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Sonnyboyliston team waiting on next move

Ebor winner Sonnyboyliston has come out of his York exertions well, but where he runs next is still to be decided.

The plan had been to take him to Australia for the Melbourne Cup, but trainer Johnny Murtagh mooted a possible tilt at the Irish St Leger on September 12 in the immediate aftermath of Saturday’s race.

“He’s in good shape. He came out of it well,” said Murtagh, who was winning the Ebor for a second time after Mutual Regard in 2014.

“I spoke to the owners the other day. They’re getting together, and they’re going to make a plan of attack.

“But he’s got home in one piece. He’s good – he’s a little bit tired, as you would imagine.

“But I put him out in the paddock this morning, (and) he seems pretty happy with himself.

“We’re just waiting with the boys to see what they think. I told them what I thought.”

Sonnyboyliston grabs Ebor verdict for Murtagh

Sonnyboyliston hung on to give trainer Johnny Murtagh a second victory in the Sky Bet Ebor at York.

The handler sent out Mutual Regard to win the handicap feature back in 2014, and Sonnyboyliston (10-1) fended off Quickthorn to once again take the prize back to County Kildare.

Jockey Ben Coen bided his time through the early stages, sitting in mid division while Blue Cup and Humanitarian raced a couple of lengths clear at the head of affairs.

It looked as though Blue Cup had a handy advantage at the top of the straight, but he quickly dropped away, leaving Quickthorn in front.

However, Coen was poised to challenge down the middle of the track – and he edged in front in the final furlong, with 16-1 shot Quickthorn giving his all but eventually falling just short in a photo.

Alounak kept on for third, with Shanroe fourth. Favourites Ilaraab and Mt Leinster both finished down the field in heavy rain on the Knavesmire.

Johnny Murtagh celebrates with the Ebor trophy
Johnny Murtagh celebrates with the Ebor trophy (Nigel French/PA)

Murtagh said: “It’s all the hard work everybody does at home. It’s me knowing the kind of horse it takes to win these races, like when I was riding in them.

“I’m going back to my experience as a jockey. That’s the kind of horse we need for this track or that race.

“The last time he ran here he ran very well, and I liked the way he came home. He came on for that run, and that gave us confidence.

“He’s out of a good staying mare. Fair play to Ben. He was good.”

Sonnyboyliston is entered in the Comer Group International Irish St Leger at the Curragh on September 12, while Murtagh also nominated him for the Melbourne Cup at Flemington on November 2.

An Australian trip has not been ruled out, but Murtagh’s sights are set on the Curragh for now.

He said: “I have him in the Irish St Leger, and we’ll have to think about that first now before we consider Australia.

“Last year when he won (on) Irish Champions weekend over a mile and a quarter, I always thought when he stepped up in distance he’d get better.

Sonnyboyliston and connections at York
Sonnyboyliston and connections at York (Nigel French/PA)

“At the start of the year I thought he might end up in the Ebor. It doesn’t always work out like that, but today it did – by a head.

“He is a pretty good stayer. He has to improve a lot for the Irish St Leger – but he’s probably going to get a hike for that. It’s the next logical step.

“There have been a lot of people looking at him before today, and I’m sure they will be on again after today, but my plan is to go for the Irish St Leger.”

Euchen Glen chasing more York riches

Jim Goldie is confident the burden of top-weight will not prevent Euchen Glen from putting up a bold bid in the Sky Bet Ebor at York.

A former winner of the John Smith’s Cup on the Knavesmire, the popular veteran returns to the track having enjoyed another tremendous campaign – landing a pair of big-race victories at Sandown with wins in the Brigadier Gerard and Gala Stakes.

The eight-year-old failed to fire in a soft ground Rose of Lancaster Stakes at Haydock a fortnight ago, but while he must carry 10st 2lb and will break from stall one in Saturday’s £500,000 feature, Goldie feels it would be dangerous to leave him out of calculations.

“He’s in grand order,” said the Scottish trainer.

“It’s a mighty task carrying that weight, but Red Rum carried 12st in the Grand National, so big weights can be carried.

“He’s won a John Smith’s Cup, so he obviously acts at York. Some might say being drawn one is a negative, but we’ll be going the shortest road. I would rather be one than 22, anyway.

“We’ve got a good jockey (Paul Mulrennan) who knows him well so it will be interesting.”

