Some cracking racing to enjoy this Saturday the length and breadth of the country; I am concentrating on Newmarket and Newbury in my search for winners and I will start at HQ Newmarket.
Old Persian should prove too good for his two rivals in the Listed Fairway Stakes at 2.05 over at HQ and is duly a shade odds-on at 4-6. He made a nice return to the track last month when winning a Newmarket handicap off a mark of 94. Followed that effort up running well when runner-up to unbeaten stablemate Key Victory, a horse I know well having tipped him that day, in the Listed Havana Gold Newmarket Stakes last time.
The Listed King Charles II Stakes at 2.45 can also go to the Charlie Appleby yard in the shape of his Aurum. The colt made a pleasing winning debut over track and trip here last month and with the expected improvement should have too much in his locker for the obvious danger Purser for the John Gosden yard. I snaffled the 2-1 early doors.
And off cross country we go to Newbury.
Crystal Ocean looks as close to a certainty as you can get in this game in the Group Three Al Rayyan Stakes at 2.25 but is priced accordingly and is another odds-on at 8-13 but you wouldn’t catch me offering Evens. Won on his seasonal return in the 1m2f G.3 Gordon Richards Stakes (tipped on here) and stepping back up to 1m4f fine as his campaign builds to bigger targets in the summer.
The Group One Al Shaqab Lockinge Stakes at Newbury due off 3.40 over the mile at looks a really classy field. Dropping down in trip Triple G Dirty Dozen member Rhododendron heads a party of four from the Aidan O’Brien stable including Lancaster Bomber. As a filly she gets a bit of weight and must have a chance, you certainly always get a run for your money with her. She is my one of my favourite horses in training and naturally my punt at 100-30. William Haggas trained Addeybb steps up to the highest level off the back of wins already this season in the Lincoln and G.2 Bet365 Mile and is feared. Henry Candy’s Limato, who was fourth in 2016 has another try at eight furlongs and David Simcock’s Lightning Spear is back again after being runner-up 12 months ago. Dutch Connection from Charlie Hills’ yard will relish the underfoot conditions whilst David O’Meara will saddle Suedois who went well in the G.1 Breeders Cup Mile when last seen. The improving Zabeel Prince comes to the top table for the first time whilst Andrew Balding will be saddling the solid Beat The Bank. Sit back and enjoy.
At 4.50 it’s the Listed Haras De Bouquetot Fillies' Trial Stakes over 1m2f. Crystal Hope won well at Sandown over the trip last month and second placed Give And Take came out and won the G.3 Musidora Stakes at York this week giving the form a very solid look. The form of her one run at two, when she was sixth, is far from shabby either with four other winners coming from the race including Hadith who won a Listed heat last backend. The chestnut can be expected to improve bundles yet having only run twice and is a strong fancy for me at the early 11-8.
At the prices, you may want to try a Canadian which for a pound would pay £550 odd if they all get the job done.