Posts

Spirits seeking further Listed glory in Fleur De Lys heat

Cloak Of Spirits bids for her second Listed success of the season at Lingfield on Thursday following a fine effort at Group One level.

The Richard Hannon-trained filly ran a tremendous race to finish third in the Sun Chariot Stakes, only beaten a length and three-quarters by the winner, Nazeef.

That came after the daughter of Invincible Spirit had landed her first win of the season in the Listed Rosemary Stakes over the Rowley Mile.

Cloak Of Spirits now makes her first appearance on an artificial surface in the Ladbrokes EBF Fleur De Lys Fillies’ Stakes, a fast-track qualifier for the All-Weather Championships.

Trainer Richard Hannon
Trainer Richard Hannon (Nigel French/PA)

“Her last two runs have probably been her best runs of the season,” said Hannon.

“She’s in good form, I think the track will suit and she’s got a nice draw, so I’m very hopeful she’ll run very well.”

When Cloak Of Spirits was second in the 1000 Guineas on her seasonal debut, Romsey was a length and three-quarters behind her in fifth place at the massive odds of 200-1.

However, the daughter of Mukhadram was kept off the track until earlier this month. She looked to need the outing when well-beaten in the Group Three Pride Stakes at Newmarket when stepping up to a mile and a quarter.

Your first 30 days for just £1

Trainer Hughie Morrison is just pleased to have the filly back on the course.

“Romsey obviously ran a great race in the 1000 Guineas, but she came back from there a bit jarred up, so we had to give her a break and have run out of time a bit really,” said the East Ilsley handler.

“We ran her at Newmarket at the start of month just to sharpen her up more than anything, as there are a lack of opportunities on the turf.

“We hope she will get a mile and a quarter in time, but she certainly wasn’t going to that day given the testing ground and her fitness levels.

Trainer Hughie Morrison expects Romsey to have benefited from her recent outing
Trainer Hughie Morrison expects Romsey to have benefited from her recent outing (Julian Herbert/PA)

“Cloak Of Spirits brings in the best form and is clearly the one to beat, but if we can run up to our Guineas form, we should be able to give her a race getting 3lb, as we were only a couple of lengths behind her at Newmarket.”

Others in the line-up include Sir Michael Stoute’s lightly-raced Soffika, Roger Varian’s Group-race placed Farzeen and Amanda Perrett’s Lavender’s Blue, a Group Three winner in 2019.

The Mark Johnston-trained pair of Vivid Diamond and Tulip Fields head for the Ladbrokes EBF River Eden Fillies’ Stakes in contrasting form.

Tulip Fields looked a filly very much on the up when lifting a mile-and-a-half handicap in good style at Doncaster on Saturday.

“She won impressively at Doncaster last week. She hit the line strong there and it looked like the extra furlong would not be an issue to her,” said Charlie Johnston, assistant to his father.

“She’s already got a bit of black type and we’re looking to try to build a bit more for her for her pedigree.”

Vivid Diamond has been below her best this campaign, which has prompted connections to try her in blinkers.

“She has been a bit disappointing this year,” said Johnston.

“She had a very good autumn last year, winning at Chester and finishing third in the Park Hill. (It’s) been a bit of a struggle this year.

“She’s just not been travelling well through the early stages of her races, so the blinkers have gone on to try to sweeten her up and get her to travel a bit better.

“If they have the desired effect, I think running to a mark of 100 is probably going to be required to win this and she’s certainly capable of doing that on her best form.”

Aidan O’Brien, who took the prize with Delphinia, banks on Elizabethfaragon to give him back-to-back victories.

Eve Johnson Houghton’s Hyanna will attempt to improve on her seventh place in this race 12 months ago. The hat-trick seeking Sorrel and Jane Marple are lightly-raced three-year-olds who could have more to offer.