Proud Newmarket-based Yorkshireman William Haggas declared four runners in a bid to win the county’s most prestigious handicap for the first time.

Dual course and distance winner Hamish is the trainer’s shortest-priced runner, despite having been off the track since finishing fourth in the Group Two Hardwicke Stakes at Royal Ascot last summer.

Hamish (near side) winning at York
Hamish (near side) winning at York (Clint Hughes/PA)

The gelding’s involvement depends on significant rainfall, however.

“He needs rain and quite a bit of it, so I don’t know if he’ll get it,” said Haggas.

“We’ll decide about his participation nearer the time, but he’s trained very well.

“He’s a smart horse and we’ve had this in mind for a while, so it would be nice to have a go, but we’ll see.”

Hamish’s stablemate Ilaraab has proven his liking for the York track already, having won there twice to date.

The Ebor represents a step up in trip for the colt, but Haggas is confident that he possesses the stamina necessary to succeed.

“He’s in good shape and he’s ready to go,” the trainer said.

“I think it looks like he’ll get the trip no problem.

“He’s got a lot of weight (9st 11lb), but he’s a good horse and I think he prefers going left-handed, so that will suit him on Saturday.”

Roberto Escobarr is one of two Haggas entrants owned by Hussain Alabbas Lootah, the other being his full-brother Pablo Escobarr.

William Haggas would love to win the Ebor
William Haggas would love to win the Ebor (Nigel French/PA)

“Roberto stays well and likes fast ground. He should run well. He’s a very genuine, game horse,” Haggas added.

“Pablo is Pablo. He ran a good race last weekend (third in the Geoffrey Freer Stakes) and enjoys his racing. He’s here hoping for the best.”

Ireland have a handful of chances to take home the huge prize, one of which is Karl Thornton’s dual-purpose gelding Shanroe.

The bay won his place in the field with victory in the Ebor when winning the Race To The Ebor Handicap at the Curragh in June.

Shanroe winning over hurdles at Fairyhouse
Shanroe winning over hurdles at Fairyhouse (Niall Carson/PA)

Thornton is another trainer praying for rain, saying: “We’ll see what the weather does. His work has been really good and everything seems to be going to plan.

“It’s a case of the more (rain) the better, that will definitely be to his benefit, so hopefully the rain does come now.

“He definitely stays and everything’s gone to plan with him, so we’ll be hoping for a big run.”

Fearby fired up for Gimcrack challenge

Ed Bethell’s Fearby looks to make a successful step up to Group Two level in the six-furlong Al Basti Equiworld Dubai Gimcrack Stakes at York on Friday.

The two-year-old took a maiden race at Wetherby and then progressed to win the Listed Dragon Stakes at Sandown by five lengths in early July.

A first Pattern-race contest followed at Goodwood, where the son of Havana Gold was second behind Richard Hannon’s Armor in the Group Three five-furlong Molecomb Stakes.

“He goes there in really good form,” said North Yorkshire-based Bethell.

“I think the step up to six will hopefully be in his favour and we’re going there hopeful.”

Although rain is expected to fall at some stage during the Ebor meeting, Fearby has form on varying types of ground and will take his chance regardless.

“He’s won on good to firm and he’s won on good to soft so we’ll run whatever happens,” said Bethell.

“He’s not ground dependent, he’ll run whatever the ground and I think a fast ground six (furlongs) will be better than a soft-ground six.”

The Hannon-trained Lusail heads the market after taking the Group Two July takes at Newmarket by a head from subsequent Richmond Stakes winner Asymmetric.

“The form of his win in the July Stakes couldn’t have worked out any better with the second, Asymmetric, winning the Richmond,” Hannon said on his Unibet blog.

“That obviously gives us plenty of confidence and we decided to pull him out of Goodwood because of the ground.

“The good thing about Lusail is that he’s incredibly easy to train, he isn’t flashy in his work, but neither is Snow Lantern, yet he seems to come alive on the race track and he already has experience at York having won on debut.

“This is no ‘gimme’ but there’s no doubt he has the best form coming into it and we’ll obviously be disappointed if he doesn’t go close to winning.”

Roger Fell runs Cotai Glory colt Eldrickjones, who was last seen finishing fifth in Goodwood’s Vintage Stakes after getting loose beforehand and then being badly hampered with a furlong left to travel.

