Edward Leahy and Dean Kilbryde from PicksfromthePaddock.co.uk team up with The Lancashire Evening Post to preview day two of Yorks Ebor meeting.
We start off day two at York with a two year olds race run over six furlongs.
The Richard Hannon trained Kool Kompany sets the standard here and has the highest official rating in the line up. He offers very little in the way of value in the betting and there are one or two concerns. He has had a much tougher campaign than most of these and this will be his seventh start this season.
That has included two trips over to Ireland and he might have less scope for improvement. He also has to shoulder a Group 2 penalty here and I think that could be enough to stop him. While he may very well win this, I would be prepared to look for more value given the above concerns.
Fast Act comes out best at the weights considering he receives seven pounds from Kool Company and is only rated five pounds lower than the favourite on official ratings. He may be value for money judging by his last run and improved ten fold on what he had shown previously when seen last time out.
Looking through the remainder and I think the jockey arrangements on the Hamdan Al Maktoum runners could be very significant. Paul Hanagan is the number one stable jockey and it is noteworthy that he chooses to ride Markaz.
Mukhmal was staying on behind Fast Act at Goodwood and was only beaten just over a length. You would have thought that he was the obvious choice for Hanagan here however Mukhmal is still a very buzzy horse though and may not see out six furlongs until he learns to settle better. That possibly made the decision for Hanagan. Saying that, Markaz must be showing plenty at home for Hanagan to choose him over the other three Maktoum runners.
One that I like at a bigger price that could certainly outrun his odds is Arthur Martinleake. I think his mark of 79 could be much improved on. While he comes here on the back of an easy win in a Yarmouth maiden it’s his previous run that catches the eye. The winner of the race that day followed up with another win and was runner up to Ivawood at Goodwood. He now has an official mark of 103 and the selection only went down by just over a length at level weights. It is a race that has worked out well enough too and has thrown up a few winners.
Arthur Martinleake (E/W)
The second race that we cover today is the Group 2 Lowther Stakes for fillies and as with the first contest is also over six furlongs.
I think it is hard to get away from the Richard Hannon trained Tiggy Wiggy. She renews rivalry with Anthem Alexander who beat her in the Queen Mary, at Royal Ascot. She only went down by a neck that day but Anthem Alexander has to shoulder a penalty in todays contest. I think that could be enough to swing things in Tiggy Wiggy’s favour and whilst Tiggy Wiggy has done all her running over five furlongs, her pedigree and running style would suggest that six furlongs should pose no problems.
Cursory Glance is the one who could prove to be the biggest danger to Tiggy Wiggy. She was an impressive winner at Ascot last time out with Patience Alexander two lengths in arrears.
I think the winner will come from one of the three at the head of the market, but preference is for Tiggy Wiggy.
Tiggy Wiggy (WIN)
Next up we revert to handicap company.
While last years renewal went the way of a six year old, the previous twelve renewals went to either a three or four year old. For that reason it is probably best to concentrate on the more unexposed runners in the line up, for win purposes anyway.
Russian Realm heads what is a very open betting heat. He has gone off favourite on his last two starts and was beaten on both occasions. While neither run was bad, he did look held and runs off the same mark here today. He has a win on good to firm ground but I think his best form to date has come on ground with a bit of cut. He may win this, but I would be prepared to look elsewhere.
I think Parbold is probably the most interesting runner in this as he looks one of the more unexposed runners in the line up. It’ll only be his second run in a handicap as he has done nearly all his running in pattern company. His last run in a handicap saw him finish fifth off a mark of 111. He was only beaten just over a length that day so should be capable of being competitive off a handicap mark of 105. Some of his two year old form is very good, most noteworthy being a one and three quarter length third to Toormore and he represents decent each way value at around 12/1.
Another that catches the eye, mainly due to jockey bookings and also at decent odds is Santefisio. The horse has a solid run in the Buckingham Palace Stakes that should see him competitive and if able to reproduce that sort of fom could run well.
The Yorkshire Oaks is our fourth race of the day, where Taghrooda looks to defend her unbeaten record and record a fifth straight victory. In her last race, The King George, the Sea The Stars filly breezed past Telescope and Mukhadram in the final furlong, emerging an impressive three length winner. In her penultimate race, The Investec Oaks, she was just as impressive, beating Tarfasha by almost four lengths. The market suggests that this is a one-horse race, and truth be told there doesn’t look to be a serious danger to Taghrooda providing she arrives in the same form as in the victories detailed above. However, just in case Taghrooda performs below expectation, there are others to consider.
Tasaday arrives on the back of a victory here at York, in what was her first attempt at racing in the UK after victories at Deauville and Meydan in the last twelve months. Venus De Milo and Talent are proven over todays’ distance, with Venus De Milo boasting a 60% win rate over todays’ trip. Furthermore, Venus De Milo has an impressive record of four wins and three seconds from nine career starts, so could be the one to chase Taghrooda home.
Dark Crusader is the only one in the field with a previous win at York to her name, however has been largely disappointing this season. Her last race showed some improvement when finishing second, although she was still three lengths behind the winner. In contrast, Arabian Comet has been in great form recently with three wins from her last five races. A close second to Missunited at Goodwood in her latest start, she finished ahead of the re-opposing Waila and Stella Bellissima. Noble Protector must also be respected after a convincing five length victory in her last start at Newmarket in July.
However, my selection for this race is Starlet. Starlet has only made two career starts, finishing second to Carla Bianca (over ten furlongs) in her first start then running out an impressive five length victor, over todays’ race distance, last time out. The step up in trip clearly suited and the margin of victory could have been even bigger, with Jockey Pat Smullen easing down close to home. With more improvement expected as experience grows, Starlet could prove to be a star of the future but looks sure to be in with a chance today.
The final race of the day sees twenty scheduled to go to post, and is a real head scratcher with many having decent claims.
Jamesbo’s Girl arrives on the back of two recent wins, while Ticking Katie has course and distance form having won here on her penultimate start.
Meeting Waters has placed in five from seven races on turf, although only managed one win from five attempts over todays distance.
Wedding Ring is aher that would have to be considered on her best form but was over four lengths behind Bragging last time out and has proved frustrating since returning from Meydan.The afformentioned Bragging was a very impressive winner of her last race, moving well clear of her rivals in the final furlong and would have to be considered today with ground and trip to suit.
Sparkle Factor is another to note, with a 50% strike rate over todays’ distance. She had to dig deep on her penultimate start but showed great determination to keep her head in front and perhaps found eight furlongs just too far last time out when finishing fifth after leading and looking strong with one furlong left to go.
Sparkle Factor (E/W)
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