Thunder Moon leads all-star cast for Dewhurst

Thunder Moon bids to double his top-level tally in a mouthwatering renewal of the Darley Dewhurst Stakes at Newmarket.

A runaway winner on his Curragh debut in early August, Joseph O’Brien’s juvenile then rocketed to the head of ante-post lists for next year’s 2000 Guineas after displaying a blistering turn of foot to land last month’s National Stakes at the Curragh.

O’Brien managed to win the Dewhurst as a jockey aboard his father Aidan’s War Command in 2013, and has high hopes of getting his name on the roll of honour as a trainer on Saturday.

“We’re looking forward to the race. Hopefully the ground dries out as much as possible and we’ll see what happens,” said O’Brien, who took the Fillies’ Mile on Friday with Pretty Gorgeous.

“We were delighted with him at the Curragh and he’s been in good form since.

“The Dewhurst is always a very good race and I’m sure it will be again.”

Wembley (right) is one of two for Aidan O'Brien
Wembley (right) is one of two for Aidan O’Brien (PA)

Aidan O’Brien saddles National Stakes second and third, Wembley and St Mark’s Basilica, in a bid for a seventh Dewhurst success.

He said: “Both ran very nice races last time out in the National Stakes, obviously St Mark’s Basilica was supposed to run in France last week and they would have been kept apart, but that’s the way it is.

“Both have been in good form since their last runs.”

Poetic Flare after winning at Naas
Poetic Flare after winning at Naas (Gary Carson/PA)
Your first 30 days for just £1

Jim Bolger also has a fine Dewhurst record with five victories and is represented by an interesting outsider in Poetic Flare, who has not been seen since making a winning debut in the very first race of the Irish Flat turf season at Naas in March.

Bolger said: “He hasn’t run because he started to grow – he’s grown two inches since March and I didn’t want to push him.

“That’s all settled down now. He’s been fine since the beginning of August and we’ve had an uninterrupted preparation since.

“I thought it would be good to get him away before the end of the year. I think he’ll go on any ground.”

A formidable Irish challenge is headed by Jessica Harrington’s Group Two winner Cadillac.

Richard Hannon is excited about the chances of Chindit
Richard Hannon is excited about the chances of Chindit (Steven Cargill/PA)

The home team is headed by the Richard Hannon-trained Chindit, who extended his unbeaten record to three in the Group Two Champagne Stakes at Doncaster last month.

The Marlborough maestro also saddles a second unbeaten colt in Etonian, who has won twice at Sandown, most recently claiming the Group Three Solario Stakes in August.

“Both horses are fit and well and good to go. We’ve not managed to win the Dewhurst yet, so let’s hope this is our chance,” said Hannon.

“Chindit’s last bit of work with a couple of older horses was very good for a two-year-old. He seems in very good form.

“Etonian has done nothing wrong either. It’s a shame we have to run them against each other really, but this is the right race for both horses and the Dewhurst is always the best two-year-old race of the year.”

Leading owner Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum has a strong hand after Marcus Tregoning’s impressive Mill Reef scorer Alkumait was supplemented to join the Owen Burrows-trained Albasheer. The owner’s retained rider Jim Crowley has sided with Alkumait.

Tregoning said: “I think he’ll stay seven furlongs fine. I suppose seven furlongs in soft ground makes it more of a test, but Showcasing’s progeny are versatile.

“He’ll give himself every chance of getting the trip because he settles well, or at least he did at Newbury, and if he settles as well again, I can’t see seven being a problem

“I think Chindit might be the one to beat. He looked tough at Doncaster, he had to battle but came through it well.

“It’s the right race for us, though, and I’m pleased he’s running.”

Albasheer was beaten just a length into second place by Chindit at Doncaster four weeks ago, having run out an impressive winner on his debut on Town Moor. With Crowley opting for Alkumait, Dane O’Neill takes the ride.

Burrows said: “I’ve been happy with him since Doncaster. He did his last proper piece of work on Saturday and had a breeze midweek.

“He is inexperienced and this will be different for him. I’d like to think wherever Chindit finishes, we would be bang there with him – whether or not that is good enough to win, time will tell.

“On his pedigree he should get a mile next year and we will look to go down that route. God willing he is good enough to be talked as a Guineas horse, but we will learn a lot more on Saturday.”

Tactical won the July Stakes earlier in the campaign
Tactical won the July Stakes earlier in the campaign (Francesca Altoft/PA)

Andrew Balding has two chance in the shape of Mill Reef runner-up Fivethousandtoone and the Queen’s Tactical, who was fourth in the Middle Park having earlier won the July Stakes at Newmarket and the Windsor Castle at Royal Ascot.

Balding said: “Both horses have shown a good level of form and seem in good form.

“Ground conditions could be different to what they’ve encountered before and that is going to play a part, but they’re both in good shape.”

A stellar field is completed by Decisive Edge (Brian Meehan), Devilwala (Ralph Beckett) and Devious Company (Tom Dascombe).

Chindit tops 14 contenders seeking Dewhurst gold

Ante-post favourite Chindit is set to face 13 rivals when he puts his unbeaten record on the line in Saturday’s Darley Dewhurst Stakes.

A winner on his Doncaster debut in early July, Richard Hannon’s juvenile doubled his tally in a Listed race at Ascot before returning to Doncaster to complete his hat-trick in last month’s Group Two Champagne Stakes.

Hannon, who has never won the Dewhurst, also saddles a second unbeaten colt in Etonian, who has won twice at Sandown, most recently claiming the Group Three Solario Stakes in August.

Alkumait was added to the Dewhurst field on Monday
Alkumait was added to the Dewhurst field on Monday (Dan Abraham/PA)

Leading owner Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum has a strong hand after Marcus Tregoning’s impressive Mill Reef scorer Alkumait was supplemented to join the Owen Burrows-trained Albasheer. The latter was beaten a length into second place by Chindit at Doncaster four weeks ago.

A formidable Irish challenge is headed by National Stakes winner Thunder Moon, trained by Joseph O’Brien, whose father Aidan saddles a couple of runners in St Mark’s Basilica and Wembley in a bid for a seventh win in the race.

Jim Bolger also has a fine Dewhurst record with five victories and is represented by an interesting outsider in Poetic Flare, who has not been seen since making a winning debut at Naas in March, while Jessica Harrington sends Group Two winner Cadillac.

A stellar field is completed by Andrew Balding’s pair of Fivethousandtoone and Tactical, Decisive Edge (Brian Meehan), Devilwala (Ralph Beckett) and Devious Company (Tom Dascombe).

Chindit work has Hannon excited ahead of strong-looking Dewhurst

Richard Hannon hailed a piece of work completed by his Darley Dewhurst Stakes hope Chindit last week as “one of the best” he has seen for years on his Herridge gallops.

Hannon sends two unbeaten colts to Newmarket this weekend, with Solario Stakes scorer Etonian set to join Champagne Stakes winner Chindit on the Rowley Mile.

Pat Dobbs had the choice of mount and will partner the latter – who heads Coral’s market at 5-2 ahead of the Joseph O’Brien-trained Thunder Moon at 11-4 – with Tom Marquand taking the ride on Etonian.

“On Thursday morning Chindit did an extremely good piece of work, probably one of the best pieces of work we have seen at Herridge for a lot of years,” Hannon told Unibet.

“We are hopeful that both will run very well, but I think Pat Dobbs was particularly pleased with Chindit and he had the choice of rides.

Your first 30 days for just £1

“On Tuesday morning Etonian did a very nice piece of work, he has never been that much of a showy horse, but he worked well and he is on target for the Dewhurst, Tom Marquand is going to ride.”

Impressive Mill Reef winner Alkumait has been supplemented for the Group One feature.