“We worked him the other day and he worked really well,” Fell said.

“He’s in really good form and we’re really pleased with him at home.

“He’s well after Goodwood and he’ll have two people leading him up this time.”

Richard Fahey’s Vintage Clarets will return to a six-furlong trip after taking on the five-furlong Weatherbys Super Sprint Stakes last time out and coming home sixth of a field of 22.

Prior to that the colt was third in the Coventry Stakes at Royal Ascot, where he was beaten a length and a half by Andrew Balding’s Berkshire Shadow.

“He was third in the Coventry behind Oisin’s horse (Berkshire Shadow) and I just think six furlongs at York will really suit him,” said Fahey

“He’s a quick horse and he didn’t have much luck in the Weatherbys Super Sprint, I think he’s a good price.”

Berkshire Shadow will cross paths with Vintage Clarets, while Charlie Hills is represented by Rose Bowl Stakes third Orazio and Kevin Ryan has both Gis A Sub and Spitting Feathers.

Karl Burke’s Last Crusader, Michael O’Callaghan’s Twilight Jet and the Ed Walker-trained American Star round up the field of 11.

Live Your Dream handed reserve role for Ebor

Ante-post favourite Live Your Dream is first reserve for Saturday’s Sky Bet Ebor at York after missing the cut by one.

Trainer Saeed bin Suroor and jockey Pat Cosgrave had faced an anxious wait to see if the four-year-old, who has won three of his four starts this term, would sneak into the field for the 14-furlong handicap.

The Knavesmire feature has a safety limit of 22 and Live Your Dream just failed to scrape into the line up, with Shanroe – who won a qualifying event at the Curragh which guaranteed an Ebor run – the last horse in.

Euchen Glen tops the Ebor field
Euchen Glen tops the Ebor field (Alan Crowhurst/PA)

Euchen Glen will shoulder a top weight of 10st 2lb for trainer Jim Goldie after an exceptional campaign that has seen him win at both Group Three and Listed level, as well as a narrow defeat at Glorious Goodwood.

Sonnyboyliston, one of two runners for Johnny Murtagh along with Mirann, the William Haggas-trained pair of Ilaraab and Hamish and last year’s winner Fujaira Prince are all towards the head of the betting and have been declared.

Willie Mullins’ Saldier was another leading fancy but he does not feature in the final field, with the Tony Mullins-trained Princess Zoe a further high-profile absentee after also sidestepping a possible run in Friday’s Lonsdale Cup.

Real World also runs for Godolphin at York
Real World also runs for Godolphin at York (David Davies/PA)

Bin Suroor’s Real World does get the chance to go for gold on the Knavesmire in the Sky Bet And Symphony Group Strensall Stakes.

An easy winner of the Royal Hunt Cup at Ascot, he struck at Listed level last time and bids to graduate to Group Three company.

He faces six classy rivals though, with Lord Glitters, My Oberon, Duke Of Hazzard, Bell Rock, El Drama and Brunch in opposition.

Primo Bacio (right) is back at York
Primo Bacio (right) is back at York (Alan Crowhurst/PA)

Primo Bacio returns to the Knavesmire for the Sky Bet City Of York Stakes after some fine efforts in Group One races.

Ed Walker’s filly was a Listed winner at the track in May and has since finished fifth in the Falmouth Stakes and a close-up seventh in the Prix Rothschild at Deauville.

Last year’s Prix Maurice de Gheest winner Space Blues tries to get back on track for Charlie Appleby after finishing fourth at Goodwood after a break since  the Dubai Carnival and he will be joined by stablemate Glorious Journey.

Sir Busker just missed out in the Sovereign Stakes at Salisbury but tries again for William Knight with John Quinn running both Highfield Princess and Safe Voyage.

Lord Of The Lodge, Pogo and Fivethousandtoone complete the field.

Gosden pins Ebor hopes on Humanitarian

John Gosden is set to rely on Humanitarian in Saturday’s Sky Bet Ebor at York.

The five-year-old has not been seen since winning at Newbury 11 months ago due to a setback.

Gosden had hoped to also run Grand Bazaar, but he seems highly unlikely to make the cut for a race the trainer won back in 2018 with Muntahaa.

“Humanitarian gets in, I don’t think Grand Bazaar does, is the way I feel at the moment,” said Gosden.

