It’s the Craven meeting at HQ Newmarket this week; hopefully, the results won’t be as unpredictable as over the weekend at Newbury! In truth, I suppose we should expect the unexpected as they are ‘trial’ races but it was a pretty good day to be a Bookie in Berkshire on Saturday.
As well as the racing horses selling at the Tattersalls Craven Breeze Up Sale on Tuesday and Wednesday will be strutting their stuff on the Rowley Mile; if you can get down there it's well worth a visit.
The meeting gets underway at Newmarket on Tuesday with an eight-race card, the Nell Gwyn being the main event. I am having an interest in three races, I think the other five heats are best watched with such little form to go on in the maidens and the Weatherbys TBA Handicap and bet365 Handicap real head-scratchers. I have punted nice and early as the weather looks set fine and the Bookies have chalked-up.
My first bet goes in the Listed bet365 European Free Handicap at 2.25 over 7f. The form of the G.3 Horris Hill of last season was given a boost when Mohaather won the Greenham at the weekend so Azano has to be on the shortlist for this having finished second in that last October. Both races were on soft though and it will be a lot quicker at HQ this week. Shine So Bright won on debut at two and ran with credit in a number of decent races last season; fifth in the G.2 Coventry at Royal Ascot before placing in three other Group 2s. Seems to me the extra furlong should suit the grey and he has form on the quicker going so at the prices I am taking on the jolly and have the 7-2.
It’s the 1m1f Listed bet365 Feilden Stakes at 3.00. Western Australia is a warm order for this The chestnut colt won maiden at the third time of asking and slowly improved with every run at two; was not beaten far in third in the G.1 Futurity Stakes (Kick On sixth) over a mile on his final start. He was second on seasonal debut in a Listed race at Dundalk last month getting hampered when making his challenge. The colt has all the entries you would expect and looks the solid option here at 7-4. Kadar is the one that’s open to any amount of improvement but he skipped a number of Group-race engagements last back end and quickish ground would appear to be against him.
The 7f Group Three Lanwades Stud Nell Gwyn Stakes is due off at 3.35. Charlie Appleby has two entered, Nashriah who has been busy out in Dubai whilst Orchid Star has been winning minor events here in the UK on the All-Weather but both would need to improve a lot to figure here. Main Edition has arguably the best form as a two-year-old but I am not convinced she truly gets the 7f and she may set this up for one of the others. Mot Juste and Angel's Hideaway have to be considered but I am taking a chance on once raced winner Qabala improving passed them all. The Scat Daddy filly looked potentially very good when making a winning debut over track and trip on her sole two-year-old start in September showing fighting spirit to get up. That form has been nicely boosted by second, third and fourth all winning since. At 12-1 with Paddy Power she is the one for me.