A day earlier than usual, GG tipster Andrew Mount reveals his list of eyecatchers from the past week’s racing. Check out the horses he believes should be kept on side, along with bet365‘s new customer offer of Bet £10 Get £50 In Free Bets.
AUTUMN FESTIVAL (second, 1m handicap, Ripon, Friday, May 6)
AUTUMN FESTIVAL has been in great form since gelded and his three previous runs this spring had produced two wins and a runner-up effort. Ripon favours his forcing style but there were other pace angles in the line-up and he got into a battle for the early lead with Golden Sands. They set it up for the patiently-ridden Albegrey, with Autumn Festival having to settle for second. He can bounce back next time if facing less pace pressure.
BAROQUE STAR (fifth, 1m4f handicap, Haydock, Saturday, May 7)
They went quick up front in this 1m4f handicap run on soft ground and those ridden patiently enjoyed an advantage. BAROQUE STAR made then running, closely followed by Down To The Kid (9-1) and Togai (10-1), who dropped away to finish second last and last of the ten runners. Baroque Star stayed competitive for far longer, going down by four lengths in a 12-1 fifth on his handicap debut. He should be winning soon.
CHIPSTEAD (sixth, 6f handicap, Goodwood, Friday, April 29)
I ran out of room to include Roger Teal’s CHIPSTEAD in last week’s column but I don’t want to miss him out. He was only sixth of the nine runners but the 9-2 shot seems much happier on turning tracks. He won three times at Bath last year and could benefit from the return to a left-handed venue. His stable has also been quiet so far this year and he’s not one to give up on.
CURRAHEEN PRINCESS (ninth, 5f handicap, Naas, Saturday, May 7)
The pace held up in this 5f handicap, with the first three finishers described by the Racing Post as ‘prominent’, ‘tracked leaders’ and ‘led’. CURRAHEEN PRINCESS caught the eye with the way she was travelling from off the pace but was short of room on at least two occasions and finished full of running in mid-division. She won three times on yielding or softer ground last autumn and there are plenty more races to be won with her on this evidence.
DANEHILL KODIAC (sixth, 1m4f handicap, Ascot, Saturday, May 7)
I’ve followed the career of rookie trainer Joe Tickle with interest, as I’ve known him since his days as a stable lad with Nick Williams. Nine-year-old DANEHILL KODIAC, a rare Flat runner for his yard, ran a belter to finish sixth of 16 when 80-1 for this 1m4f handicap last Saturday. He made the running – tactics rarely successful over this trip and track – but he was still bang there two out and only just lost out on a place. This was his stable debut and there should be more to come, especially in a smaller field – his wins have come in fields of 10, 10, 9, 8 and 5 runners.
HARSWELL DUKE (third, 1m handicap, Hamilton, Sunday, May 8)
HARSWELL DUKE is by Garswood, a sire whose progeny don’t tend to reach their peak until aged four. The betting suggested that his first-four-year-old outing – at Redcar last month – would be needed after a 280-day absence but he performed with great credit to finish a 25-1 fifth of 16 from a poor high draw. He played up on the way to start, unseating his rider, when only fourth of five at Newcastle next time where the 1m2f trip might also have been a contributory factor in his defeat. Coming back to 1m at Hamilton last Sunday, everything looked set for a big run but the 15-2 shot had to wait for a clear run before staying on well to grab third. He’s entered at York this Friday.
MAJESTIC DAWN (fourth, 1m2f Group 2, Chester, Friday, May 6)
MAJESTIC DAWN went off hard enough on his reappearance and it’s easy to forgive his 17-length last of four on unsuitably quick going. The 2020 Cambridgeshire winner bolted up at Salisbury when allowed to dominate on soft ground last September and is one to bear in mind when underfoot conditions are more to his liking.
MANY A STAR (won, 6f handicap, Ascot, Friday, May 6)
Strong traveller MANY A STAR won from the front end on a track that was favouring more patient tactics (the runner-up, third and fourth all came from midfield or further back) and this form is worthy of a major uplift. His three wins have come in single-figure line-ups but he did go close in a field of 16 at York on one occasion.
MISS BELLADONNA (fourth, 5f handicap, Wolverhampton, Friday, May 6)
It paid to be on the front end in this 5f handicap, with the first three home in the van throughout. MISS BELLADONNA fared best of the closers in fourth and will be losing her maiden tag in the near future on the evidence of this run.
ZIMMERMAN (won, 1m4f, Haydock, Saturday, May 7)
ZIMMERMAN was closer to the early pace than ideal – he chased the leaders in fourth – but still powered away to justify favouritism in the same race as Baroque Star (see above). The runner-up, third and fourth all came from well off the pace and this win can be upgraded. He’d been somewhat frustrating before this first victory and the first-time cheekpieces clearly helped.
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