Well the first classic of the season didn’t disappoint as Churchill showed his class as predicted in his 2000 Guineas preview by our own Graham Richards, but in behind Barney Roy certainly didn’t disgrace himself and is one to keep onside for the remainder of the season. Dream Castle didn’t get the best of runs at all and you can’t say that he didn’t stay the mile, I’m going to be keeping a very close eye on him this year as he clearly has bundles of ability and I think he’ll win his fair share of races.
Today it’s the fillies turn and we’ll see if Aidan O’Brien can claim the second classic of the season as well as the first. The Dahlia Stakes is before that at 2:20 and once again there is a Ballydoyle inmate at the head of the market.
Very much hitting the bar so far this year, this step back up in trip will be sure to suit William Haggas’ Muffri’Ha after just losing out over 7 furlongs on Good Friday. She ended last season well with a hat-trick of wins, one of which came in a Group 3 over course and distance. A trip to Dubai at the start of the year showed how consistent she is as she racked up a hat-trick of thirds in Group company. This 9 furlongs should be right up her street and the quick ground won’t pose any problems, it would be no surprise if she were to win this.
Roger Varian has had a superb start to the season and he saddles Nezwaah. She won three times last season and one of those was a Listed race by a comfortable three lengths, the concern about those wins would be that they were all on the all weather. Her turf form is by no means bad though, she ran well at Newbury and that form looks good as the winner We Are Ninety ran well in the Ribblesdale and the fourth Queen’s Trust got her head in front at the Breeders Cup. In September Nezwaah pushed So Mi Dar close at Yarmouth and we know how good that one is.
Somehow has perhaps been a bit unlucky in as much as she is in the same generation as her stablemates Minding and Seventh Heaven so has had to take a bit of a back seat. But in her own right Somehow is a very good horse, she started off her three year old campaign well with a couple of wins but found herself a little bit out of her depth in the English and Irish Oaks before bouncing back in emphatic style in a Group 3 at the Curragh where she bolted up by seven lengths. That race was probably the fastest surface she has encountered and personally I don’t think the quick ground will pose any problems for here.
Aljazzi won nicely on reappearance for Marco Botti at Kempton but was a bit hit and miss last season, but she did win here on debut and I wouldn’t rule her out but I expect others to be a bit better. Skiffle went into the Oaks last season as second favourite with just the two runs under her belt but ultimately disappointed. The quick ground shouldn’t be an issue but she has plenty to find with Somehow and will need to have massively improved over the winter.
Silver Step wasn’t far behind Muffri’Ha on two occasions in Dubai and wouldn’t need to find much improvement to get the better of that rival here, she may find the desired extra from this quicker ground and the booking of James Doyle is a plus.
A stiffer test would be more suitable for Elbereth but the ground should be fine. Aim To Please would be better suited to a bit of cut in the ground and along with Rosental has a bit to find to be involved.
Somehow to win 5/2
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