Barkston Ash & Arbitrageur in the “Scurry”
Baccarat winning last Saturday in the Wokingham kept up our great run of form in sprint handicaps making it three wins out of the last four Saturday's. We will stick with the sprint handicaps and the Paddy Power Scurry at the Curragh rather than tackle the Northumberland Plate.
I had this race narrowed down to three horses one of which was Alben Star and off goes pricewise and tips up Alben Star taking all the value. One thing his article is correct about is that on good or better ground at the Curragh high drawn horses have an advantage and that is where our selections today are drawn. Of course pace is crucial in sprints and the high drawn Alben Star can provide that liking to race prominently.
Barkston Ash looks primed for a massive run having skipped Royal Ascot last week. He ran a cracker from a high draw at Haydock recently coming home first on the stands side to be the only horse from that side to finish in the first eight home. That was on good/soft ground but before that he finished off his race very strongly over today’s trip on good ground at Thirsk. I fully expect him to finish in the money today from stall 23.
The other horse we want onside today is a huge price and one the market has totally ignored. That is understandable when looking at his recent form figure which read 21, 20, UR. Yep, he managed to lose his jockey coming out of the stalls at Navan in a race won by Shipyard. Not inspiring form but Arbitrageur caught my eye last summer when coming from off the pace to power home over an inadequate five furlong trip on good to firm ground finishing less than two lengths behind Rockingham Handicap winner Whozthecat. Arbitrageur lines up today 4lbs better off having had no chance from a poor draw in the scurry last year. He might run another clunker but from stall 24 and over his preferred trip 50/1 is too big to ignore.
Selection A: Barkston Ash Curragh 16:15 at 16/1 Ladbrokes else 14/1 PaddyPower or Bet365 (all offering 5 Places)
Selection B: Arbitrageur Curragh 16:15 at 50/1 PaddyPower, Ladbrokes & Bet365 (all offering 5 places)
A very busy week for our Eye Catchers List with 7 new additions following Royal Ascot. There are a couple list below that with a good draw can go very close to winning the Bunbury Cup in a couple of weeks time.
Eye Catchers for Week Ending 22nd June
Producer – Trainer Richard Hannon – Jockey Ryan Moore
Producer was the outsider of the Hannon pair in the Queen Anne over the straight Mile but the fact that he was allowed take on his stablemate and winner Toronado was noteworthy. Sure enough he produced a career best performance having been badly outpaced mid race to stay on well and close on the leaders all the way to the line to finish fifth. Just ¾ a length ahead of Producer was 117 rated Tullius who ran bang up to form. Therefore, it was no surprise to see Producer raised 3lbs to a new rating of 114 following this his seasonal debut with further improvement to come. He has a Group 3 entry in the Minstrel stakes at the Curragh mid-July and will be hard to beat if turning up.
The Wow Signal – Trainer John Quinn – Jockey Frankie Dettori
A very impressive winner of the Group 2 Coventry Stakes over 6 furlongs with his Trainer saying The Wow Signal will have no issue staying 7f or 1m. He's a great galloper, we felt six (furlongs) up here would suit, but he'll get seven and a mile." The fact The Wow Signal raced up with the fast pace but kept pulling out more to win well points to longer distances not being an issue and ground conditions not a concern anymore. Jockey Frankie Dettori said: "I was worried about the ground being a bit quick but he showed tremendous courage, he's a real good two-year-old"
Kodi Bear - Trainer Clive Cox – Jockey Adam Kirby
Another horse to catch the eye finishing his race with a rattle was Kodi Bear in the Coventry Stakes. He was out the back and looking for a gap at the furlong pole but had the door slammed in his face and had to be switched back into the middle before picking up well when seeing daylight. The leaders had flown at his point but he ran on very well to finish a closing fifth. With all eyes up front Kodi Bear will surely go underestimated by the market on his next couple of runs and has an interesting entry in the 300k sales race for 2 year olds at Doncaster in September if given a mid-season break.
Hot Streak – Trainer Kevin Ryan – Jockey Jamie Spencer
Hot Streak ran a cracker for a three year old in the King Stands Stakes proving all the hype was well justified. It takes a very good three year old even with the weight for age allowances to be competitive in the all age races especially over the minimum trip. Hot Streak is a class horse and well worth following for the foreseeable future. Trainer Ryan said of Hot Streak: "He's run great, I'm proud of the horse and he has turned up again today. There's a lot to look forward to for the rest of the year. Jamie (Spencer) gave him a super ride, he quickened up and hasn't been beaten too far. There could be a different result later in the year, he's a top horse. I'll have to speak to the owners but I'd imagine he could go to the July Cup."
Tiggy Wiggy – Trainer Richard Hannon – Jockey Richard Hughes
Tiggy Wiggy just failed to reel in leader Anthem Alexander in the Group 2 Queen Mary for fillies over the 5 furlong trip. She showed a really good attitude here to battle hard all the way to the line having been quite noticeably outpaced during the middle half of the race. Jockey Richard Hughes mentioned that this was her first run on fast ground and it took her a while to adjust to the faster pace. What I loved about Tiggy Wiggy is her battling attitude and will to fight despite being flat to the boards. On slightly easier going she will be seen to better affect and Richard Hannon said “She´s in the Super Sprint (Newbury) with 8st 10lb and that could be attractive.
Belgian Bill – Trainer George Baker – Jockey Pat Cosgrave
Belgian Bill was the source of a massive race day gamble (20’s to 8’s) to win back to back Royal Hunt Cups at Royal Ascot and was most unlucky. Jockey Pat Cosgrave made a poor judgement call at the two furlong marker opting to go for a gap up the rail rather than switching to his right where there was a gap. That gap to his right missed by Belgian Bill was quickly filled by Field of Dreams who went on to win well. Such are the split decisions that decide these super handicaps. Belgian Bill was on the Bridle but got stopped in this tracks up the inner and had to wait too long before getting into the clear and staying on well. He has been left on his current mark of 102 and with a good draw in the Bunbury Cup at Newmarket must go close.
Ayaar – Trainer Luca Cumani – Jockey Frankie Dettori
Ayaar ran quite free early doors and Frankie did well to settle him near the back. This turned into a messy race with all the low drawn numbers switching from a straight line to come stands side causing numerous traffic problems. Ayaar picked up very well but got a bumped sideways at the furlong pole and losing his balance and stride. It took him a while to get going again but when he did he ran on very well to finish fifth. Of the first eight finishers just Ayaar and Chill the kite came from mid number draws with the rest all drawn in the high numbers. This was a great effort considering trouble in running for a four year old. The Bunbury Cup is most likely up next off the same rating.
Best of luck,