At The Race/Skypsorts.com
Sky Sports Racing’s ambassador Hollie Doyle rides in the Ayr Gold Cup on Saturday before starring in a Group 1 in Germany on Sunday.
SPEEDY ALBASHEER CAPABLE OF STRIKING GOLD
There’s no doubt ALBASHEER has the ability to win this weekend’s big sprint, the £180,000 Virgin Bet Ayr Gold Cup Handicap (3.35) on Saturday.
Archie Watson’s five-year-old bounced back to form in timely fashion at York’s Ebor Festival last month, dead-heating with one of this weekend’s market rivals Summerhand in a valuable Class 2 handicap.
He had legitimate excuses at the Curragh two weeks ago when a downpour before racing made the ground too loose for him to produce his turn of foot and we were also left short of room at a crucial stage of the race.
I’m hoping he will cope with the going being on the easy side at Ayr. If he does he undoubtedly has the talent to win this big pot from a decent middle draw in stall 13.
RIPON FORM A POSITIVE FOR SILVER CUP MOUNT
I finished third on WOBWOBWOB at this meeting two years ago so his liking for the track should stand him in good stead in the Virgin Bet Ayr Silver Cup Handicap (2.25).
Adrian Keatley’s gelding is still 5lb higher than his last winning mark but has been running well off similar ratings, including when making the frame in the Great St Wilfrid Handicap at Ripon last month.
We’re nicely drawn, again towards the middle in stall 11, and he will definitely enjoy the ground if it stays on the soft side of good.
LOOKING FOR REPEAT SUCCESS IN GROUP 3 FEATURE
The Group 3 Virgin Bet Best Odds Daily Firth Of Clyde Stakes (3.00) is a big jump in class for IMPERIALITY but Archie Watson wouldn’t be sending her on the long trip over the border if he didn’t think she could be competitive.
The maiden she won at Hamilton Park in July was on soft ground, which seems to be the key to the daughter of Declaration Of War. She comes into the race fresh and open to improvement.
I actually won this two years ago for Archie and my boss Imad Alsagar on Nazanin so a repeat success with a similarly unexposed filly would be very satisfying.
REVICH OUT FOR REPEAT SUCCESS
Middleham Park Racing’s reliable gelding REVICH won the Virgin Bet daily Price Boosts Handicap (1.15) two years ago and should make a bold bid to repeat the feat.
Richard Spencer’s seven-year-old is high enough in the handicap in this 1m contest but continues to run well as he showed when winning at Chester in May on soft ground.
There was nothing wrong with his placed effort back there earlier this month when he stayed on with some purpose over a slightly shorter trip.
EYE ON VICTORY IN AYR NURSERY
It’ll be nice to ride for home-based trainer Iain Jardine in the Jordan Electrics EBF Nursery Handicap (4.10).
Well-bred Expert Eye colt ELEMENTAL EYE , who is out of a Group 2 winner, makes his debut at this level after showing promise in maiden and novice company at both Hamilton and at this track.
He was sent off favourite last time on his first try at 1m but didn’t get the clearest of runs in a race that looked better than average. Starting off on a lowly mark of 71, I expect him to go well.
GROUP 1 ASSIGNMENT IN GERMANY
I fly out to Germany on Sunday for three rides at Cologne, including Jessie Harrington’s filly TREVAUNANCE in the 61st Preis von Europa (3.35).
Moyglare Stud Farms’ daughter of Muhaarar deserves to take her chance in the 1m4f Group 1 after returning to form in Pattern company in the Blandford Stakes at the Irish Champions Festival.
She won two Group races in France in August last year so is probably one of those fillies who comes into her own later in the year. The forecast good ground will be fine for her and I think she’ll enjoy stepping up in distance.
The Godolphin pair Siskany and Live Your Dream should play a leading role. Will Buick rides the former, the Belmont Gold Cup winner, for Charlie Appleby while Oisin Murphy travels over for Saeed Bin Suroor’s Ebor third.
GEOLOGIST OUT FOR BLACK TYPE
Amy Murphy has excelled with her overseas runners so I’m happy to get the call up for GEOLOGIST in the Listed Winterkonigin Trial.
The turning 7.5f trip should suit the Territories juvenile who ran well over a slightly shorter trip in a Group 3 at Deauville in July.
I also ride Amy’s KAPPARIS KID in the one-mile maiden. He may have been too keen for his own good on debut at Leicester but can hopefully leave that run well behind on only his second career start.
TRUESHAN FIGHTING FIT AFTER DONCASTER WIN
I checked up on my Doncaster Cup hero TRUESHAN the other day and his proud trainer Alan King reports him in fine fettle following his stirring comeback win.
He’s clearly back to his brilliant best following wind surgery and the Group 1 Qatar Prix du Cadran over 2m4f on Arc weekend is now on the agenda.
It’s a race he won two years ago, of course, when he beat his great rival Stradivarius, and if he gets his ground at ParisLongchamp a follow up could certainly be on the cards.
We also have the option of returning to Ascot on British Champions Day in October, live on Sky Sports Racing, in a bid for a fourth Long Distance Cup, so plans remain very much open.
Hollie Doyle was speaking to Sky Sports Racing’s Simon Mapletoft.