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Over 180 sprinters stood their ground at the five-day stage for Saturday’s Ayr Gold Cup including Shanghai Glory who was cut from 12s to 10/1 favourite at BetVictor for the valuable and prestigious handicap.
Ekhtiyaar and Scorching Heat are next in the market at 14/1 and the former would have every chance although he is not guaranteed to get a run when the declarations are revealed on Thursday morning.
The ground is given as soft at Yarmouth for today’s seven-race card although it might be quite tacky and testing with no further rain expected. Mashaheer was been well backed on both starts to date but it is perhaps significant that the owner’s retained jockey Jim Crowley favours Mutaaqeb (2.00) in the opener for Owen Burrows.
The selection holds no fancy end-of-season entries but is well-bred and connections look to have found a decent opening for his racecourse debut.
Crowley gets the leg up on Opinionate in the feature event the valuable mile-and-a-half handicap for three-year-olds. Only five go to post but the quintet have won eleven of their twenty-six career starts with the unbeaten High End (3.05) looking to make it four out of four for Godolphin.
The selection is stepping up in trip a couple of furlongs but gives the impression he will appreciate the extra distance given he certainly wasn’t stopping at Epsom last time. The gelded son of Dubawi has gone off market leader on all three starts and he is taken to justify favouritism today although he will have to improve again.
Broughtons Admiral (3.40) was a beaten odds on favourite at Brighton last week but he might have run into a well-handicapped rival in the shape of Sir Mark Prescott’s Send Up. The third horse home on that occasion was over six lengths away and the selection can race from the same mark this afternoon. The gelding can race from the same mark this afternoon and must go close although his draw in stall 13 of 13 is a concern.
Perfect Sense will appreciate stepping down in trip having failed to see out the mile last time, but the once-raced filly One Master (4.10) ran an eye-catching race on debut, and is taken to score for William Haggas. Ryan Moore takes over in the saddle and connections will be keen to get a win under her belt for breeding purposes.
Jamie Spencer goes to Newcastle for just the one ride on Encryption (7.10) and George Scott is a trainer I have plenty of time for. The market will obviously give us valuable clues as to his ability and expectations but those with experience only set a fair standard – the early price I have seen is 14/1 with BetVictor.
Express Lady (9.10) was too keen at Lingfield last time to do herself justice and trainer Hugo Palmer fits the filly with both a tongue-tie and cheekpieces this evening. The filly won her first start under Josephine Gordon and she is back in the plate tonight.
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