Alkumait was an impressive winner of the Mill Reef
Alkumait was an impressive winner of the Mill Reef (Alan Crowhurst/PA)

Trained by Marcus Tregoning, the Showcasing colt was a taking victor in the Group Two at Newbury last month.

Owner Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum already had the Owen Burrows-trained Albasheer, runner-up in the Champagne Stakes, engaged, but connections have opted to further strengthen their hand.

Tregoning said: “He runs on Saturday and I’ve been very happy with him since Newbury.

“Obviously we don’t know what the ground is going to be like yet, and we don’t know how many of the Irish horses are coming over.

“Most Showcasings go on soft ground anyway and as he’s in good form, we thought we had to go for it.

“It’s been a while since I won the Dewhurst (with Sir Percy) in 2005, but we’ve had nothing good enough to run in it since. Hopefully this is a good horse, he’s looked it so far.

“The fact Sheikh Hamdan had another horse already entered didn’t come into the reckoning really.”

Thunder Moon, who made a splash when winning the National Stakes in good style, is one of three possibles for O’Brien along with Snapraeterea and State Of Rest.

His father, Aidan, has left in Royal Ascot winner Battleground, who was a late defector from the National Stakes, Wembley, who was second in the National, and St Mark’s Basilica, who was due to run in France on Sunday but was caught up in the contaminated feed situation.

A total of 18 juveniles remain in the mix.

Shine For You may head to Newbury

Richard Hannon has earmarked the Racing TV Stakes at Newbury as a possible target for Shine For You.

The Marlborough trainer believes next month’s seven-furlong Listed prize, better known as the Radley Stakes, could be an ideal next start for the Siyouni filly.

Shine For You built on her debut second behind stablemate Al Fahdaa at Kempton by going one better at Leicester last Monday.

Hannon said: “She made up a lot of ground on her debut at Kempton, and I was very pleased with her run the other day. The second is obviously a decent horse.

“We might look at running her back against her own sex now in the Radley Stakes and try to get some black type with her.

“I think she will like the soft ground, because (jockey) Pat Dobbs said the ground was a bit firm for her at Leicester.”

Dandalla camp confident in Cheveley Park

Trainer Karl Burke is full of confidence as Dandalla returns to Newmarket for the Juddmonte Cheveley Park Stakes.

A winner on her racecourse debut at Newcastle, the daughter of Dandy Man turned in one of the most impressive performances of this year’s Royal Ascot meeting with a six-length demolition job in the Albany Stakes.

She was given a fright by fellow Nick Bradley Racing-owned juvenile Fev Rover in the Duchess of Cambridge Stakes on the July Course the following month, but clung on grimly by a head – and the runner-up has since won in Listed and Group Two company.

Burke remains adamant his filly was not at her best on that occasion, having spiked a temperature during preparation – but having since sidestepped a possible tilt at the Prix Morny, the Spigot Lodge handler believes she is back at the top of her game.

Karl Burke (right) with Dandalla following her latest victory at Newmarket
Karl Burke (right) with Dandalla following her latest victory at Newmarket (Edward Whitaker/PA)

“We couldn’t be happier with her. She’s ready to run and hopefully she’ll do herself justice,” said Burke.

“It took her a little while to come to herself (after the Duchess of Cambridge Stakes), but the last month has been very good.

“I think the bit of rain they’ve had will help, although she is a good-actioned filly and we were surprised how well she handled the ground at Ascot. I don’t think she’s ground dependent.

“It’s going to be an exciting race, with some nice Irish fillies coming over, but you want to be taking on the best in these races.

Your first 30 days for just £1

“We’re looking forward to running our filly – hopefully she can prove us right.”

Nick Bradley is similarly optimistic about Dandalla’s chances, saying: “I think she’ll be four from four by Saturday evening.

“There’s nothing better in my eyes – we go there full of confidence in her.”

