After the usually quiet Thursday, the three day Cambridgeshire meeting gets going on Friday with the Group 1 Middle Park (for 2yo colts; 3:05) and Group 1 Cheveley Park (for 2yo fillies; 2:30) both over 6f.


The BANKER BET OF THE MEETING goes in the Middle Park and it’s TEMPLE MEADS who looked one to follow ever since his impressive debut at Newmarket in May.  He appeared then always likely to be suited by easy ground yet he won a Group 2 on last on good to firm and surely there’s plenty to come now the ground has come in his favour.


In the Cheveley Park, Hooray, the likely favourite, has already underperformed on softish ground and last won a muddling Lowther so must be the LAY OF THE MEETING. The filly most likely to succeed here is MARGOT DID whose rather exposed profile is misleading as she has been unlucky in running the last twice (including when 3/4l second to Hooray in the Lowther and deserves to take home one of these.



The Group 1 Sun Chariot Stakes (3:00 p.m. GMT) appears competitive on paper but appearances are deceiving.  Strawberrydaiquiri has always looked to me to be begging for a step up in trip; Spacious has only won 2 from 14 since her 2yo days and none for over a year (7 starts); and last year’s winner Sahpressa, the most likely of the older generation to triumph, produced her career best in that race on her only start on good to firm and has flopped on her only start on soft.

So, I confidently expect the youngsters to dominate and that means we must choose between Seta and MUSIC SHOW with the latter the firm choice and the former (still in the green and developing category) likely to be undone by getting too involved in the early pace.  MUSIC SHOW (DAY’S BANKER BET) has established herself as the top 3yo filly in Europe and is confidently expected to confirm that rating here.


The Cambridgeshire is suddenly wide open after the draw as my top two ante-post namely Start Right and Mirrored drew alongside each other in 9 and 10 respectively.  That is not good as high numbers are almost sure to hold sway here.  Nevertheless, at the likely prices, Mirrored, who has been begging for just this sort of race all year and who has dropped 10 pounds in the ratings since 1 1/2l 4th to Mutamaashi over 10f at Chester last September and 7 pounds since 1 1/4l 3rd of 16 to Roman Republic at Goodwood in July 2009, must be a value each way flutter for those of you wanting to support one at decent odds.  There’s no value at all in backing Start Right at current odds as he’s suspect over this stiff 9f and will be encountering soft ground for the very first time.  He MUST be opposed.  It should also be noted that Mirrored has never run on softer than good but he is out of a Saddler’s Wells mare and at a much more attractive price.

But, we must look at the high drawn younger entrants for the now trite group-horse-in-a-handicap type upon which to have a significant bet.  The key to this stiff 9f test is that the winner will usually prove to be a horse effective over 10f.   Circumvent easily makes the short list (drawn 35 of 35) winning over 10f at Newmarket on unsuitably fast ground when last in a Handicap.  Four pounds extra on Saturday will mean nothing to this scopey individual who has twice since raced in Group company before finishing 1 1/4l 3rd of 7 to Vesuve in a competitive Ayr listed race on last again over 10f.  Now that he gets his ground again, he’ll prove very, very hard to beat.

Capponi (drawn 31) is another of the younger generation but his style of running (up with the pace) and suspect stamina will not suit this searching test.  The favourite Nationalism is most vulnerable especially at the odds on offer from the number 3 hole and with his relative inexperience and so must be opposed although his form is right up there with the best of them.

Emirates Dream, the ride of Frankie Dettori (drawn 29) is a most intriguing entry having shown his best form on last after only 3 runs in Britain when he encountered the softest ground of his U.K. career.  Last year he was 1 ½ lengths 3rd to Behkabad (4th French Derby; subsequently won Group 1 Grand Prix De Paris and Group 2 Prix Neil both at Longchamp and is the ante-post favourite for the Arc) over a mile in the Group 3 Prix De Chenes in the manner of a horse sure to get 10f as a 3yo.  Rated a mere 97 for this and 14/1 on most ante-post lists, he’s most tempting.

Absinthe (drawn 28) is a very lightly-raced 4yo with a progressive profile who won his last two and showing marked improvement on last encountering soft ground for the very first time at Windsor over 10f.  He was nothing short of awesome at Windsor and a 9lb rise won’t trouble him.  He’s another that’s very, very dangerous and who’ll have the race run to suit.  However, it’s important to note that he has run almost exclusively on turning tracks and this stiff straight course might just find him out.  But he cannot be safely ignored.

Finally, this rather long short list is completed by Taqleed (drawn 26) who’s run only 3 lifetime races (won both races as a 3yo this year) and who’s another to show marked improvement when encountering softish ground for the first time on last over 10f at Newmarket.  He’s inexperienced and will need even more improvement to win this so is bypassed for now but remains one to note.

The three to concentrate on are Circumvent, Emirates Dream and Absinthe and the confident vote goes to CIRCUMVENT (NAP OF THE MEETING) who showed not only a return to form on last but a vital change of pace held up for the first time.  This will be perfect for him whilst there is still a stamina query surrounding Emirates Dream and so Absinthe is nominated as the main danger.





Good Luck!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: