INFORM SPRINTERS TO DOMINATE PORTLAND
It's Leger day at Doncaster as well as Day 1 of Irish Champions weekend over at Leopardstown. Hurricane Lane looks impossible to oppose in the Leger.
The Portland Handicap race was established in 1855, and for a period it was known as the Portland Plate. The original course started opposite a coaching inn called Red House, and it featured a left-handed bend at about halfway. The race was later transferred to a straight course. It is run over the intermediate trip of five and a half furlongs.
Mondammej gained a well deserved second win of the season when running down Copper knight at Haydock last Saturday. He must be ridden cold during the early parts of a race and then come home fast. That leaves him a hostage to fortune in sprints, with the pace and luck running through horses at the mercy of the Gods! I doubt there will be anything but a strong pace today and the extra half furlong should offer more time for Jockey Cam Hardie to steer a clear passage.
Mondammej stays six furlongs well as he proved when second at Newcastle in June. He beat the Great St Wilfrid winner Justanotherbottle at Pontefract at the start of the season improving throughout the season to his current mark of 93. This sprinter has settled down some over the course of the season and hopefully will go in and out of the stalls without drama for his connections the Brittain family.
Mr Wagyu takes over from Jawwaal who has been declared a non-runner, due to a change in the going. The rain has come, and the ground is officially good to soft, soft in places this morning having been fast all week! Mr Wagyu will relish the soft going having won the consolation Stewards Cup at Goodwood over six furlongs on soft ground. The handicapper raised him 8lbs for that victory which was quite the hike! Things didn’t pan out for Mr Wagyu in the Great St Wilfrid when tiring over the final furlong Possibly, that race came too soon following five quick runs in succession during July. John Quinn has freshened him up for this target and off a 28 day break he can run a big race on soft ground which will test the stamina of several of these speed ball sprinters.
Doncaster - 1:45
0.5 Point Each Way Mondammej 17/2 William Hill paying 6 places.
0.5 Point Each Way Mr Wagyu 14/1 Paddy Power & Betfair SB, both paying 6 places.