7-1 WINNER AS LUCK IS A LADY FOR DAQMAN: Daqman secured 13 points profit on the day yesterday with two hits in Betdaq-sponsored races at Kempton Park last night: Lady Mango (WON 7-1) and Hoodna (WON 2-1).

14.0 AND 20.0 ‘CHANCERS’ AT MEETING FOR OUTSIDERS: The first day of the Newmarket July Cup card has produced results up to 40-1 over the years so, alongside the obvious, Daqman has searched out 20.0, 14.0 and 9.4 live ‘chancers.’

1.20 Newmarket (Bahrain Trophy): For six years in a row the winner has come from a run in the Derby or at Royal Ascot and three of them were subsequently in the frame in the St Leger (one winner).

The two qualifiers are Rewarded, running on third in a Group-3 (1m 2f) at Ascot, and Yazdi, who faded out of contention to finish seventh in the Queens Vase (2m).

Previous winners, Corsica (2010) and Donegal (2008), finished fourth and eighth in the Queen’s Vase.

The placed horses behind Shantaram at Newmarket (1m 4f) have failed to win their maidens, and Valiant beat only losing handicappers at York.

Both are entitled to improve and Valiant’s form is represented in top events later in the day, but Yazdi, who ‘walked’ his maiden by seven lengths before Ascot (led three out), is big value at 9.4 on BETDAQ this morning.

1.50 Newmarket (July Stakes): Five winners in a row had all scored last time out on grade-1 tracks: Ascot, Newmarket, Newbury.

Heavy Metal won at Newmarket and was just edged out by Chilworth Icon at Epsom, though was then well adrift (11th) of Sir Prancealot (fourth) in the Coventry. Sir Prancealot had been impressive in the National Stakes at Sandown.

Gale Force Ten ran second in the Coventry, from which there have been wins for the fourth and 10th home since (but one loser). He doesn’t want any more rain.

Ahern had no sort of run in the Coventry, eventually finishing a couple of lengths behind Gale Force Ten. You have to decide: does the run of Ahern – a Musselburgh winner – enhance the Coventry form or demote it? In fact, the Edinburgh contest, won in the past by Frederick Engels, has been quite a useful form guide.

Meanwhile, also at the royal meeting, Richard Hannon’s Alhebayeb was runner-up in the Windsor Castle: though the fourth and fifth have been beaten since, the seventh horse home had earlier got close to Chilworth Icon.

Richard Hughes prefers the Hannon favourite, Sir Prancealot, and so do I but I’d like to hear that the ground has continued to dry out

I will need to have a saver on Gale Force Ten: Ballydoyle has attempted this race only once before, and won it (2005). I can’t crib Ahern but it’s not often – if at all – that a David Barron has beaten BOTH a Hannon and an O’Brien in such a valuable contest. Handicap maybe; stakes race, no.

2.25 Newmarket: A very hard race for favourites to win, with scorers up to 40-1 and just one market leader at SP. taking the prize in the last decade. Three of the last five had run at Royal Ascot.

Earlier races on the card should tell us something about where the jockeys think the best ground is. An inside draw might help: last year’s winner came from stall 3 but, in fact, they raced down the middle.

Fennell Bay is the only Mark Johnston horse ‘doing a Johnston’ this season: racing in front or in touch and showing superior fitness and courage. Doesn’t seem to mind whether it’s eight or 12 furlongs. Today it’s 10.

In theory, Pilgrim’s Rest can run him close on the weights turnaround after Ascot and losers at the royal meeting have a better record in this than winners.

But you’d normally need a lightly-raced sort to overtake those who’ve got it in the book, as developing three-year-olds outrun the form at this crucial stage of the season.

Another Johnston runner, Hajras, was second in the Newbury race in which last year’s winner of this, Fulgur, finished third.

On a line through Black Mascara, Nabucco is ‘the same horse’ to within a pound of stablemate Shantaram, who runs in the first, so are we in for another Gosden rout? Or will Shantaram show us that Nabucco is a false favourite.

Should Valiant, not Shantaram, win the first, he gives boosts to Silver Blaze, who ran up to him at York, and Stature, a length behind him at Newbury.

In fact, there are half a dozen horses with five runs or less on their CVs that could still be ‘anything’, among them six-lengths Newmarket winner, Greek War (hit for a stone rise by the handicapper), and stablemate Samba King, who was given no sort of a ride behind Fennel Bay at Ascot (1m 4f) but finished in front of him earlier at Newmarket (1m 2f).

Ghost Protocol didn’t do much for the Trader Jack form when a long way adrift of Fennell Bay at Ascot.

It’s wide open. I’ll take the Ascot form and Pilgrim’s Rest, who faded only close him over 1m 4f behind Fennell Bay, and is too big at 14.0 on BETDAQ as I write, with Nabucco too short but greatly feared.

3.00 Newmarket: Not a winning favourite in sight in nine years, but Jakkalberry, Fiorente and Quest of Peace (some interference) all failed to get to Red Cadeaux when he was third at Royal Ascot.

Dandino represents the winner of that Ascot race, Sea Moon, on their Goodwood one-two but his best form has come on firm ground.

On a line through Harris Tweed, Modun would give Red Cadeaux a fright but would also seemingly need top of the ground to do so.

My ‘chancer’ is Sea Of Heartbreak, 20.0 on BETDAQ as I write. Saved up for this, with just one run back after aiming high at the Woodbine International last season, having won a Group 2 at Longchamp. The rain must stay away.

BET 2.3pts win YAZDI and 1.5pts (stakes saver) VALIANT (1.20 Newmarket)
BET 8.8pts win SIR PRANCEALOT and 3.2pts win (stakes saver) GALE FORCE TEN (1.50 Newmarket)
WIN-30 JACKPOT: 7.8pts win NABUCCO and 2.3pts win PILGRIM’S REST (2.25 Newmarket)
BET 8.3pts win (nap) RED CADEAUX, and 1pt win and place SEA OF HEARTBREAK (3.00 Newmarket)

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