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Dave Nevison: My Saturday horse racing tips for York and more

By Dave Nevison@nevisondave
Sat 20 Aug 2022

Our resident website tipster Dave Nevison has three best bets for the final day of a memorable Sky Bet Ebor Festival at York as well as another tip from Sandown. Enjoy an excellent day of action live on Racing TV and Racing TV Extra.

2.25 York: Soulcombe

I am licking my wounds after going in deep with a William Haggas handicap ‘good thing’ in the last on Thursday, so they don’t all win. However, it is hard to escape the fact that the trainer seemingly has the favourite in just about every prestige handicap and Soulcombe looks a worthy market leader to me.

His latest run at Goodwood looks to merit more than the 2lb rise he received after winner Secret State went on to be placed in the Great Voltigeur and is now an outsider for the St Leger.

Hollie Doyle will have to be on her game to ensure that this habitual slow starter doesn’t lose too much ground out of the stalls but a strong pace after that looks set to suit Soulcombe very well.

A tongue tie has been added to the blinkers and these additional two furlongs might also bring about improvement.

3.35 York: Alfred Boucher

After Alfred Boucher struck over two miles earlier in the week, I was really quite surprised by how unexcited trainer Ian Williams had seemed in the post-race interview. I thought it was a seriously impressive performance and the 4lb penalty has got him into Europe’s richest handicap. I would hope Williams might be a little more exuberant if he could win this one!

Few of his rivals come here in better form, Alfred Boucher certainly looks to be improved since moving yards and he could be significantly well in here. The penalty takes him up to his highest ever mark, but he has run well in Listed company previously and certainly 4lbs wouldn’t have gone close to stopping him on Wednesday. I also feel that a strongly-run race over two furlongs shorter might actually suit him even better than two miles.

The danger is that the run may come too quick, but it didn’t look as though it would have taken too much out of him given the way he travelled and in these circumstances I always rely on the trainer’s judgement.

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3.50 Sandown: Secret Box

I will let the market be my guide as to whether Secret Box is fit and well for his seasonal reappearance but I would generally have few worries about a Prescott horse after an absence - especially given the current form of the yard.

One thing for certain is that, if he is fit, he is also ridiculously well-handicapped if measured against the horse he beat on his final start of last season. Nell Quickly has won a handicap off 89 this season and been placed at Group Three level while the runner back in fourth has won off 89, so it is difficult to see how Secret Box has remained on a mark of 81 here.

He is already proven over course and distance, too.

4.10 York: Regional

I am sticking with Ed Bethell’s sprinter who got in the places for me in the Stewards’ Cup – but if he got out earlier he might possibly have won at Goodwood.

Regional seems to be fully recovered from whatever ailed him and enabled Bethell to pick him up cheaply from Richard Fahey’s, and while he is 3lb higher now (2lb better off with runner-up Tabdeed) weight is a marginal issue for me in these big sprints.

Regional seems to have run himself into peak form this season and looks to be ideally drawn to run a very big race here. Races have been won over on the far rail this week and stall 5 looks ideal to avoid getting trapped behind runners as happened at Goodwood. He should go very close here on the way to Ayr’s Gold Cup.

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