By News Team
Last Updated: 6th August 2021
It’s a busy Saturday with all eyes on the Shergar Cup, but there could be a couple here that might just find conditions to their liking.
Nick Luck has run his eye over nine races from Ascot, Haydock, and Newmarket.
STONE OF DESTINY simply must run well in the Shergar Cup opener (12.50). Like so many of the stable’s horses, he seems to have progressed of late, and has run three fine races (including here in the King’s Stand) in much tougher company. He won’t mind if there’s any rain, and that just gives him the edge over King of Stars at 11/2.
HASANABAD is a play at a price in the stayers’ race (1.25). He’s always had a good chunk of ability, but has often been a bit keen. A spell over jumps seems to have calmed him, however, and he’s well worth a try at this trip on the flat judged on his eye-catching run at Chester last time. He is undoubtedly well treated if he can put it all together at 11/1.
HMS PRESIDENT is wheeling back quickly (2.00) after an excellent second in the Racing League on Thursday night, but he’ll be going up in the handicap after this, so is well in off his current mark. The difference there was clearly the application of cheekpieces and this step up to twelve furlongs looks as though it should bring about further progress at 15/2.
DASHING ROGER gets the nod in the mile (2.35). From a yard that is having a really good season, this horse has run two fine races lately, following up his Sandown win with an even better run to be third at Salisbury to the smart Johan. From stall three on the round mile, he looks poised at 5/1 to get the perfect set-up here towards the head of affairs under Cieren Fallon, whose judgement of pace this season has been exemplary.
STAR CALIBER can take the ‘Classic’ (3.10). There are a few potential non-stayers here in a race that is likely to be well-run, but the selection is definitely not one of them, as he drops back from two miles. I quite like that angle, however, as he travelled like a faster horse last time over two miles, and it may be that he is simply sharpening up with racing. Either way at 8/1, he remains progressive, and I like James Doyle taking over in the saddle.
DREAM COMPOSER boasts the best credentials to give French rider Mickaelle Michel a winner in the last (3.45). Although he may want a drop of rain to see him at his best, anything on the easy side of good is fine and I’m keen on this return to six furlongs at 4/1 after his excellent run in a better race here last time behind Significantly.
A BOY NAMED IVY could spring a bit of a surprise in a slightly thin race at Haydock (2.25). The front of the market looks really shaky, with Fantastic Fox bombing on his only try on softish ground, Dubai Mirage hanging fire under pressure last time, and the long absent Royal Mews looking horrid when last seen and connections reaching straightaway for the headgear. The selection is limited enough at 11/4, but has lots of decent form with cut in the ground, is fairly treated and is getting lumps of weight from the principals.
EXTRA ELUSIVE is a bit of value (15/2) to give the exciting Real World a fright in a very smart looking edition of the Rose of Lancaster at Haydock (4.10). He came back with a nice run off his trip to Saudi Arabia, and can be forgiven his Brigadier Gerard flop as he got hooked up in a duel with Sangarius that cost them both. Rain will be no inconvenience, the stable is going much better now and he showed real flair when winning this race last year.
SUNSTRIKE is fancied to reverse Sandown form with Wild Beauty in the Sweet Solera at Newmarket (2.50). Both fillies were demolished behind the wildly impressive Inspiral in the Star Stakes last time, but the selection made the most taking impression behind the winner, only to be ground down by today’s favourite. This sharper seven furlongs may enable her to gain revenge at 5/1.