HENRY CECIL NAPPED FOR ANOTHER BIG ONE: Daqman goes nap on Henry Cecil for another Group 1 today. This is a nap at a short price that demands maximum stakes, so he declares a banker. However, there was 9.8, 9.2 and 4.3 available at Betdaq value on his selections for the two other races at Deauville today.
1.30 Deauville (Prix Kergorlay): This race has produced champion English stayers: Kayf Tara before his Irish St Leger and, the following year, Ascot Gold Cup; Persian Punch before his Goodwood Cups.
Kasbah Bliss, an old warhorse who goes back to Kayf Tara’s day, and has run over hurdles against horses of the calibre of Big Buck’s, takes in the Kergorlay for the first time today.
He should hold Gentoo, whom he beat at St Cloud in the Spring, but has finished behind too many of these – Brigantin, Manighar, Dunaden, Ley Hunter and Tres Rock Danon – to merit a bet, even at a price (even at a Pricewise).
The ground at Deauville will be fast on a sunny seaside day in Normandy and, while he runs well on top these days, his winningmost form is with cut (2009-11 figures on good or firmer 0312322003; on ground with ‘soft’ in the going return 1403100), as you would imagine with a horse getting on in years and losing his pace.
Manighar, beaten a short neck by Americain in this race last year, with Tres Rock Danon fifth, enjoys a 6lb turnaround at the weights, and also enough to swap places with the same horse on their third and fourth in the Ascot Gold Cup (Kasbah Bliss behind).
The snag with Manighar is that he’s often flatterered at this level, a bit one paced (8th in the Goodwood Cup, Red Cadeaux 10th) and all his winning form was in lower grades in 2009.
What I think you need today– it’s patently obvious really – is a horse that can go with the pace round this tight frying-pan track and quicken off the top of the ground.
The answer may be Dunaden, 9.8 on Betdaq at the time he was being listed 5-1 with Ladbrokes in the Racing Post. He was apprentice ridden when he beat Kasbah Bliss, Brigantin and Americain in the Spring, and showed that was no fluke when he failed narrowly, under a bit of pilot error this time, to catch Brigantin at Longchamp a month later, again showing the ability to quicken off a pace.
Off the course since then, but reported back on song, and with Johnny Murtagh booked, consistency is Dunaden’s forte (form in the last year is 22112312).
The danger must be Americain (4.3, as I write). Those who warn that it’s getting close to the Melbourne Cup, which he won last year, should note that he won this race and his so-called warm-up in Australia before the Cup victory. His form figures on good ground in the last year are 11301 and his career form at Deauville is 32111.
2.40 Deauville (Prix Morny): English and Irish stables have won this 14 out of the last 17 years since 1994, and are currently on six in a row.
Mick Channon, who trains Gatepost, has won it before (2005) but there could be a new name on the roll of honour for this race we like to call our own, Yorkshire’s David Brown.
His Iceman colt, Frederick Engels, has just had his credentials boosted by the success of his gallops companion Doncaster Rover and in the Gimcrack during York week by Caspar Netscher, who was only third in ‘Fred’s’ Windsor Castle Stakes at Royal Ascot.
‘Fred’ blipped in the prestigious Phoenix Stakes at The Curragh but, since the horses in front of him included Lilbourne Lad who was beaten by Caspar Netscher at York, he probably had an off day after travelling to Ireland.
Today, then, is his second try at Group 1. It’s first time at the top level for the ultra-smooth Robert Papin (Group 2) winner, Family One, and it’s a first run in the Pattern for Sofast.
Obviously, any one of these can improve at this stage – particularly those lightly raced – and, collaterally, there is mixed evidence to date about the relative merits of Frederick Engels and Family One.
Bapak Chinta, who beat Frederick Engels three lengths at Hamilton in May, went on to beat Boomerang Bob a length, followed by Crown Dependency and Burwazz, in the Norfolk Stakes (Pyman’s Theory ninth).
But Boomerang Bob was beaten a cosy two lengths by Family One in the Prix Du Bois last month (Pyman’s Theory a well-held third, getting weight). Burwazz was third in the Gimcrack but Crown Dependency flopped in a big-field sales-type race.
Frankie Dettori has been booked for Dabirism but the word from Deauville is for Sofast, leaping straight in to the big time from his maiden but highly regarded by Freddie Head.
Sofast (9.2 as I write) is likely to be easy to back with English bookmakers and exchanges, with Frederick Engels, Family One, Dabirism and Vladimir boasting 13 wins between them.
He may be found out for experience but seems one to follow, so you shouldn’t miss out on the big odds now; he might never be this price again, and looks sure to repay any losses at a future date.
3.10 Deauville (Prix Jean Romanet): Timepiece would be another flower in the replanting of Henry Cecil’s winners garden which first bloomed in the 1970s.
The Newmarket rosegrower’s resurgence has reached new heights in this year of Frankel, and Timepiece is the good-ground horse with the 2011 victory at Group-1 level (beat Lily Of The Valley who, in turn, holds Fleur Enchantee).
Announce has won on top of the ground but is Group 3 on his win form. Divine Music is a handicapper. On that evidence, they should be betting 4-6 Timepiece, 7-4 Announce, anything you like bar two. In fact, you can get better than double-your-money Timepiece on the Daq. Banker.
BET (to win 20pts) 6pts win AMERICAIN and 2.2pts win DUNADEN (1.30 Deauville)
BET 2.4pts win SOFAST and 1pt win (stakes saver) FREDERICK ENGELS (2.40 Deauville)
BANKER: BET 20pts win TIMEPIECE (3.10 Deauville)