The highest-rated filly in the field is Ken Condon’s Lowther Stakes winner Miss Amulet, who will carry the colours of Coolmore powerhouse Michael Tabor’s wife Doreen for the first time.

“She’s a very progressive filly. I thought it was a good performance at York, and she’s done very well since,” said Condon.

“She needs to step up again, but all the signs are good.

“She deserves to take her chance in a Group One now, and we’re looking forward to it.”

The Richard Hannon-trained Happy Romance has produced one of the feel-good stories of the season.

Bought for just £25,000 for first-time owners the McMurray Family, she has won four of her six starts to date – including the Super Sprint at Newbury, another valuable sales race at York and, most recently, the Group Three Dick Poole Stakes at Salisbury.

Happy Romance has been a real money spinner for connections
Happy Romance has been a real money spinner for connections (David Davies/PA)

Happy Romance had the option of running in the Group Two Rockfel Stakes on Friday, but Hannon decided to bid for top-level honours.

He said: “Happy Romance is in great form. She has run well and improved all year. She has not run a bad race yet, and this is the logical next step up.

“What she has done has not surprised us, because she has always shown us a lot. She did well at Salisbury as she did travel wider, but she picked up well.

“This is a much harder race than the Rockfel, but you would rather be winning a Cheveley Park. There are only certain opportunities to win a Group One, and this is one of them, so we have to try to take it.

“It would be lovely to see her win a big one, with the season she has had – she deserves it.”

James Ferguson hopes Zoetic can make her presence felt
James Ferguson hopes Zoetic can make her presence felt (Steven Cargill/PA)

The William Haggas-trained Sacred would not be winning out of turn, having finished second in the Queen Mary Stakes, the Lowther and the Flying Childers this season.

Richard Fahey’s Umm Kulthum turns out seven days after winning the Firth of Clyde at Ayr, while Andrew Balding’s Alcohol Free was less than a length behind Happy Romance at Salisbury a few weeks ago and re-opposes.

The Mick Channon-trained Illykato and Zoetic from James Ferguon’s yard complete the field, with the latter bidding for a third straight win for her fledgling trainer.

“She’s been progressing with every single run of her life – she’s grown up and developed mentally and physically,” said Ferguson.

“She might not be one of the favourites, but I think she’s done enough to earn her chance at this level.”

Menuisier heartbroken at loss of Thundering Blue

David Menuisier has paid tribute to “horse of a lifetime” Thundering Blue after the popular grey suffered a fatal injury at Goodwood.

The seven-year-old was pulled up sharply by Jamie Spencer with around two furlongs to run in the tote Foundation Stakes and was taken for X-Rays.

Menuisier later confirmed the son of Exchange Rate could not be saved.

He tweeted: “I can’t really describe how painful it is to have to report the loss of our beloved Thundering Blue. He lived his life like a warrior and fought his last battle bravely too.

“He will be remembered as the horse of a lifetime and a great friend. We LOVE you forever.”

Your first 30 days for just £1

Thundering Blue won six of his 29 races, including the Group Two York Stakes and Group Three Stockholm Cup, was twice placed in Group One company and won over £460,000 in prize money.

Anna Nerium won the 10-furlong event for trainer Richard Hannon and jockey Sean Levey.

Dropped out early by Levey, she was one of five in a line with a furlong to run as the Godolphin pair of High End and Mythical Magic took on Desert Icon and Oriental Mystique.

Anna Nerium came widest and fastest of all, going on to win at 10-1 – by a length, with High End in second.

Levey told Racing TV: “There was never a doubt about the trip in the end.

“I’m delighted for Mrs McCreery (owner), who has been absolutely brilliant to me ever since I started with the Hannons. It’s nice to win a big race every year with horses like Billesdon Brook, too.

“Although she’s won in the height of summer before, it’s never been her type of ground. Coming here with the rain today, I was actually a little bit confident that she’d run a big race.

