MAGICAL TAKES POLE POSITION IN THE CHAMPION STAKES: Aidan O’Brien changed the face of British Champions Day on Saturday when he last night declared Magical, not for the Fillies And Mares, for which she was favourite, but for the Champion Stakes. That unseated the Champion favourite, