Week Four of the free preview of Saturday’s Channel Four Racing, and we’re coming off the back of the best week yet. The first week we turned a profit, it was a small loss in the second week, but last week we had three winners in the shape of Poet’s Prize at 7/1, Alice Springs at a paltry 2/5 and Buckstay at 9/2 in the last race of the day. So, totting it all up, we ended up turning a profit of 5.9 units, which takes us up to +9.88 units, which I’m extremely happy with, given that it’s been mostly flat racing. Over 3 units profit a week for some free horse racing tips? Not to be sniffed at, really.
Last week, Golden Horn proved everyone including myself wrong to win the Arc at Longchamp, with absolutely everything and everyone against him. The ground didn’t bother him, Treve couldn’t get near and, all-in-all, Golden Horn answered any doubts that might have been raised over him. So I’ll eat humble pie on that one.
Now, let’s look Saturday’s Channel Four Racing and it’s all about York and Newmarket, with the Cesarewitch being the highlight of the day’s racing. Personally, I’m not a fan of the race, but you do tend to get some big prices winning, so if you can pinpoint the winner, it’s always a nice lift.
A 1 mile handicap for three year-olds to start the day at York, and we have 13 runners delclared.
Azraff was quite a smart two-year-old, but is finding things tough this year. He’s at the top of the handicap and doesn’t look weighted to win it, although it might not be the toughest race in the world to win.
Preference here is for Arthenus, who has been placed in his last five races, won the last two and looks well handicapped. His win last time out at Ascot looks good, and is the most recent form to beat.
We do have some unpexposed runners in the field, but their wins don’t look to have the class or be as impressive as that of Arthenus, so I’ve got to give the nod to the James Fanshawe runner.
This is a fillies’ nursery over 7 furlongs and it looks a bit of a tricky one, as we’ve got a lot of runners that have good form, at least on paper.
Dawaa sets the standard here, but is burdened with 9 stone 7lbs, while the rest of the field are all carrying 8 stone 12 or less. Not ideal for a two-year-old, to be fair.
Make Fast, owned by the Queen, has won her only race, which is always a good sign, but it wasn’t a great race and the form isn’t there from that race.
I do like the look of Mise en Rose, as Godolphin are flying right now, and their two-year-olds look in good health. The form, on paper, of her last run wasn’t great, but that was over an extra furlong. A drop back in trip should suit, and with a stable in form, we can’t look past Mise en Rose.
A small field for this 1 mile 2 furlong handicap, but it looks a very competitive affair.
Memorial Day(NAP) for Godolphin was a late bloomer, having one run on the all-weather at the end of last year for his racecourse debut, but has since come out this year and had 5 runs, with 2 wins and 3 seconds. He’s a course and distance winner this year, which I think is very important at Newmarket – not all horses can handle the course. Plus, as I mentioned in earlier in the article, Godolphin are firing on all cylinders, so it would be silly to back against them when they’re bringing their quality handicappers out.
The best of the rest could be course and distance winner Field of Fame, although the form lines from previous runs doesn’t hold up too well under scrutiny. Off the same weight as Memorial Day, it’s hard to see how he finishes in front of our selection.
The Autumn Stakes is run over 1 mile and is for two-year-olds. This Group 3 has a small field declared, but it looks another very competitive race and it’ll take something special to win it.
A close third in a competitive Group 2 for Beacon Rock is the choice form here, taking a step down in class. Aiden O’Brien’s colt has a win under his belt already and will be tough to beat.
For Gifted Master, he’s had 3 of his 5 runs at Newmarket and his record reads 1st, 2nd, 1st, notably finishing behind the classy Burantino. He might be a little exposed, but the form reads well, and his win last week was very, very easy. However, only a week’s rest might not be enough in such a high-class race.
The form of Ibn Malik (NB) reads exceptionally well, with two seconds in Group 2s and a win on this course, which is hugely important. The form of his first Group 2 run is working out really well, with the winner, Galileo Gold, going well to finish third in the Group 1 Grand Criterion. Ibn Malik got within a length of that very classy sort, so this drop in class should prove decisive and he’s taken to beat Beacon Rock into second place.
The renewal of the Rockingham looks incredibly interesting, and this 6 furlong dash has a few noteworthy contenders.
Dhahmann has had two runs, one on the all-weather and one on the turf and won both. His first run was at Nottingham back in May, and he beat the very impressive Ajaya who has gone on to race at the highest level this year. The one worry is the length of time he’s been out.
Gracious John has a form line through last week’s winner Poet’s Prize. Gracious John beat Poet’s Prize two races ago, and it was a comfortable enough win. Given that Poet’s Prize won a competitive race last week, he has to be in with a chance. He’s won at York before, too, so the track won’t hold any problems for him.
Donjuan Triumphant won a big nursery at Ayr last time out, beating 17 other runners comfortably. However, one thing to note is that he’s found Receeding Waves too go on two occasions, and Receeding Waves was beaten by Poet’s Prize last week, so on that form line, Donjuan Triumphant doesn’t look likely of finishing ahead of Gracious John. Now, that’s not always how it works, but it helps.
The nod here goes to Dhahmann, marginally, over Gracious John. That form line with Ajaya, if it holds up, should be more than enough to seal the race. The long lay-off won’t hurt, as he won his first ever racecourse appearance.
The Group 1 Dewhurst is perhaps the most exciting race of the day because it’s going to give us pointers for next season’s top three-year-olds, hopefully. It’s only a small field, with 7 runners set to go to post.
The money has been coming for Air Force Blue since Minding comfortably won the Fillies’ Mile, with everyone thinking that Aiden O’Brien’s two-year-olds are the ones to beat. And that could be the case with the impressive Air Force Blue, whose only defeat came at the hands of Buratino. We know how well Buratino has been going, so there’s no shame in that.
Emotionless is Godolphin’s runner, who has won his only two starts to date, beating Ibn Malik last time out in a Group 2 in what became a procession. They think very highly of emotionless, and, again, their runners are going well, so you could get some value about this runner if the money keeps on coming for Air Force Blue.
Sanus Per Aquam and Tashweeq both set a good standard, with the former going well in Group 3s, while the latter has won in Listed company. However, it looks a bit of a step up against two of the best two-year-olds in training, which is why we have to rule them out.
On paper, it’s a straight shootout between Air Force Blue and Emotionless. I think Emotionless has just a bit more to give and we could be seeing the market leader for the 2,000 Guineas if he bolts up here.
A 20-runner 6 furlong sprint handicap, what could possibly go wrong? It’s a trappy field, and finding the winner is tough. That being said, we should get some value if we can find it.
George Bowen ran a big race in second in the Ayr Gold Cup, however the winner, Tatlisu, didn’t frank that form last week, finishing near the back of the field in the Challenge Cup at Ascot. So although we like both runners, there are a few that do seem classier.
Golden Steps finished a couple of lengths back from Buckstay in the Ayr Gold Cup last time out, and with Buckstay winning well last week, it’s that line of form we need to be looking at when it comes to the sprints. He won the time before last, so he knows how to get his nose in front. Forgive him his run in the Ayr Gold Cup, where he wasn’t too disgraced, and he is the choice. Poyle Vinnie, the runner-up in that race is an obvious threat, but is now weighted accordingly, carrying 2lb more than our selection, while they ran off equal weights at Ayr.
Moonraker is also an interesting runner, having run in Group races prior to this. If something clicks, he could be in the frame for a place.
The Cesarewitch. Stick a pin in the list to find the winner of this 34-runner 2 mile 2 furlong race.
Low Key won the Cesarewitch Trial last time out and is coming into this off a weight near the bottom of the handicap, so has to be respected.
Oriental Fox (each-way) has been running well in Group company and won’t mind the trip at all, enjoying the slogs on soft ground in France. He’s carrying top weight, but class should out here, and Oriental Fox is, on paper, the classiest horse in the race, winning the Queen Alexandra over 2m 6 furlongs at Ascot. He also won the Ceserewitch Trial at Newmarket two years ago, before finishing sixth that year.
Quick Jack, a dual-flat and hurdles runner, also catches the eye, and there could be a coup brewing here. A classy sort, third in this year’s County Hurdle, he has to be respected, but he’ll be going off near the head of the market, and we want a bit of value from this race.
However, it’s a bit of a crap shoot, with two big price winners in the last three years, so don’t be surprised if we get a shock bolting past the finish post at a fancy price.