There will be plenty of hungover and hanging heads after last night's result in the football, but Newmarket's July Festival is the perfect conduit to restore the summer vibes and we'll kick things off with 5 Dark Horses at nice prices, who might just surprise a few today...
Newmarket - 1.50 - GLOBAL GIANT Best Price: 25/1
Ed Dunlop’s charge is the outsider of the field here and has a quirky line of 5-5-5 form figures coming into this tough test. He went off at 100/1 in the Group 3 Hampton Court Stakes last time out, but caught the in-running and this step up to 1m5f is also an interesting move, considering there was no guarantee he’d even stay 1m2f at Ascot. He’s clocked one or two very good speed figures and might just outrun his odds, but is certainly a Dark Horse under the evergreen Gerald Mosse.
Newmarket - 2.25 - NORTH WIND Best Price: 50/1
Aidan O'Brien’s second string runner is an unconsidered 50/1 chance in places today and may be set for pacemaking duties once again behind Van Beethoven, but equally he did ran to an RPR of 95 & Topspeed of 76 at the Curragh, which was a career best by the thick end of 20lbs. Who knows, he could well be improving now himself. If that’s the case, he may not be as far away at the finish as his position in the market suggests. It’s a shot in the dark, but hey, check the title!
Newmarket - 3.00 - FOXTROT LADY Best Price: 8/1
This Foxwedge filly is a half-sister to brilliant, Steward’s Cup winning 3yo Dancing Star and Foxtrot Lady is very much in a similar mould. She ran another cracker at York to be 5th in a hot race after her pair of wins earlier on in the summer and Dancing Star won this race a couple of years ago on route to Goodwood. Andrew Balding’s charge is following in the same footsteps and it will be very interesting to see if she can win this and earn her place in the Steward’s Cup next month. A filly in a sea of colts and geldings for this £100,000 handicap, Foxtrot Lady is the dark horse here for me, and the one they all have to beat.
Newmarket - 3.35 - MUNTHAHAA Best Price: 10/1
This John Gosden trained son of Dansili hasn’t won a race since April of 2017, but despite a couple of indifferent efforts in five starts since, he does remain on a generally upward curve. Others have more appeal on bare form, but Muntahaa produced a career best effort when 3rd behind Monarch’s Glen at Royal Ascot and a return to 1m4f could see the horse ran a very big race at a double figure price.
Newmarket - 4.45 - GLENDEVON Best Price: 18/1
Sportsbook prices for this interesting Richard Hughes trained runner range from 8/1 to 18/1, so the bookies aren’t sure what to make of him. Two things are for sure, this horse just looks like a nice one and he is very highly regarded, so despite not imposing himself on the track yet, he is very much of interest today. Ryan Moore booked to ride reads well and word is, he thinks Glendevon will appreciate the ground today and the jockey is quietly confident of a solid run.
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