“I’m of the belief that if you have a keen horse stepping up in trip, there’s every reason to drop out the back, but you still have to run the same distance. She’s laid back, though, so it was straightforward in that regard.”

Levey is looking forward to riding Happy Romance in the Cheveley Park Stakes on Saturday – although he fears soft ground.

“She’s well worth a crack at a Group One, but I’d fear the rain – realistically I don’t think she’d like soft ground,” he said.

“It has been on the easy side the last twice – but stepping up to that class, you want everything in your favour, and I think that would be quick ground.

“She hasn’t missed many dances this year, but she’s only been beaten twice. She’s got a great mentality and never gives absolutely everything, which is giving her longevity.”

Anna Nerium swoops for Goodwood gold

Anna Nerium relished the step up in trip to 10 furlongs to run out a ready winner of the tote Foundation Stakes at Goodwood.

Richard Hannon’s filly had been disappointing previously this season, but had shown enough previously to suggest that if she did stay the trip, she could be a force to be reckoned with.

Having won the Princess Elizabeth Stakes at Epsom’s Derby meeting last year, her class was not in doubt – and she also had a course success over Dream Of Dreams to her name from two years ago.

Dropped out by Sean Levey, she began her challenge and was one of five in a line with a furlong to run as the Godolphin pair of High End and Mythical Magic took on Desert Icon and Oriental Mystique.

Your first 30 days for just £1

Anna Nerium came widest and fastest of all, going on to win at 10-1 – by a length, with High End in second.

David Menuisier’s popular grey Thundering Blue was pulled up sharply with around two furlongs to run and was taken for X-Rays.

Of the winner, Levey told Racing TV: “There was never a doubt about the trip in the end.

“I’m delighted for Mrs McCreery (owner), who has been absolutely brilliant to me ever since I started with the Hannons. It’s nice to win a big race every year with horses like Billesdon Brook, too.

“Although she’s won in the height of summer before, it’s never been her type of ground. Coming here with the rain today, I was actually a little bit confident that she’d run a big race.

“I’m of the belief that if you have a keen horse stepping up in trip, there’s every reason to drop out the back, but you still have to run the same distance. She’s laid back, though, so it was straightforward in that regard.”

Levey is looking forward to riding Happy Romance in the Cheveley Park Stakes on Saturday – although he fears soft ground.

“She’s well worth a crack at a Group One, but I’d fear the rain – realistically I don’t think she’d like soft ground,” he said.

“It has been on the easy side the last twice – but stepping up to that class, you want everything in your favour, and I think that would be quick ground.

“She hasn’t missed many dances this year, but she’s only been beaten twice. She’s got a great mentality and never gives absolutely everything, which is giving her longevity.”

La Barrosa moves up in class at Newmarket

Impressive Ascot scorer La Barrosa tests the water at Group Three level in the Tattersalls Stakes at Newmarket.

The Lope De Vega colt made a big impression on his racecourse introduction three weeks ago – showing a smart change of gear to leave his rivals, which included Enable’s half-brother Derab, trailing in his wake.

Trainer Charlie Appleby immediately identified Thursday’s seven-furlong contest as a suitable target for La Barrosa, and he will be widely-expected to dispatch five rivals on the Rowley Mile.

Appleby told www.godolphin.com: “La Barrosa produced a very pleasing debut at Ascot and has come out of the race well.

“We felt that he has shown us enough to merit the step up to Pattern company and this should tell us more about his future.”

His highest-rated opponent is the Richard Hannon-trained Ventura Tormenta, who carries a 5lb penalty for winning the Prix Robert Papin at Chantilly in July.

Your first 30 days for just £1

Since that summer triumph in France, the son of Acclamation has finished last of 10 runners in the Phoenix Stakes in Ireland and sixth in the Flying Childers at Doncaster.

Hannon said: “We’ve gone up and down in trip with him a bit, but the guys that ride him think that this trip is what he wants.

