7-1 STAR MAKES IT A SUNNY DAY DESPITE THE RAIN: Daqman turned up trumps again with Sunday Star (WON 7-1) last night but it was a devil of a day until that point, as the ground changed with the rain. Today’s showers – sometimes heavy – on good to soft from yesterday could make for testing conditions.

During the week, Daqman reviewed the profit and loss on his main bets:
Daqman 48 Pricewise 23 (Daqman 334 points clear to 10 stakes)
Bull’s-eye naps (6-11) 269 points up to recommended stakes
Supernaps (15-20) 126 points up to 20 point stakes

Newbury officially turned soft this morning; watch out for non-runners
Haydock good to soft; light rain: watch out for non-runners
Market Rasen good but showers
The Curragh good to firm, cloudy



5.10 The Curragh

A Sire’s stamina index 11.1 to 11.9 (seven out of eight)
B First or second on the last day (85%)
C Rated 107 to 120 (60%)
D Won over 1m 4f+ before(60%)
E Ran in The Epsom Oaks 55%
F Trained by Aidan O’Brien, John Gosden (O’Brien 5, Gosden 2)

ABCDF Star Catcher

Sea The Stars filly, best form on the soft, notably Ribblesdale at Royal Ascot, stretching out impressively, reversing earlier 1m 2f form and beating Epsom Oaks third. Supplemented.

ABDEF Peach Tree

In-and-out performer by Galileo; front runner. Stanerra Stakes (1m 6f) success shows how hard she is to beat given an easy lead, but well behind Star Catcher and Fleeting in the Ribblesdale on soft.

AB Search For A Song

Very lightly raced Galileo filly who broke her maiden only at the end of May, but beaten favourite in the Naas Oaks Trial (1m 2f) won by Trethias in late June.

BC Iridessa

Dam’s side potentially gives her stamina and won Group 1 Pretty Polly Stakes at the Curragh (1m 2f) after fourth there in Irish 1,000 Guineas, beaten by one (Hermosa) she had defeated in the Fillies Mile in the autumn.

BEF Fleeting

May Hill winner not fancied (20-1 and stone last) in the Newmarket 1,000 Guineas but cracking third in the Epsom Oaks and clear of the remainder when chasing easy Ribblesdale scorer, Star Catcher, on soft at Royal Ascot.

B Antonia De Vega

Three wins out of four and trainer Ralph Beckett keeping the faith, getting her back to good form latest (Listed win on soft) after she finished lame behind Iridessa and Hermosa in the Fillies Mile last backend.

B Trethias

Beaten by Hermosa and Pink Dogwood (twice) but comfortably held Search For A Song in the Naas Oaks Trial (1m 3f) in late June, earning plaudits from the racereaders.

CEF Pink Dogwood

Camelot full sister to Irish Derby winner Latrobe, beaten only a neck in the Epsom Oaks and 11-10 favourite to redeem herself in the Pretty Polly but not travel well and failed get to Iridessa, with drying ground blamed.

CE Manuela De Vega

Cheshire Oaks runner-up. The winner flopped in the Epsom Oaks where Manuela was a decent fourth (bumped and not much room), a couple of lengths off Pink Dogwood and Fleeting from a bad draw.

Operatic Export

Only 83 rated and well behind Trethias in the Naas Oaks Trial. Bred to improve for a trip.

DAQMAN’S VERDICT: 1 Star Catcher (BETDAQ 5.3), alternative IRIDESSA. As conditions stand, I need a top-of-the-ground alternative to Star Catcher, but this race is late afternoon and things could change again before then.


2.25 Newbury Withhold is a glass horse and, as such, is saved for the big occasion. Can he cope with a 20lb rise since winning the Cesarewitch (2017) and then the Northumberland Plate (2018)?

Roger Charlton has put the Goodwood Cup (Group 1) on the agenda so must think he is still capable – after wind surgery – of proving he was the proverbial Group horse in those handicaps.

The ground could be a question mark, with the 9st 10lb he has to carry, but a potential Group-1 player at 8.4 on BETDAQ stands out in this.

Last Spring and summer, soft-surface-lover Proschema had his ground three times and won two (BETDAQ 6.6 this morning).

His June third on slow Tapeta in the Northumberland Plate suggests he is ripe for this, and he could improve at age four past the seven-year-old winner of that race, Who Dares Wins, who was very easy t o back this morning.

