Toormore can go one better in renewal at Newbury
The Lockinge is the feature event at Newbury and the ground is drying out all the time; at the time of writing the ground is soft (good to soft places) and it could easily ride good to soft by the time the 13-milers go to post for the Group 1 contest.
Kodi Bear can pull hard and has a tendency to hang to his left; it will be interesting to see if regular pilot Gerald Mosse allows the four-year-old to drift to the far rail from his draw in stall three. He is likely to be quite free first time out, however, and I just favour the chances of Toormore (3.55) who made a winning reappearance despite giving 3lbs to his six rivals at Sandown last month.
The selection finished runner up in this corresponding race 12 months ago (Arod third and held) and is a genuine Group 1 animal. He finished behind Limato at Longchamp on Arc Day but the forecast holding ground is a concern for the Henry Candy gelding who has been declared for the race but connections might wait for Royal Ascot. Toormore heads the betting at 4/1 with BetVictor and he looks primed to run a big race.
Hannon saddles Mehmas (2.10) in the opener and the juvenile looked a decent sort when scoring at Chester on debut under Frankie Dettori when the further he went the better he looked.
He is taken on by six other winners in the best two-year-old race seen in Britain to date including Newmarket winner Global Applause who is a massive danger from the stable of Ed Dunlop whose string are in such cracking form.
Wings Of Desire is the new Derby favourite (3/1 at BetVictor) after his win in the Dante and his older half-brother Eagle Top (2.45) can get back to winning ways with the juice in the ground in the Aston Stakes.
The selection went down by a nose to Postponed in the King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot back in June and he will be hard to beat if anywhere near that level of form. The five-year-old is 5/1 at BetVictor for next month’s Coronation Cup at Ascot and he is 5/6 for this afternoon’s Group 3 contest.
The London Gold Cup is a terrific race and my two against the field are Soldier In Action and Irish raider Spader (4.30) with preference for the latter who made all at Navan on his reappearance for Ger Lyons, clearly handles ground with plenty of cut in it and it will be interesting to see if connections try and make all. At 9/1 with BetVictor he can reward each way support.
Fast ground is the order of the day at Newmarket and that will certainly suit Rauccous (3.35) more than the surface he raced on (good to soft) on his reappearance when trainer William Haggas wasn’t convinced his colt would act on the ground, despite having won on soft ground back in July. He has the opportunity to prove that running all wrong.
At Bangor-On-Dee, Monsieur Gibraltar (2.30) was highly regarded by Paul Nicholls 12 months ago and, whilst he never hit the heights expected over timber, he made an encouraging chase debut when runner up at Kempton and can go one better for the champion trainer.
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