood with the most picturesque backdrop in racing kicks off with the highlight of the first day being the Group 2 Lennox Stakes over 7 furlongs.

It’s attracted a field of twelve headed by Aljamaaheer the recent winner of the Summer Mile at Ascot. He provides a decent benchmark having run third to Farhh in the Lockinge and second to Declaration Of War in the Queen Anne, both Group 1 events over a mile.

Producer, the choice of Richard Hughes is one of three from the Richard Hannon yard. He has the scalp of Aljamaaheer over 7 f in April at Listed level and last time out at Group 3 level in the Criterion Stakes at Newmarket he stepped up further to beat Red Jazz 3/4 L.

Of the other Hannon runners Libranno hasn’t shown the form this year that saw him win three times at Group 2 level. His last win over this distance was in the Park Stakes last September while Professor the third Hannon runner has won four of the last five, the last two at Listed level.

Ryan Moore gets the leg up on Garswood from Richard Fahey. He didn’t make an impression in the Guineas when beaten 9 1/2 L by Dawn Approach but did better when fourth to Gale Force Ten in the Group 3 Jersey Stakes.

John Gosden’s Fencing has been somewhat of a disappointment . Tried at top level on at least four occasions (never up to it) he has only ever won at Listed level.

Casper Netscher, a triple Group 2 winner, makes his seasonal racecourse apperance for David Simmcock. He ran an absolute cracker last year in the Prix Jacques Le Marois when running fifth to Excelbration going down only 2 L. Cityscape, Elusive Kate and Moonlight Cloud also finished in front of him. All of them proven Group 1 winners. He is also a winner first time out as a two year old and three year old.

Krypton Factor is by far the biggest money winner here having banked over £1.2m already but this 7 f will surely test his stamina to the limit. Having broken the gate in the July Cup forcing his withdrawal, he was then below par the following week when dropping in class in the Hackwood Stakes over 6 f when third to Heeraat.

It’s hard to make a case for Boom And Bust as he’s only ever won at a mile while Pastoural Player has 12 1/2 L to make up with Aljamaaheer on Summer Mile running.

Joint top rated on official ratings on a mark of 116 are Aljamaaheer and Casper Netscher. The former is 5/2 while the latter is 10/1. A reproduction of the Deauville form would put the Dutch master on top.

Recommendation : Caspar Netscher 10/1 win

The Park Hill Stakes (Group 2)

Run over the St Ledger distance of a mile and 6 furlongs this race is restricted to fillies and mares three years or older. Nine go to post with the Sir Henry Cecil trained Wild Coco top rated on 113. A belated return to the racecourse for the Group 3 Lillie Langtry Stakes over the same distance at Goodwood suggests Henry always had an autumn campaign in mind for her. She had run in the same race the year before, after two good wins, going off favourite but didn’t do herself justice. It would appear a year’s break did her all the good in the world and she’d no problem putting the race to bed to win comfortably by 2 3/4 L.

On rating The Queens Estimate is next best off a mark of 110. Trained by Sir Michael Stoute she was third to Wild Coco at Goodwood having previously won the Queens Vase over 16 f and the way she’d stayed on at Goodwood suggests 14 f may have been a bit on the sharp side for her.

Kailani was an impressive winner of the Pretty Poly Stakes and as a result went on to represent Godolphin in the Oaks. It didn’t happen for her as she was held up out the back and when she came with a run suffered interference with Maybe effectively ending her chances. A quick return for the Ribblesdale didn’t work where slow out of the stalls again effectively ended her chances. She’s a daughter of duel Oaks winner Kazzia (suggesting stamina not an issue) and having been put away since Ascot, if she can regain her spring form she’s not out of this.

Ambivalent is a filly on the improve, backed to win off a mark of 72 in a Nottingham handicap she duly obliged. Roger Varian stepped her into Listed company after that in the Aphrodite Stakes where market exuberance sent her off favourite but inexperience at the level saw her run well in third. She followed up in the Chalice Stakes, Listed class again, this time getting the better of the favourite Set To Music. The question with her is how she’ll cope with the extra 2 f on quick ground.

Cracking Lass, the oldest mare in the field at six has only managed three wins in twenty one attempts. Arguably the best of her form came in this race last year when beaten 11 L and connections have decided to give it another try on the back of an encouraging third in her comeback run in the Galtres Stakes. Bite Of The Cherry was a L behind having previously been a 5 L winner of a Newmarket handicap over 13 f.

Hazel Lavery won the Aphrodite (Ambivalent in behind) and was then sent to contest the Lillie Langtry won by Wild Coco but didn’t fire. She may not have coped with the track at Goodwood and Doncaster may suit better.

Gallipot is a winner of two recent all weather Kempton handicaps both over 11 f. She’s a daughter of Galileo out of a Spinning World mare and unlikely John Gosden would pitch her in here unless she had a chance of doing herself justice. That remark also applies to Monshak the second string of Sir Michael Stoute. She refused to race last time out but her three previous runs suggest she has talent. Before refusing she had won her previous two starts and her debut run saw her run second to Great Waters (beaten 3 L) since the winner of the Irish Oaks.

This is a trappy contest from a punting point of view where measurement of class will come with hindsight. Nevertheless Kailani at 8/1 represents value if the spring form can be replicated.

A day for the boys in blue.

Recommendation: Kailani 8/1 win