Charlie McCann picks out the best bets for day 1 of Newmarket’s July meeting
Perfect flat racing ground (good) for the start of Newmarket’s July meeting and I hope to see Atty Persse (1.50) gain a first group success having overcome a wide draw to land the King George V Stakes at Royal Ascot last time. That 3L success was over 12f and today’s slight step up in distance should suit with James Doyle back in the plate.
The selection is 3/1 (from 11/4) with BetVictor and that looks a fair price for this son of Frankel. The colt has brought along steadily by Roger Charlton but if he is to be a realistic St Leger contender (16/1 at BetVictor) he must go close this afternoon. Raheen House is the highest rated horse in the field and his fourth in the King Edward VII Stakes is, arguably, the best form on offer but I hope to see Atty Persse improve past the Brian Meehan-trained runner.
The Coventry Stakes winner Rajasinghe has to concede 3lbs to his eleven rivals in the July Stakes but two colts who have caught my eye of late have been Hey Gaman (12/1 at BetVictor) and invincible Army (2.25) with marginal preference for the latter who is 7/1 with BetVictor.
Trained by James Tate in Newmarket the juvenile was a fluent 5L winner over C&D last month and that form has been franked by the subsequent win of fourth horse home – the runner up and third have yet to reappear. Champion jockey elect Silvestre De Sousa takes over in the saddle for the first time and the selection gets an each way vote.
Cartographer is likely to be all the rage for the 3-y-old sprint handicap but at 25/1 with BetVictor I think Ultimate Avenue (3.00) might be a shade overpriced dropping back down in trip having failed to stay over a mile on his sole start so far this term. The colt cost £340,000 as a yearling and is bred to come into his own over further, but he doesn’t look devoid of pace and Jamie Spencer keeps the mount.
Wings Of Desire is fitted with cheek-pieces for the first time having not quite had the rub of the green in the Hardwicke at Royal Ascot on his reappearance. The returning Frankie Dettori takes the ride and it would be no surprise to see the Italian make a winning comeback from his shoulder injury.
Preference, however, in the Princess Of Wales’s Stakes is for Frontiersman (3.35) who bypassed the Royal meeting having finished runner up to the excellent Highland Reel in the Coronation Cup last month. Trainer Charlie Appleby fits his 4-year-old with cheek pieces for the first time later today and at 7/4 with BetVictor he must go close if in the same mood as at Epsom.
At Doncaster James Garfield (2.10) can make it third time lucky having finished third in both starts including when looking in need over another furlong when placed in the Windsor Castle Stakes last month. The selection holds an entry in the Gp 2 Gimcrack Stakes at York next month and shouldn’t remain a maiden by the end of the afternoon.
Tribute Act (3.20) looked a filly going places when a well backed favourite at Kempton last month and she will be very hard to beat if she can transfer that improvement to turf from a 7lbs higher mark.
Beach Break (4.25) is going the right way for Newmarket handler Ralph Beckett and made all to win a Catterick maiden when last seen on the track at the beginning of June. The selection has only had five career starts to date and is open to further improvement – especially if getting an uncontested lead this afternoon.
At Newbury this evening Mr Minerals carries a 6lbs penalty for a fluent win at Kempton last week and that was a much-improved effort by Richard Hughes’s lightly-raced gelding who has won two of his three career starts, albeit both successes have come on an all-weather surface.
The vote, however, goes to another potential improver in La Rav (7.05) who ran out a facile winner at Salisbury over seven furlongs last time for Jamie Spencer and Luca Cumani and who promises to be well-served by today’s additional furlong.
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