“He was the last off the bridle over seven furlongs in a Group Two on the July Course (finished fifth in Superlative Stakes), so let’s hope we have made the right decision.

“I hope the ground isn’t too soft. He has been busy all season and he ran a good race last time out at Doncaster.”

Yazaman would not be winning out of turn for William Haggas, having filled the runner-up in the Windsor Castle at Royal Ascot, the July Stakes at Newmarket, the Richmond Stakes at Goodwood and in a valuable sales race at Doncaster this season.

Qaader (Mark Johnston), Dark Lion (Roger Varian) and Albadri (Jane Chapple-Hyam) complete the sextet.

Six runners are also set to go to post for the Jockey Club Rose Bowl Stakes, which Roger Charlton’s stable stalwart Withhold is bidding to win for the second season running under Jason Watson.

The seven-year-old won a Listed prize on the July Course earlier this year and was last seen finishing second to Trueshan in a conditions event at Salisbury.

“He has dropped in and out of form this season – but as he has got older, he has got wiser,” said Watson.

“He has not been straightforward throughout his career, because he had little injuries and breaks. It was nice to see him run like he did at Salisbury the last day – giving weight away to all bar one.

“I know that was a drop in grade, but it showed that he is still willing to give it a go – and he was only beaten by a progressive, young stayer.

“It isn’t a big field and if we can get out in front and lob along, I think he will run a good race again.

“It really depends which Withhold turns up on the day.”

The standard is set by Johnston’s Mildenberger, who makes his first competitive appearance since being touched off by high-class stablemate Nayef Road in the Sagaro Stakes at Newcastle in early June.

Ghostwatch (Appleby), Ranch Hand (Andrew Balding), Sleeping Lion (James Fanshawe) and Who What When (Murty McGrath) are the other hopefuls.

Hannon pays tribute to King Of Change following retirement announcement

Crack miler King Of Change is to be retired to stud, trainer Richard Hannon has announced.

Runner-up to Magna Grecia when a 66-1 shot for last year’s 2000 Guineas, the Farhh colt went on to prove that effort was no fluke when following up victory in the Fortune Stakes at Sandown with a top-level triumph in the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes at Ascot in October.

However, the four-year-old has not been in competitive action since.

Speaking on his website, www.richardhannonracing.co.uk, the trainer said: “He is without doubt one of the best milers that we have ever trained. His second in the 2000 Guineas was an outstanding effort and he then went on to win the QEII on Champions Day with a performance that I can only describe as impeccable.

“His obvious ability is matched by his physical stature and I am sure he is extremely well equipped to make it as a stallion.

“I would like to express my thanks to the Belhab Family for allowing me to train a star like him. It has been a wonderful opportunity and a great pleasure.

“He will be sorely missed by everyone here when he leaves to do his new job and we look forward to following the paths of his offspring for years to come.”

Confirmation on the stud where King Of Change will stand is expected to be announced in the coming weeks.

Chindit has Champagne sparkle for Hannon

Chindit remained unbeaten as he posted a decisive victory for Richard Hannon in the bet365 Champagne Stakes at Doncaster.

Successful on his only two previous racecourse starts, including a Listed race at Ascot, the son of Wootton Bassett was following up Hannon and jockey Pat Dobbs’ victory in this Group Two event with Threat last year.

Chindit was sent off the marginal second-favourite at 15-8 – with another unbeaten colt, Owen Burrows’ Albasheer, just shading that battle.

But on the track it was Hannon’s rising star who emerged with a length verdict from his main market rival, after they had both travelled powerfully into it, having been towards the rear of runners in the early stages.

Joseph O’Brien’s State Of Rest was just a short-head back in third, with the front three well clear.

Betfair gave the winner an 8-1 from 12-1 quote for next year’s 2000 Guineas, and he is set to further test his Classic claims in the Dewhurst at Newmarket next month.

Hannon said: “He got there quite easily and I thought the first two travelled well and the first three were a long way clear of the fourth.

