Only one winner in the last ten years has been older than three years old though that did occur last year with Roger Varian’s Spangled, ironically in the same colours as fancied four year old, Eternally. A free going type, Eternally will not get her own way up front and needs to find more to win this. The 4/1 does not look value. There is a similar price about Talaayeb, winner of a competitive City Of York Stakes but she only just held on and did not run up to her Guineas form when fourth to Winter in May. Music Box has been running well but is a little exposed now while Unforgettable Filly has performed admirably this summer and though we haven’t seen her since June, she is maybe a little big @ 10/1. Roger Varian has taken this race the last twice and could well make it three in a row with the steadily improving Tomyris. She stayed on well over a sharp seven furlongs at Goodwood behind Al Jazi and Eternally with this galloping track, along with a good pace, likely playing to her strengths making the 13/2 tempting.
This does look a two horse race with Pursuing The Dream unlikely to have enough improvement to trouble Havana Grey and Heartache. Heartache, with Ryan Moore booked, was impressive at Royal Ascot and though that form is not the strongest, was a little unlucky in France last time. Havana Grey meanwhile, has been top class over five furlongs on differing ground, only losing out last time in the Prix Morny over an extra furlong. May Girl makes a quick turnaround after winning a novice race at York and could be value for a place bet.
Little or no pace on here which should allow Time To Study to dictate things and in a typical Mark Johnston trained style, will take some passing @ 7/2. Byron Flyer aided by cheekpieces should be ideally placed to make a move, with the drop back in trip likely to suit and should be challenging @ 4/1. Pengali Pavillion ran a cracker on his first start on these shores since 2016 behind Magic Circle at York and if going for home earlier, could be the value @ 13/2. The dreaded ‘bounce factor’ has to be taken into account following such a good effort after a break and may struggle to repeat the form. Elidor, Shrewd, Seamour and Lord George will have to attempt to quicken off a slow pace and may just get caught on heels when the action unfolds.
Previous winners Sheikhzayedroad and Pallasator have not been at their best this year, Sheikhzayedroad showed a little more last time at York while Pallasator is now fitted with cheekpieces and Rosie Jessop takes the mount, his regular rider at home, she will attempt to get the best out of this quirky son of Motivator. Desert Skyline has performed well since trying staying trips but this race is tough for a three year old and it will take a mighty effort to win this. Montaly deserves respect but will have to defy the penalty for a surprise win in the Lonsdale Cup at York and will need High Jinx to set a strong pace once again. Ryan Moore rode Thomas Hobson brilliantly at Royal Ascot, holding onto him as long as possible and if ridden like that again may well be worth a bet @ 11/2.
Quickened Clear’s Best Bet
Thomas Hobson – 3.35 Doncaster – 1pt win @ 11/2
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