Newmarket July Festival 2018 – Day 1 Preview and Tips

Bahrain Trophy Stakes (Group 3) (Class 1) (3yo) (1.50) (1m5f): This is a tightly contested renewal of the Bahrain Trophy with all the field having a chance. Godolphin’s golden summer could continue here as they have three with realistic chances but Wolf Country could be the one. A twice raced juvenile, he improved greatly from the benefit of his debut when winning well at Yarmouth next time out and really relished the step up to 12 furlongs when he was a taking winner of the Prix de L’Avre. He was then sent to the Dante when he attempted to run the finish out of the field but he just did too much too soon there; That form now reads very strongly though and he ought to go nicely here.

Advice: 1.5 pts each/way Wolf Country (7/1 Hills)

Arqana July Stakes (Group 2) (Colts & Geldings) (2yo) (2.25): Rajasinghe sets a strong standard on his Coventry win and should take the beating here even under a penalty. An impressive winner at Newcastle on his debut, he gave his all to hold off Headway, Murillo and Brother Bear by a head and two necks, with the form already being boosted.

Murillo and De Bryune Horse, fourth and eighth then, were third and fourth in the Railway whilst three horses have won since, including US Navy Flag who represents Ballydoyle here, and it is shaping up as if the Coventry this year might set the standard early against the two year olds. He dominates the market, so there is plenty of each/way value.

Denaar was a disappointment at Ascot but perhaps he’d overraced early in what was a well-run race and and this less firm surface could also suit him as Frankie Dettori returns to take the mount. Before that his attitude had impressed and it’s notable that Richard Hannon tries again here.

Sound and Silence showed that his National Stakes fourth wasn’t his true form by winning the Windsor Castle and he has to be respected here. The runner up Roussel was second in a Listed event at Sandown and he probably needs to improve a bit again. Cardsharp achieved more when he was third in the Norfolk (ahead of It Don’t Come Easy) but that was another fine effort at five furlongs and on his one try tackling six, he was outstayed by De Bruyne horse in the Woodcote there. He is an each/way contender still.

Invincible Army was narrowly touched off on debut by the Chesham third Masar, and then broke his duck in very impressive fashion over course and distance. The fourth from that race has won well since and he ought to be seriously involved here.

Hey Gaman was touched off on debut but found pattern company too much at Ascot when inexperience perhaps got the better of him, so it’s not a surprise that he’d improved a good amount when winning at Yarmouth a week ago. That said, this might be too much too soon still. Enjazaat was all at sea on debut at Newbury but he was a different horse when he flew home at Yarmouth when much better was expected from the Owen Burrows yard.

Alba Power was beaten in what is a very good maiden on debut, and can be forgiven for that. She fought very yard at Yarmouth to get off the mark. He’s interesting here if he can take another step forward whilst Roland Rocks needs to improve. Grand Koonta could improve again now he’s off the mark although he is rated just 83.

Advice: 1 pt win Rajasinghe (2/1 general)

bet365 Handicap (Class 2)(3yo 0-105) (6f) (3.00): Any amount of realistic contenders here but Golden Apollo’s recent improvement for coming back to 6 furlongs might not be over and a repeat of his big win in a York handicap where Poet’s Society was fourth and Ekhityaar was fifth will probably see him run a very bold race once again. It could also pay to give another chance to Hyde Park, who made a good start to life handicapping when third in a very well contested Goodwood handicap that produced the winner of the Britannia. He lost second in the last strides there but a well-run six furlongs could bring out the best in him and he might be value. Cartographer also ought to go very close.

Advice: 1 pt each/way Golden Apollo (9/1 general), 1 pt each/way Hyde Park (16/1 general)

Princess Of Wales’s Arqana Racing Club Stakes (Group 2) ( 3.35): Frontiersman ran a huge race to get as close as he did to Highland Reel when he hated Epsom and with the six time Group 1 winner not here, he should take a great deal of beating. A deeply impressive winner of a handicap on the Rowley Mile before that, the application of cheekpieces might help him be less wayward and the form of both those runs will give him a very competitive shout.

Poet’s Word was beaten just a neck in the Huxley, form boosted by the good run of Deauville in the Queen Anne at Ascot over a mile. Wings Of Desire ought to be better than his reappearance in the Hardwicke, and the Derby fourth and King George second of last year ought to be heavily involved too. Hawkbill was third in the Coronation Cup but didn’t quite follow that up in the Grand Prix De Paris and will need to race with restraint this time around. Alogmeter ought to be much happier back over this trip after a fine reappearance at Sandown and could outrun his odds. Muntahaa hasn’t followed up his John Porter win and Western Hymn was well held in the Hardwicke.

Advice: 3 pts win Frontiersman (13/8 general)

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British Stallion Studs EBF Maiden Fillies’ Stakes (Plus 10 Race) (2yo) (4.05): Horses with experience can be vulnerable at this meeting so Maybride and Fabulous Red will need to bring their best as there are plenty of likely types and the market will show a lot.

Advice: No bet.

John Deere Handicap (Class 2) (4.35): Tight between several. Perhaps Jumira Bridge is just in the grip of the handicapper after two wins and Amomentofmadness could take advantage, although Compas Soccobi and Ice Age won’t be far behind. Not many of these made appeal.

Advice: No bet.

Robinsons Mercedes-Benz Sir Henry Cecil Stakes (5.05): A tight affair to end the day. The Brittannia form is well represented with the possibly unlucky Ronald R attempting Listed company once again whilst he faces Tricorn, third that day, off worse terms and the pair should be heavily involved. Larchmont Lad, beaten a head when giving a penalty, took the Somerville Stakes at the end of last season and had struggled in better races.

Beat The Bank found the Jersey Stakes too much but this could be more suitable and the same has to be said of Forest Ranger, who was an impressive winner of a conditions event at Newcastle when he had the Acomb Stakes winner of last year, Syphax.

D’bai is of interest for Godolphin. The Silver Tankard Stakes winner of last year had Forest Ranger behind there and on his return he was second to the progressive Trais Flours in the Prix de Pontarme. The winner would go onto follow up in the Paul Moussac before finishing second to Thunder Snow in the Jean Prat and that is some of the best form in the race. He looks overpriced here after the Prix-Du Jockey Club was too much.

Advice: 1 pt each/way D’bai (9/1 general)