Hermosa was a brilliant winner of the Irish 1,000 Guineas at the Curragh on Sunday and connections must be delighted they decided to bypass Friday’s Oaks in favour of a crack at the Guineas’ double.
The filly looks sure to get at least 10f going forward and she is 10/1 with BetVictor for the Eclipse Stakes at Sandown in July. Note her next target was reported to be the French Oaks over 10f at Chantilly on June 16th rather than the Coronation Stakes at Royal Ascot.
Connections of both Chester Vase winner Sir Dragonet (3/1f with BetVictor) and Dante Stakes winner Telecaster (6/1 at BetVictor) were yesterday supplemented for the Derby at Epsom on Saturday at a cost of £75,000 as 15 colts were entered for the premier Classic of the season. Aidan O’Brien has 8 of the entries and he is likely to run at least six at the weekend.
Hamish (4.10) is taken to go one better at Redcar this afternoon than when second at Thirsk at debut over a mile. That form has been franked by the winner – Munhamek – who finished second in the valuable mile handicap at Haydock at the weekend from a mark in the mid-80s. The selection will appreciate today’s additional quarter-mile on breeding, has a good draw in stall one and represents William Haggas’ who trained the dam Tweed to win two of her three career starts.
Victoriano (3.20) was given plenty to do when staying on fourth over today’s C&D earlier in the month and I expect jockey Edward Greatrex to race more prominently this afternoon. Archie Watson’s string remain in good form and Victoriano looks a possible improver now that connections are aware their inmate appreciates a decent test.
I hope Oisin Murphy has a good day by the seaside at Brighton where Lonicera (2.00) can land the opener for Henry Candy. The selection pulled hard on her first start since December when runner up over a mile at Chepstow earlier in the month and the hope is that this slight drop back in trip will suit.
Murphy also rides Current Option (3.00) who would be receiving 2lbs from likely favourite Franz Kafka if this were a handicap, but I thought he, too, pulled his chance away at Epsom on his reappearance when he was backed into favouritism but faded into third. He ought to be more amenable to restraint with that run under his belt and he is taken to improve past the Gosden runner.
The filly Peace Prevails (4.00) is a more speculative selection although I felt the filly looked to be coming to hand when fourth over a mile on polytrack last time. The each way selection was beaten less than a length when third over C&D here from a 14lbs higher mark in September and a repeat of that run would make her very hard to beat.
The most valuable card of the day is at Balinrobe where there are a couple of E50,000 handicaps including the Mayo National where I hope to see a big run from the mare Mrs Lovett (8.00). The selection is 10lbs better off for the three-quarters of a length she was behind Peregrine Run at Killarney earlier in the month when she certainly wasn’t knocked about. Trainer Gordon Elliot is doubly-represented this evening in a wide-open contest, but the mare certainly caught the eye in what was a Grade 3 contest last time and carries just 10st 2lbs.
There is a fascinating Bumper to end the card with several the top yards represented including that of Joseph O’Brien who saddles Risk Factor (8.30). The selection is a half-brother to a couple of winners in this sphere. The beautifully bred Blazing Emily looks the main danger in what promises to be a most informative contest.
In the last at Southwell this evening I would be disappointed if Basildon (8.40) didn’t go very close having showed an aptitude for fibresand when second here over an inadequate mile here earlier in the month. The selection won a Newcastle Bumper (2m) back in January and this step up to 12f on his handicap debut looks the key.