It’s Charlie Hall Chase weekend at Wetherby, with Bravemansgame fancied to win the big one although he is too short a price to do so.
With the jumps season getting into full swing now, Ascot also hosts the Bateaux London Gold Cup, but there are still plenty of betting opportunities on the Flat, especially at headquarters where we are betting across Friday and Saturday.
Friday 28th October 2022
1.30 Newmarket (Novice Stakes) – MAJESTIC PRIDE
This is a field full of mostly newcomers, so strong money for any runner should be noted.
Having handled heavy ground and 6½ furlongs well on debut, Physique is rightly well fancied to go one better, but the seven furlongs of the Rowley Mile is a different proposition to Newbury and that run was only seven days ago.
On breeding Burdett Road may fancy this first time up, but even more likely is Charlie Appleby’s Majestic Pride who can be backed to small stakes if there is encouragement and if a price of more than 3/1 holds.
He should relish this test and his trainer so consistently sends these types out to perform to a good level on debut. With William Buick in Australia, James Doyle is left to take over.
2.40 Newmarket (Bosra Sham Fillies’ Stakes – Listed Race) – MATILDA PICOTTE
At this stage of their respective careers, it’s impossible to know exactly what level these two-year-old fillies can reach before the end of the year.
Some don’t have form on rain-softened ground though, some don’t look comfortable on it and some aren’t bred for it either.
None of those things are true of the Irish-trained Matilda Picotte who for me has the best form and is fine in the conditions so is a sound bet to take this race, perhaps ahead of Diamond Vega.
3.35 Saint-Cloud (Prix Solitude – Listed Race) – GOLDEN LYRA
William Haggas is sending one horse over to France on Friday and in fact his Golden Lyra could be very good value to pinch the win.
Tres Queen, Daisy Maisy and Queen Trezy have all shown ability, but only to the level Golden Lyra showed on only her second run and seasonal debut at Newbury back in June. She was favourite for the Listed race won by Haskoy in August, and has been no doubt sent here to get the softer ground she craves.
There is no available betting at the time of writing, though one forecast has her as a 9/2 shot while on another she is 10/1. I expect her to be shorter than that come the off.
3.50 Newmarket (Handicap) – ALLMANKIND
Running on the Flat for the first time since 2019 is the now Dan Skelton-trained Allmankind.
Based on all the information available, most notably how he has improved jumping, we can expect him to be at least 6lbs, maybe many more, ahead of the handicap mark of 86 he has been dropped to on the level. In fact, he reached 90 when running in the Dee Stakes for Michael Bell.
He will be staying on when others are running out of puff in this two-mile contest, while that potential for being well ahead of his mark is not something the others can boast, including second choice Novel Legend.
Saturday 29th October 2022
2.48 Newmarket (Nursery Handicap) – DARTMAN
In this nine-furlong nursery there are a number of seemingly reliable indicators which show is that Forceful Speed, Sir Laurance Graff, Shahbaz, Orchestra and Dawn Vega may be very close at the weights. The one who may yet prove to be the standout however is Dartman.
Brian Meehan’s runner was gelded before his debut and just maybe took his time to get going. After a pretty average debut, he put up a very reasonable performance when third behind Classic over ton the July Course on soft ground back in August.
That run would have earned him a mark in the early 80’s and he will have improved some since then. He gets in here off only 77 having been well beaten on the all-weather last, a run easy to forgive. Back on turf, he could prove to be well handicapped.
3.00 Wetherby (West Yorkshire Hurdle – Grade 2) – PROSCHEMA
Proschema was behind Indefatigable in this race last year but has a big weight turnaround now, while he also has age on his side in that battle.
He also had every chance of beating favourite Sporting John at Cheltenham last season before falling. He’s fit, improving and really should prove to be the best of this bunch.
3.23 Newmarket (Handicap) – KING OF CONQUEST
Godolphin’s six-year-old Ghaly (Saeed bin Suroor) may still be well handicapped, while back on softer ground a good run can be expected from Lawful Command.
The one who may, just may, have tons in hand however is Godolphin’s other runner, the Charlie Appleby-trained King Of Conquest.
After making a very nice debut last August he was sent off favourite to beat the likes of Zechariah and Westover. He wasn’t at his best in the end, finishing third, while things also went wrong in Dubai but he has now been gelded and waited with.
He’s ready to go again and no doubt a minimum target for him will be to reach triple figures, which he’s very capable of, so coming in off 88 is more than a little tempting.
3.58 Newmarket (Montrose Fillies’ Stakes – Listed Race) – DREAM OF LOVE
This could be another winner for the powerful Charlie Appleby yard courtesy of their Shamardal/Galileo cross Dream Of Love.
She made a very pleasing debut when winning here three weeks ago over seven furlongs, this extra 220 yards looking like being right up her street.
She looked a little green that day yet got the job done against some pretty decent yardsticks, reaching a level just a couple of pounds below Dermot Weld’s Keep In Touch and Clive Cox’s Conservationist with clearly more to come.