DETTORI KING OF ASCOT AGAIN: On a day of winners at 9-1, 22-1, 25-1 and 40-1 yesterday, punters had only one reason to raise the roof on British Champions Day: Frankie Dettori. He was king of Ascot once again with two superb rides on Trawlerman and King Of Steel.
HUNT ON FOR CLASSIC WINNERS: What do the Ascot results mean for next season? Which two-year-olds will take top spot? Those marked down last year for 2023 stardom in Daqman’s top ratings had three Classic winners in his first three.
TODAY: Two-year-old tests in France
BALLYDOYLE IMPOSES L.A. LAW
⭕ 12.58 Criterium de Saint-Cloud (2-y-o, 1m 2f, soft) A tempting £126k winners prize, taken by English raiders for the last three years, none of them favourite.
It’s a race you must watch. It will enable you to rate a dozen two-year-olds.
The sole starter from England today is Bracken’s Laugh, who beat three previous winners on debut at Newbury (soft) in September.
Aidan O’Brien is fielding impressive Tipperary winner Los Angeles (by Camelot) and a Galileo called Illinois, a big-field maiden winner at the Curragh 15 days back.
Aidan may not have wanted his prominent juveniles to reveal so many rungs of the ladder at Ballydoyle but the choice is made for him, taken on by his son, Joseph’s, Islandsinthestream, not for the first time.
Joseph has run the Wootton Bassett colt against Aidan’s Henry Longfellow twice (second both times, including in the Futurity at the Curragh).
What will also help us decide the Ballydoyle batting order is the collateral form of Bracken’s Laugh.
I’ll bet Los Angeles, around 6-1 this morning. cops the headlines from English, Irish and home defenders.
ALCANTOR ST-CLOUD SUNSHINE
⭕ 1.33 Saint-Cloud (Criterium International, 2-y-o 1m) This has gone to raiders from England and Ireland seven years out of nine.
Aidan O’Brien, who has won it with Van Gogh and Johannes Vermeer, steps up Navy Seal to Group 1, despite his Group-2 defeat at the Curragh the last day.
As with Illinois and Los Angeles, he has Ryan Moore on Navy Seal as seeming first string, and Christophe Soumillion partners Portland.
Portland brings today’s Saint-Cloud juvenile tests together, since he was third at the Curragh, three lengths behind Islandsintestream in the Futurity won by Henry Longfellow.
Sunway (David de Menuisier) adds Champagne Stakes form to the mix; he was second to Iberian. But Iberian was earlier beaten by Haatem at Goodwood and both Iberian and Hatem were eight lengths and more down at the finish of the Dewhurst.
But the race that holds the strongest pointer may be Alcantor’s easy defeat of Saganti in the Prix Thomas Bryon here at Saint-Cloud (soft) in September, with Havana Cigar third.
MARS BAR THE GOFFER REVIVAL
⭕ 4.15 Limerick (Munster National) I’ve treasured this race for guiding me to follow Tiger Roll, its 20-1 winner in 2016, and I’ve won it again since at 16-1. Watch me score today with Gordon Elliott’s selected!
That’s no good to anyone, is it, because the master of Longwood has EIGHT of the 12 declared, spoiling it as a betting medium.
Those who follow the market, good luck, but you had the lesson yet again yesterday when the Gosden outsider of two won at Ascot.
I could be labeled (libeled?) a stats addict for this, but what I can say is that six and seven are usually the winning ages (8 out of 10), which narrows me down to four.
The penny has dropped with Mars Harper. He is up only 8lb for back-to-back wins (the last one here at Limerick) and the step up in trip is warranted, according to his pedigree.
Stable-companion The Goffer, last season’s Leopardstown Chase winner was staying on, fifth, in the Kerry National the last day (A Wave Of The Sea behind, after jumping poorly; Gevrey bad mistake, pulled up).
Betdaq Betting Exchange 5.9 The Goffer, 8.4 Mars Harper
CHAMPION HURDLER DROPS IN
⭕ 4.05 Kempton Sceau Royal goes for a hat-trick in this race but is unlikely to be so sprightly now aged 11.
I prefer Paul Nicholls’ Rubaud.The Scottish Champion Hurdle winner has his ground, down two grades here.
He won first time out a year ago and made it four out of six with a Grade-2 double in the Spring. A big future on good ground, yet second in the market here; ask for 3.5 even 4.0.
12.58 Saint-Cloud (win 12)
BET 2pts win LOS ANGELES
1.33 Saint-Cloud (win 12)
BET 12pts win ALCANTOR
4.05 Kempton (win 25 nap)
BET 10pts win RUBAUD
4.15 Limerick (win 30, win 20)
BET 4pts win MARS HARPER
BET 4pts win THE GOFFER
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