Swindler Could Be Slick Across The Soil This Weekend6 min read
The King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes is one of the highlights of the flat season and we have a real clash of the generations today with Derby winner Anthony Van Dyck taking on at least two outstanding older horses in Crystal Ocean and the brilliant mare Enable who will bid for an unprecedented hat-trick of Arc successes at Longchamp in October.
Enable looked as good as ever when taking the Eclipse Stakes at Sandown on her reappearance while Crystal Ocean was a fluent winner of the Prince Of Wales’s Stakes on soft ground last time. Both those wins were gained over 10f, but today’s additional quarter-mile holds no terrors for either of the market leaders with Enable 4/7 and Crystal Ocean 11/4.
I hope I am not tilting at windmills, but I remain convinced that French raider Waldgeist (3.40) is overpriced at 20/1 with BetVictor and he gets the each way vote. The soft ground was against Andre Fabre’s five-year-old at Royal Ascot last time and he is best judged on his close fourth in the Arc back in the autumn behind Enable when he didn’t get the clearest of passages.
I will be disappointed if he doesn’t run a big race – although he does need good or fast ground to be seen at his best. The selection is drawn in stall four whereas Enable is out on the wing in stall 11.
In the opening Princess Margaret Stakes, I hope to see Summer Romance (1.50) maintain her unbeaten record for Charlie Appleby. The filly has landed the odds on both starts including a 6L romp in listed company on the July course last time. The Godolphin juvenile is Evens to land her hat-trick and 10/1 market leader for the 2020 1000 Guineas and I would be disappointed if she lost her unbeaten record this afternoon.
In the Mile Handicap for three-year-olds, I hope to see Sash (2.25) follow up his recent Windsor Handicap success from a 7lbs higher mark. Hayley Turner has been booked to ride Amanda Perrett’s colt who is set to carry just 8st 4lbs. The selection is 8/1 and is the each way recommendation with the dead eight going to post.
Arbalet (3.00) finished runner up in the 7f £150,000 Moet & Chandon International Handicap 12 months ago and is taken to go one better this afternoon for Hugo Palmer’s four-year-old who looks to have been laid out for this valuable prize. James Doyle has been booked for the ride and the grey colt from race off a mark 3lbs lower today than was the case in 2018. The selection is 10/1 and is another each way recommendation with BetVictor betting five places on the race.
Andrew Balding’s three-year-old Lariat (5.20) has finished second on all four starts so far this season but he certainly deserves to get his head in front and ran as well ever when runner up at Chester last time. Kiefer is another from the classic generation to consider for Eve Johnson Houghton but Lariat gets the nod.
Summer Romance (1.50)
Sash (2.25) Each Way
Arbalet (3.00) Each Way
Waldgeist (3.40) Each Way
In the Sky Bet York Stakes at York – where else – I am sweet on the chances of Bangkok (3.15) who disappointed in the Derby on his penultimate start but who ran a very good race at Royal Ascot when runner up to Aidan O’Brien’s Japan, giving the impression he would be well served by a return to today’s 10f trip. The selection is 4/1.
Swindler (4.00) has been raised 8lbs for a fluent win at Ascot on his reappearance – his first start since being gelded. He was a juvenile who I thought had tons of ability last season – and was often backed accordingly – but he looked a different animal last time and if the ground remains on the quick side he will take lots of beating in the 3-y-old sprint handicap at Newmarket.