Who Dares stablemate Coeur De Lion is often the nearly horse but that may be because he likes plenty of cut. He won hurdles races on soft-heavy, then – from May 2017 – his Flat turf form in such conditions is 1221 before fifth to The Grand Visir at Royal Ascot.

The Grand Visir is a rare son of Frankel in that he wants to go twice as far as his sire ever did, winning the Ascot Stakes, enjoying the cut in the ground. Is today far enough?

The improver, Carnwennan, also liked the slow Tapeta and won easily at the meeting but we have no evidence for his ability on turf soft.

Reshoun has to answer questions – not least why he tailed off on the last day – but has won on heavy and was placed in the November Handicap.


3.00 Newbury Gordon Lord Byron (4.35 The Curragh) and The Tin Man in this one seem to have been around forever but, at seven, Tin is still a young Man in sprinting terms, and rain has been helpful.

The improver of the race, Snazzy Jazzy, loves it soft, and was ‘big’ at 6.2 in the BETDAQ orange, with The Tin Man a 2-1 saver.

3.25 The Curragh (Scurry handicap) Winners all drawn 12 and higher so, with the market leaders and last year’s one-two all in low stalls, I shall have a pound on 15.5 BETDAQ offer Gustavus Weston, lightly raced and unexposed but Group-3 placed. Well backed this morning.


3.20 Market Rasen (Summer Plate) It’s the 25th anniversary of the Summer Plate and its 15th year as a Listed chase. Peter Bowen, who has won it six times, has managed to get last year’s winner, More Buck’s, back in contention 6lb higher but in fact down 6lb on his revised rating after three wins from four completed starts.

James is on More Buck’s, while brother Sean rides Henryville, but he had gone 15 defeats – including the Summer plate in 2017 – before scoring at last, just a week ago.

Another regular, Dr Richard Newland, has won it only once, but you’d be worried about Trigger Nichol, blinkered first time and partnered by the race’s leading rider, Sam Twiston-Davies, off a light weight here. He’s back to his winning trip but 17lb higher.

The same stable’s Ronava, bidding for his hat-trick, is up 19lb for back-to-back wins in June at a lower level.

The Skeltons also fancy this £30,000 prize. Their seven-year-old Gortroe Joe (BETDAQ 7.6) might be able to shrug off a 7lb penalty for winning over CD in a small field before his break.

Though Ian Williams’ Royal Village (out of the first four just twice in 16 starts) beat Pacific De Beaune at Uttoxeter in May, he is 4lb better this afternoon.

Pacific De Baune has been hit 9lb for a second and an all-the-way small-field win in first-time cheekpieces.

He must have good ground and rain must not get into the ground for his Nicky Henderson stablemate, Casablanca Mix.

She was beaten only half a length in a Rasen three-miler in November and beat a dual winner wince when scoring at Aintree in May. This entry reads like a long-term target, and everything should be ideal for her.

DAQMAN’S VERDICT: 1 Casablanca Mix (BETDAQ 9.4), 2 More Buck’s, 3 Royal Village.


3.40 Newbury (Super Sprint) This is a pinstickers’ race, all the more so with the ground turned soft. We simply know very little in terms of form, though the stats might be helpful.

A double-figure draw seems an essential: Separate (stall 24) has already run well here with cut in the ground, and 16.5 in BETDAQ looks big for the Richard Hannon number one.

4.35 The Curragh (Minstrel Stakes) If possible, the 11-year-old Gordon Lord Byron will keep racing until he passes the £2m earnings mark. He’s on £1,902,840 with 16 wins from 99 starts; today is number 100.

I’m napping the big improver Hey Gaman (BETDAQ 3.85) under Frankie Dettori. Intrigued to see how Mr Lupton (18.0) gets on with 7f now that he’s older.


2.25 Newbury (win 30)
BET 5.25pts win PROSCHEMA

3.00 Newbury (win 30, win 10)
BET 4.5pts win THE TIN MAN

3.20 Market Rasen (win 50, win 10 place)
BULL’S-EYE BET 7.5pts win 5pts place GORTROE BOY
BULL’S-EYE BET 6pts win and 4pts place CASABLANCA MIX

3.25 The Curragh (win 20, win 10 place)
BET 1.35pts win and 4pts place GUSTAVUS WESTON

3.40 Newbury (win 30)
BET 2pts win and place SEPARATE

4.35 The Curragh (win 20)
BET 7pts win (nap) HEY GAMAN
BET 1pt win and place MR LUPTON

5.10 The Curragh (win 30, win 10)
BET 2.75pts win IRIDESSA

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