Frankie Dettori jumps for joy from Stradivarius at York
Frankie Dettori jumps for joy from Stradivarius at York (Simon Cooper/PA)

“Humanitarian has been off for a long time. He sustained an injury last back-end, but he has been in good form and we thought we’d just go straight for it.

“He’s full of the joys of life and working nicely. He might race a little fresh, but it’s a big field to get tucked away in.”

In other significant Ebor news, ante-post favourite Live Your Dream still needs five to come out above him at the final declaration stage to make the cut.

Gosden, meanwhile, will have several big chances throughout the week, including Mishriff in the Juddmonte International and Stradivarius in the Lonsdale Cup – and he admits to having a soft spot for the Knavesmire.

He said: “There’s no doubt in our minds that we regard Royal Ascot and the Ebor meeting as the big meetings of the English summer. I know there’s Goodwood as well, but this is a wonderful meeting.

John Gosden has enjoyed many big days at York
John Gosden has enjoyed many big days at York (Tim Goode/PA)

“Probably what I like most about it is the extraordinarily passionate but also very knowledgeable crowds you get at York. When you talk to people there, they know the pedigrees of the horses better than yourself!

“They really know their horses and their racing and that’s something I’ve always found quite unique and really rather fulfilling about going to the meeting.”

Dream team facing Ebor wait

Ante-post favourite Live Your Dream is still not guaranteed a run in the Sky Bet Ebor following the confirmation stage for the big handicap at York on Saturday.

The Saeed bin Suroor-trained gelding has progressed all season, most recently landing a heritage handicap at Newmarket’s July meeting.

The Willie Mullins-trained Saldier is another not certain to make the cut, although there are no such worries for the Karl Thornton-trained Shanroe who currently sits outside the top 22 runners but is guaranteed a place in the line-up after winning a qualifying race at the Curragh in June.

Jim Goldie’s evergreen Euchen Glen remains on course at the top of the weights, while other leading fancies include the Johnny Murtagh-trained Sonnyboyliston and Hamish from the William Haggas yard. Tony Mullins’ Gold Cup runner-up Princess Zoe also stands her ground.

Away from the Ebor, high-class filly Primo Bacio has been supplemented for the Sky Bet City of York Stakes.

Trained by Ed Walker, the three-year-old was unfortunate not to be closer than she was in the Falmouth Stakes and was last seen finishing seventh behind Mother Earth in the Prix Rothschild at Deauville.

William Knight’s consistent Sir Busker is among the potential opposition, as is Charlie Appleby’s Glorious Journey and Space Blues, but Haggas has taken out impressive weekend winner Sacred.

Kemari and Yibir clash with High Definition in Great Voltigeur

Godolphin have two shots at success in the Sky Bet Great Voltigeur Stakes at York on Wednesday with both Kemari and Yibir declared for trainer Charlie Appleby.

The former brings with him a record of three runs and two victories, the most recent and prestigious of which was in the Queen’s Vase at Royal Ascot in June.

Yibir was well beaten in Goodwood’s Gordon Stakes last time out, but prior to that was a Group Three winner at Newmarket when taking the Bahrain Trophy in early July and was only a neck behind illustrious stablemate Adayar in the Classic Trial at Sandown.

One-time Derby favourite High Definition heads a trio of Ballydoyle entrants as he looks to realise some of his early potential, with Gordon Stakes runner-up Sir Lucan and Grand Prix de Paris fourth The Mediterranean also representing Aidan O’Brien.

Ralph Beckett’s Scope, Roger Varian’s Third Realm and the Andrew Balding-trained Youth Spirit complete the field of eight.

Dubawi Legend leads a select field for the Tattersalls Acomb Stakes.

The Hugo Palmer-trained colt will put his unbeaten record on the line having won his maiden by five lengths at Doncaster in July.

Richard Hannon’s Ehraz is also due to line up off the back of an impressive win as he was last seen taking the Crocker Bulteel Maiden Stakes at Ascot by four and a quarter lengths.

Balding calls upon Imperial Fighter, who has one run and one victory to his name, with Appleby and Godolphin represented by Noble Truth and Mark Johnston’s Royal Patronage rounding up the field.

Murtagh planning dual challenge for Ebor prize

Johnny Murtagh expects to be doubly represented in the Sky Bet Ebor at York on Saturday through Mirann and Sonnyboyliston.

