Tom Stanley's top tips for Friday: Rely on Shady McCoy

By Tom Stanley
Fri 7 Sep 2018

Jabbaar was a frustrating near-miss at 12-1 at Hamilton last week in the Lanark Silver Bell, especially as the winner Archi’s Affaire, was my second fancy in the race. Four more fancies for Friday.

2.40 Ascot: Manjaam at 11-1

The blinkers are back on but that’s not what is of interest here. He’s only worn them once and that was a slightly below par run in a much stronger race.

he key is the drop in trip for this previous course and distance winner, who seemed not to stay on both his recent runs over two miles.

He drops back into a Class three, is only 1lb higher than for his last win, and the yard is going along better than it was when this horse was last over this trip. Plenty of ticks, yet he is still underestimated.

4.10 Haydock: Commander Han at 15-2

I love this horse, for no apparent reason as I've consistently got him wrong in his short career.

I’m sure he’s talented and better than a mark of 90, although there’s little proof yet. He ran well last time (first start after being gelded) in a hot race at York and looked likely to at least place turning in.

He seemed not to stay and the drop in trip here is a big plus. That’s not to say a mile is not possible in future but he does plenty early and the tempo of this should suit better in first-time cheekpieces. I also think returning to slightly easier ground will suit.

4.20 Ascot: Shady McCoy at 4-1

[(full) Watch Replay] () Watch what happened when Moore and Shady McCoy combined at Ascot

He’s yet to win over a mile but I’m not keen to say he doesn’t get it. He certainly did here at the Shergar Cup meeting but that was the round mile and he was held up off a modest pace.

This straight track suits him much better and he’s got pace to chase from stall 1 to his outside. Second in the Bunbury Cup, he was never really involved for all he finished second his side in the International here and he didn’t get the runs needed at Goodwood and Chester either side of that Shergar Cup race.

Add to that, Ryan Moore being one from one on him, at this track, and there is a lot to be positive about.

4.55 Ascot: Akbar Shah at 11-1

Has plenty in his favour. A stiff six back on quick ground looks ideal and the booking of Jamie Spencer by the connections who were successful in the Sandringham with the same jockey makes the horse all the more interesting.

I like his draw in one, too. Boy In The Bar won this from that draw a few years ago while last year’s winner, Mullionheir, trod that far side path 12 months ago.

There’s pace in 7, 8 and 11 so not right next door but Spencer will know where it is and tuck this keen-goer in before switching out. He may be worth a watch on the way down as he proved a handful at Newmarket last time.

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