It is Coronation Cup day on Friday, albeit at Newmarket, and we are in for a treat with a high-class field of seven declared for the Group One contest.
I see no reason why Ghaiyyath will not make all the running and hold off both Defoe and Stradivarius who will definitely be closing him down up the hill.
However, Godolphin’s charge is short enough and the betting opportunities for me are elsewhere on the card.
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I am assuming this lightly-raced four-year-old is not the easiest horse to train, but if he is in good shape physically, I believe he could go places this season.
He is not exactly an underachiever as he won two of his three starts last season, both of which were at Ascot.
I have a feeling he will be aimed at the Wokingham given how well he acts at that track and a win here would ensure he gets in a slightly reduced field.
Swindler is a hold up horse and Newmarket doesn’t always favour such types, but there is pace everywhere in this field and the race could actually be teed up perfectly for him.
Andrea Atzeni looks a very positive booking and I expect him to go very close.
There are lots of lightly-raced horses from big yards in this field and they will no doubt dominate the market, but going through them, I wasn’t sure they looked as certain to improve as I first thought.
All of them look to have either shown signs of weakness getting beaten in small fields at short prices or appear to be running over a trip too short, or possibly too long a trip.
I think it may be worth looking for a result in this 12f handicap. Grandee perhaps didn’t go on as many expected last season after an easy victory at Newcastle, but I believe he proved pretty conclusively that he didn’t really get two miles, so plenty of his runs can be discarded.
Roger Fell’s yard has certainly not suffered disruption during lockdown and almost all of his runners have performed very well. Grandee should be a decent price and can be placed at least.
His season only really got going in the last week of October last year when he was narrowly beaten in a similar contest to this at Newbury.
He started last year on this track off a 7lb higher mark than he has now and finished a promising fourth which suggested a win was imminent. However, for whatever reason he went backwards until that final run.
His trainer had a well-backed winner at Kempton on Wednesday and James Doyle keeps the ride which is no bad thing. Against very exposed sprinters here, he will hopefully show his troubles are behind him.
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