Murtagh, who has enjoyed winners at Royal Ascot and Glorious Goodwood already this season, won the Ebor in 2014 with Mutual Regard but never won the race as a jockey.

Mirann, fourth in the Duke of Edinburgh at Ascot, is owned by the OTI Racing Syndicate based in Australia and is likely to head there after York.

Sonnyboyliston won a Listed race at Limerick on his penultimate outing before having a sighter over the Ebor course and distance behind Hukum in the Silver Cup.

Louis Steward and the Johnny Murtagh-trained Mutual Regard winning the Ebor in 2014
Louis Steward and the Johnny Murtagh-trained Mutual Regard winning the Ebor in 2014 (Anna Gowthorpe/PA)

“Both horses are going, and are training very well. We’ve been thinking about the race for a while,” said Murtagh.

“Mirann will hopefully be heading on to Melbourne after that.

“Sonnyboyliston is also entered in the Melbourne Cup, but we are not sure what his plan is after the Ebor.

“Both horses are ready for the Ebor.”

Blue Cup to step up in search of Ebor riches

Royal Ascot fourth Blue Cup is on target for the Sky Bet Ebor at York next week.

The David Menuisier-trained five-year-old put up a career-best in the Wolferton Stakes and will try a trip beyond a mile and quarter for the first time in the £500,000 feature on the Knavesmire.

The Pulborough handler said: “The Ebor is a punt because he has never been further than a mile and two, but when he switches off he travels very sweet, so I don’t see why he couldn’t stay further.

“I would rather try now, before he’ll be too high in the weights, so this will be our last possible opportunity to run in a race like the Ebor.

Blue Cup powers home in the rain at Epsom
Blue Cup powers home in the rain at Epsom (Mike Egerton/Jockey Club)

“Despite the trip, you know they are going to go a good pace with 22 runners, which is why we think the Ebor is the right race to try him over further. I think it will be interesting to see how we fare.”

Formerly trained in France, Blue Cup has progressed well for his new yard and Menuisier is keen to put a line through his run in the Steventon Stakes at Newbury, where he was last of the eight runners.

He said: “The ground was too quick. He got away with it at Royal Ascot and at Newbury he travelled well, but when he came under pressure he didn’t find anything.

“He wasn’t able to put his best foot forward there, but he came out of the race absolutely fine and it turned out to be a very good race. There was no shame in defeat, especially considering he couldn’t let himself down.”

Reflecting on his Wolferton performance, Menuisier added: “The form of the race is very strong having finished just in front of Euchen Glen, who is a proven Group horse. As we all know, the Wolferton is a better race than a Listed race. I think he’ll be competitive later on in ‘normal’ Listed races and Group Threes.”

Wonderful Tonight (right) is being aimed towards the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe
Wonderful Tonight (right) is being aimed towards the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe (John Walton/PA)

As well as Blue Cup, Menuisier could be in action at the meeting with stable star Wonderful Tonight – and any rain would be welcome.

He said: “If the whole meeting could be run on soft ground, it would suit me well!

“In an ideal world, we could do with a bit of rain for Blue Cup. I also have Migration set to run in the mile-and-a-quarter handicap on the Saturday and Wonderful Tonight holds an entry in the Darley Yorkshire Oaks.

“We have York and a couple of French options for her. We will go wherever we think suits best.

“She’s in good form and has come out of Goodwood (Lillie Langtry Stakes) very well. If the ground is on the easy side at York, the Yorkshire Oaks is definitely a race we are bearing in mind.”

Shanroe sights set on Ebor glory

Karl Thornton is relishing the prospect of Sky Bet Ebor success as he prepares Shanroe to take on the richest Flat handicap in Britain.

The seven-year-old booked his place in the race with victory at the Curragh in early June, one of four contests that earn the winner an Ebor spot.

This season is the first that one such race has been staged in Ireland, with the other three qualifiers, the Melrose Stakes, the Jorvik Stakes and the Grand Cup, all hosted on the same Knavesmire turf as the Ebor itself.

Shanroe, a dual-purpose performer who has winning form over hurdles, will travel from Thornton’s stable in Skerries, County Dublin for the one-mile-six-furlong feature, and his trainer is expecting him to show further improvement on the level.

“I still think there’s more to come from him on the Flat,” he said.