“That’s probably the best two-year-old race of the season so far. The second is a very good horse and the third obviously is.

“We always thought he was top drawer, but you don’t know until you come here.

“To find a very good horse like him with a good temperament is something you don’t get every year. This is another step up and it’s on to the Dewhurst, hopefully.

“That’s the plan at the moment. That’s the big race of the year and that is where we’re heading, along with Etonian.

“His attitude and the way he behaves gives him every chance of being a horse for the 2000 Guineas – he does look a miler.”

Stat of the Day, 20th August 2020

Wednesday's pick was...

5.20 Stratford : Mon Palois @ 4/1 BOG (2.8/1 after R4) WON at 13/8 (Jumped left but well, made all, 3 lengths ahead when left well clear at the last, eventually winning by 85 lengths) 

Thursday's pick runs in the...

4.20 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.

Your first 30 days for just £1

Who?

Mark of the Man @ 6/1 BOG

...in an 11-runner, Class 2, Nursery Handicap for 2yo over 7f on Good to Soft ground worth £18,675 to the winner... 

Why?...

Well, briefly, we have an in-form horse running at a meeting his trainer does well at and who also has a good record with LTO winners racing under familiar circumstances.

Enough for you? I though not, so let me add some meat to those bare bones, starting with the runner himself. A 2 yr old (obviously) colt who comes here on a hat-trick and was last seen winning a similar Class 2, 7 furlong, 12-runner Nursery at Goodwood three weeks ago, where he stayed on well to win by two lengths taking his record to...

  • 2 from 3 over 7f
  • 2 from 3 with Sean Levey on his back
  • 2 from 2 on turf
  • 2 from 2 at 13-30 dslr
  • 1 from 1 in handicaps

His trainer Richard Hannon has enjoyed recent success at the Ebor meeting with his sub-8/1 runners winning 6 of 16 (37.5% SR) contests over the last four festivals returning level stakes profits of 22.88pts at an ROI of 143%, including...

  • 6/13 (46.2%) for 25.88pts (+199.1%) with 2 yr olds
  • 6/13 (46.2%) for 25.88pts (+199.1%) in fields of 10+ runners
  • 5/9 (55.6%) for 22.25pts (+247.2%) at 16-45 dslr
  • 4/11 (36.4%) for 18.06pts (+164.2%) at Class 2
  • 2/3 (66.6%) for 13.42pts (+447.4%) with Sean Levey in the saddle
  • and 2 from 3 (66.6%) for 4.8pts (+160%) last year alone

And more generally with all his sub-8/1 runners since 2016, Mr Hannon's horses who were LTO winners at the same class/trip are 21 from 57 (36.8% SR) for 40.45pts (+71% ROI) when sent back out within 25 days of that last run/win including of relevance today...

  • 19/50 (38%) for 35.75pts (+71.5%) in races worth less than £20k
  • 18/45 (40%) for 43.75pts (+97.2%) on the Flat
  • 15/34 (44.1%) for 41.25pts (+121.3%) during June to August
  • 12/40 (30%) for 14.89pts (+37.2%) in handicaps
  • 9/18 (50%) for 30pts (+166.6%) with 2 yr olds
  • 5/12 (41.7%) for 22.5pts (+187.5%) for Sean Levey
  • and 3/7 (42.9%) for 10.56pts (+150.9%) in Nurseries

...whilst on the Flat during June-August in sub-£20k races, they are 11 from 25 (44% SR) for 34.48pts (+137.9% ROI) and these include from above...

  • 5/16 (31.25%) in hcps
  • 5/6 (83.3%) with 2 yo's
  • 4/7 (57.1%) for Sean Levey
  • and 2/2 in Nurseries

...giving us... a 1pt win bet on Mark of the Man @ 6/1 BOG (or bigger) as was available at 8.20am Thursday, 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 4.20 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!