Not only does this Saturday encompass the fascinating final of the Champions League but also some excellent racing to keep everyone happy! The classiest race of the day is the Group 2 Temple Stakes at Haydock and there is plenty of value of to be had with lots of high class handicaps around the country.
Rundell (2-45 Haydock) reappeared in a hot York Handicap last week and finished a very creditable second. He gave the impression that day that not only would he improve for the run but also for the return to better ground. Richard Hannon’s inmate looks well treated and though this is a competitive race he has strong claims.
Baltic Knight loos a great bet in the Silver Bowl Handicap at Haydock, 3-15. He followed up his reappearance win with a staying on third in a Listed race at Newmarket. The ground was possibly just a touch to quick that day and the forecast good ground should suit. As will the step up in trip and there looks to be plenty more to come, especially with the drop in class in his favour.
The highlight of Saturday’s racing is undoubtedly Haydock’s Group Two Temple Stakes at 3-50. There is only one horse of interest for me in this race and that is Clive Cox’s high class colt, Reckless Abandon. He won a whole host of prestigious Group One and Two races last year including the Norfolk, Middle Park and Prix Morny. Providing he has trained on he could prove to be one of the greatest British sprinters for a very long time. He should take this en route to Group One prizes later in the year.
Albert Bridge is a very interesting contender in the 3-05 at Goodwood, Ralph Beckett has said it is all about the ground for him and there has to be some “give”. His reappearance run his best forgiven and he has always appeared the sort to have a lot more to offer. Already with some good form to his name including runner-up in Leopardstown November Handicap he could be up to taking this valuable handicap.
Mark Johnston’s runners at Goodwood should always be respected and his Flashlight warrants maximum respect in the 3-35. His stamina was probably stretched over a mile and a busy schedule may have resulted in him weakening in the latter stages at Chester. Now freshened up by a break and dropped in trip he appears to hold every chance. Already with some smart form to his name over this trip including when second to Polski Max and Hillstar.
To say this is a step up in class for Moment In Time is rather an understatement, an 11 length winner of an apprentice handicap last time out is now pitched into Listed company. He was well held by Boonga Rooneta at Bath but is still lightly raced and the extra distance here could see him reverse placings with that rival. Whether he has the class is questionable but he is lightly raced and does appear to have a good engine.
Apologies for the lack of originality in York’s Spring Sprint at 2-55. I feel that Duke Of Firenze is potentially group class and this sort of mark in a handicap makes him far too tempting to resist.
Chester Selections: Mandy’s Choice 2-00, Stellar Express 2-30, Gatepost 3-10, Gabrial’s King 3-40, Grey Mirage 4-15, Greek Spirit 4-50 and Gioia Di Vita 5-20
Goodwood Selections: Afsare 2-05, Extra Noble 2-35, Albert Bridge 3-05, Flashlight 3-35, Moment In Time 4-05, Safari Mischief 4-40 and Hidden Belief 5-15
Haydock Selections: Restaurateur 2-10, Rundell 2-40, Baltic Knight 3-15, Reckless Abandon 3-50, Polar Venture 4-20, Oneladyowner 4-55, Redvers 5-30 and Enobled 6-00
York Selections: Morache Music 1-50, Bite Of The Cherry 2-20, Duke Of Firenze 2-55, Munjally 3-30, Lyric Street 4-00, Kyllachy Rise 4-35 and Sunnybridge Boy 5-10