“I don’t think he was at his best going to the Curragh when he won the last day, so we’ve given him a nice little break, freshened him up and the plan is to head over to York with him now.

“I won’t say he’s the finished article on the Flat, he’s still learning the trade, even though he is seven he hasn’t had much mileage on the clock.”

Shanroe’s success on the Curragh came on good to yielding ground, but many of his hurdling performances have been on even softer going and the trainer would welcome rain in Yorkshire to make the Ebor a true staying test.

“He definitely stays well as he showed at the Curragh,” Thornton said.

“If we did get a bit of a rain the week of York, it would be a help to him. He is very genuine, very tough as well.

“He’s strengthened up a good bit since he ran in the Curragh. So, yes, just get him there fresh and well. He’s a clear-winded horse, so two more bits of works to leave him spot on.”

The prospect of Ebor glory is enough to entice jockey Robbie Colgan, who is not a fan of flying, to make the journey across to England for the race.

“Robbie’s a big help to him,” Thornton said.

“He doesn’t like flying too far, but he said he’d go over and ride him! Robbie seems to know him inside out. He’s definitely a big plus for us.”

Neither horse nor jockey are making the trip to York merely to make up the minor places and Thornton is assured that his runner goes with a live chance in the contest.

“I wouldn’t bring him if I thought he wasn’t good enough,” he said.

“You’d want a Group horse and I think he could be a Group horse. So you’d want to be that type of horse going. I wouldn’t want to travel him if I thought he wasn’t going to be competitive.

“I know the prize-money is good, but there’s no point going over there to make up numbers.”

Bin Suroor plots patient rise for Real World

Saeed bin Suroor will continue to take small steps up the ladder with Real World – but he believes the potential is there for the son of Dark Angel to reach the top.

An eye-catching winner of the Royal Hunt Cup at Ascot in June, Real World then stepped up in trip and class at Newbury to win a Listed race.

His rating of 116 puts him hot on the heels of the best around, although the Godolphin trainer is happy to take a steady approach.

“We’ll look for a Group Three for him next – he’s progressing,” said Bin Suroor.

“He was keen early on (over 10 furlongs at Newbury), but still finished well. He’s doing well and came out of his last race well – I’m happy with him.

“We’ll look after him, because he’s a horse with a big future now. He’s rated 116, he’s very good. He’ll be in some big races in the future.

“He ran in Dubai this year, and finished second and third on dirt, so he handles it. After he’s finished here, he’ll go back out to Dubai in the winter.

“Physically he’s better than before. He might be one for the World Cup – we’ll see.

“I don’t think we’ll go over a mile and a half, because he’s showing more speed now, (so) I think we’ll keep him to a mile and a mile and a quarter. We’ll see in Dubai if we want to try him over further.”

Live Your Dream (white hat) is heading for the Ebor
Live Your Dream (white cap) is heading for the Ebor (David Davies/PA)

Bin Suroor also has one of the favourites for the Sky Bet Ebor in Live Your Dream, winner of four of his seven starts to date and set to be joined on the Knavesmire by the yard’s Newmarket winner Untold Story.

Bin Suroor said of Live Your Dream: “The Ebor looks the race for him. He’s improving – he came out of his last race nicely and he’s in good form.

“He’s probably a Group Three horse at the moment, but I think you need a Group horse for the Ebor, so we’ll take it from there.

“Good ground would be what he wants.”

He added of Untold Story: “The trip was too far for him (two and a half miles) at Ascot. He is tough and he tries hard.

“Having juice in the ground helps him. I think he is best on good or good to soft ground.

“We will take him to the Ebor now, with Live Your Dream, and I think a mile and six will be better for him.”

Roberto Escobarr puts down Ebor marker

Roberto Escobarr threw his hat into the ring for Sky Bet Ebor with a gritty win over the same course and distance at York.

Trained by William Haggas, the relatively lightly-raced four-year-old was sent off the 11-8 favourite in a field of four for the Listed Sky Bet Race To The Ebor Grand Cup Stakes.

Despite the select field, the 4,000 crowd were treated to a thrilling finish – with the quartet all in a line a furlong out.

David O’Meara’s Makawee tried to make all and kept on responding to her riders’ urgings – while Frankie Dettori headed for the rail on Red Verdon, his only ride of the day.

Ranch Hand was also in there battling on, but it soon became apparent Red Verdon and the eventual winner had pulled clear.

