Jack Milner of BetVictor.com reflects on the weekend and tips ip a few for today.
Wings of Eagles swooped late and fast under Padraig Beggy to win a pulsating renewal of The Derby, springing a 40/1 shock in the mile and a half classic at Epsom. The colt showed glimpses of his old man, winning with a late burst reminiscent of his sire Pour Moi (2011 Derby winner) and is 14/1 first show with BetVictor for the Arc at Chantilly in the autumn.
Ryan Moore suffered a mixed weekend, tasting Group 1 success aboard globetrotter Highland Reel but second in both classics with Rhododendron unable to reel-in John Gosden’s Enable in The Oaks. Frankie Dettori got the fractions spot-on aboard the Juddmonte home-bred and she looks a seriously class filly that is likely to taste further success at the top level this summer.
Arc prices from BetVictor
Highland Reel 12/1
Wings of Eagles 14/1
Epsom’s good weather saw plenty of people leave the track Steaming (6.40) and Ralph Beckett’s gelding should shed the maiden tag at the fourth attempt this evening at Windsor. The son of Rail Link was a beaten favourite last time out at Thirsk when bumping into a useful horse for Godolphin and should be able to go one better under Frank Berry.
Berry partners Dougan in the feature, who continues to frustrate on turf and remains winless in 8 starts away from his beloved all-weather. He is best watched in the 6f Handicap and preference lies instead with David Simcock’s Jordan Sport (7.40) under Jamie Spencer. The selection has been a revelation since joining Trilium Place, winning two of his last three starts, and should appreciate the step back up in trip.
In the finale, I’m hopeful of Suspect Package (8.40) going close for the in-form yard of James Fanshawe. After a slow start to the spring ‘The Skeleton’ has been a revelation the past fortnight, with 4 winners and a further 7 places from the yard’s last 15 runners. He looked in need of the run on last month’s seasonal debut at Nottingham and remains unexposed after just 5 career starts.
Mark Johnston is another flying at the minute, and should go close with Love Oasis (6.25) up at Ayr. The filly was popular in the market last week at Hamilton, and narrowly failed to justify support when second in a competitive 6f Handicap under Joe Fanning. She has improved on both starts this term and should be there or thereabouts from an unrevised mark.
Michael Dods’ Aprovado (7.25) is another who is consistently in the frame and gets the nod to get his head in front under 5lb apprentice Callum Rodriguez in the feature 5f Handicap. Since returning from a break the speedster won a 6f Handicap at Newcastle and has placed in 3 of his other 4 starts and should give another bold bid from the plumb draw in stall three.
There’s a good card this afternoon at Leicester where Alifax will be taken to follow the lofty heights hit by similar Yorkshire namesake Arrogate when making his debut for Jamie Osbourne in the opening 6f Maiden. All joking aside, he boasts a nice pedigree but so does William Haggas’ Dream of Delphi (2.20) who should be well up to landing, what looks on paper, a weak looking maiden.
Stablemate Hakeem could be chucked-in on his handicap debut from an opening mark of 77 however, I’m willing to give Roger Charlton’s Comrade Conrad (3.20) another chance after his seasonal debut at Windsor. The well-bred colt managed to finish fifth despite almost coming down on the bend, the card was later abandoned due to safety concerns, and he must go close under apprentice pilot Kieran Shoemark – who looks increasingly good value for his 3lb claim.
The forecast good-to-soft ground should help Bletchley (4.55) who can land the feature 7f Conditions Stakes sporting a first-time hood. The Qatar Racing-owned filly struggled in group company last term but based on her runner-up effort at Royal Ascot is worth a chance down in grade.
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