It was then the Galileo colt, having just his fifth start, who pulled away to win by a length and a half under Tom Marquand.

Roberto Escobarr holds an entry at Royal Ascot next week in the  Copper Horse Stakes – but appears unlikely to take it up.

Haggas’ wife Maureen said: “It was a strange race – they were all spread out, and he didn’t really have anything to race with.

“He just does enough, this horse. The Ebor could be a possible, but I doubt he’d run back quick at Ascot.

“He’s going the right way. He didn’t like the ground last time at Ascot – he likes quick ground and he stays well, (and) hopefully he’s one of those who will keep on improving.

“He’s one of those big horses, he’s still quite babyish and hasn’t had many runs.”

It was a fourth win from the last five runners for the yard, and Haggas added: “It’s a good time for them to be in form – any time is really.

“It’s the hardest week of the year to have winners next week, but we’ll be particularly looking forward to Mohaafeth (Hampton Court) and Alenquer (King Edward VII).

“Some won’t go because of the ground, and quite a few won’t get in the handicaps, but we’ll do our best.”

The sponsors cut the winner to 12-1 from 16s for the Ebor.

Stat of the Day, 22nd August 2020

Friday's pick was...

2.45 York : Yazaman @ 9/2 BOG 6th at 3/1 (Tracked leaders, ridden 2f out, weakened inside final furlong) 

Saturday's pick runs in the...

4.10 York :

Before I post the daily selection, just a quick reminder of how I operate the service. Normally, I'll identify and share the selection between 8.00am and 8.30am and I then add a more detailed write-up later within an hour or so of going "live".

Those happy to take the early price on trust can do so, whilst some might prefer to wait for my reasoning. As I fit the early service in around my family life, I can't give an exact timing on the posts, so I suggest you follow us on Twitter and/or Facebook for instant notifications of a published pick.

Who?

Ben Macdui @ 3/1 BOG

...in the 10-runner, Listed, Julia Graves Roses Stakes for 2yo over 5f on Good ground worth £17,013 to the winner...

Why?...

As is often the case, the race card is our starting point...

...as it shows a 2 yr old with 2 good results (bt by 0.75L at Gr 3 LTO) and a trainer/jockey partnership to keep the right side of. You can see this for yourself, so I won't labour those points, other than to remind you that A/E & IV numbers the further North of 1.00 you can get, the better! This is explained in more detail in our excellent user guide within My Geegeez.

So, what supporting evidence to the pick can I tell you that you might not already know?

Well, we could look at why trainer Kevin Ryan is a featured trainer in another of my unimaginatively-named microsystems (LateSeas2yo), which as you've probably guessed is centred around a group of trainers who do well towards the back end of the season with their "babies". I like to keep my angles' names simple.

To this end, I like to focus on the following : Kevin Ryan + 2yo + Flat + 5f-1m + 11-45 dslr + July-September, which since the 1st July 2016 has produced 57 winners from 220 (25.9% SR) and 180.26pts (+81.9% ROI) of level stakes profit at an A/E of 1.38 and these include of some relevance today...

  • 55/174 (31.6%) for 194.81pts (+112%) in races worth less than £20,000
  • 48/141 (34%) for 209.46pts (+148.6%) in fields of no more than 10 runners
  • 46/100 (46%) for 64.43pts (+64.4%) at odds of 5/1 or shorter
  • 46/171 (26.9%) for 120.24pts (+70.3%) in non-handicaps
  • 39/138 (28.3%) for 129pts (+93.5%) at 11-25 dslr
  • 31/104 (29.8%) for 56.39pts (+54.2%) were placed LTO
  • 20/59 (33.9%) for 120.48pts (+204.2%) with Kevin Stott in the saddle
  • 15/44 (34.1%) for 0.62pts (+1.41%) with LTO runners-up
  • and 9/37 (24.3%) for 26.88pts (+72.7%) here at York

I know that many of you like me to then combine some of the above into a composite angle, but this does dilute the sample size, of course.

However, if we just focus on the first three pieces of data, we find that those sent off at 5/1 or shorter in fields of 10 or fewer runners in races worth less than £20k are 38 from 80 (47.5% SR) for 49.06pts (+61.3% ROI) profit, with Kevin Stott riding 15 winners from 27 (55.6%) for 29.14pts (+107.9%)...

...pointing us towards... a 1pt win bet on Ben Macdui @ 3/1 BOG as was available at 8.05am Saturday, but as always please check your own BOG status (*some firms are not BOG until later in the morning)To see a small sample of odds offered on this race...

...click here for the betting on the 4.10 York

Don't forget, we offer a full interactive racecard service every day!

REMINDER: THERE IS NO STAT OF THE DAY ON SUNDAYS

Here is today's racecard

P.S. all P/L returns quoted in the stats above are to Betfair SP, as I NEVER bet to ISP and neither should you. I always use BOG bookies for SotD, wherever possible, but I use BFSP for the stats as it is the nearest approximation I can give, so I actually expect to beat the returns I use to support my picks. If that's unclear, please ask!

Stat of the Day, 21st August 2020

Thursday's pick was...

4.20 York : Mark of the Man @ 6/1 BOG 6th at 6/1 (Held up in mid-division, not clear run and switched sharply left inside final 2f, 6th and one pace towards finish) 

Friday's pick runs in the...

2.45 York :

Before I post the daily selection, just a quick reminder of how I operate the service. Normally, I'll identify and share the selection between 8.00am and 8.30am and I then add a more detailed write-up later within an hour or so of going "live".

Those happy to take the early price on trust can do so, whilst some might prefer to wait for my reasoning. As I fit the early service in around my family life, I can't give an exact timing on the posts, so I suggest you follow us on Twitter and/or Facebook for instant notifications of a published pick.

Who?

Yazaman @ 9/2 BOG

...in the 10-runner, Group 2, Gimcrack Stakes for 2yo over 6f on Good to Soft ground worth £56,710 to the winner...

Why?...

We start with the racecard...

...that shows a horse running well, for a yard in good recent form and one that has done well at York over the years. Our runner is well placed on the Geegeez SR ratings and I'd say a low draw would be be advantageous today.

Our 2yr old colt has been a runner-up in back to back Gr2 efforts this summer so far and will aim to go one better here and I'd hope/expect that his experiences at this level will stand him in good stead, but it's the trainer's record that I'm basing the bet upon today.

If you click the trainer form button below the horse's name (I've highlighted it in red), you'll see how William Haggas has performed in the last 30 days and also here at York in the last 1 and 5 years, as highlighted by 30, C1 and C5, so I won't insult your intelligence by running you through those numbers, but I will add that...

...here at the Ebor meeting since 2015, William Haggas' runners sent off at odds ranging from 7/4 to 4/1 (where we'll surely end up today) are 8 from 16 (50% SR) for 16.2pts (+101.2% ROI) at an A/E of 1.89 and whilst this is a small-ish sample size, it does include a surprisingly large number of relevant angles at play in today's contest, such as...

  • 7/10 (70%) for 18.06pts (+180.6%) in non-handicaps
  • 7/10 (70%) for 17.6pts (+176%) at 20-45 dslr
  • 6/10 (60%) for 14.75pts (+147.5%) in fields of 7-13 runners
  • 6/9 (66.6%) for 15.97pts (+177.5%) with male runners
  • 5/8 (62.5%) for 13.85pts (+173.2%) at Class 1
  • 5/8 (62.5%) for 12.51pts (+156.4%) with 2 yr olds
  • 4/5 (80%) for 12.58pts (+251.5%) on Good to Soft ground
  • 3/5 (60%) for 8.52pts (+170.3%) at Gr 2
  • 3/5 (60%) for 7.22pts (+144.5%) over this 6f C&D
  • and 3/3 (100%) for 7.81pts (+260.3%) with LTO runners-up

...pointing towards... a 1pt win bet on Yazaman @ 9/2 BOG as was available at 8.10am Friday, but as always please check your own BOG status (*some firms are not BOG until later in the morning)To see a small sample of odds offered on this race...

...click here for the betting on the 2.45 York

Don't forget, we offer a full interactive racecard service every day!

REMINDER: THERE IS NO STAT OF THE DAY ON SUNDAYS

Here is today's racecard

P.S. all P/L returns quoted in the stats above are to Betfair SP, as I NEVER bet to ISP and neither should you. I always use BOG bookies for SotD, wherever possible, but I use BFSP for the stats as it is the nearest approximation I can give, so I actually expect to beat the returns I use to support my picks. If that's unclear, please ask!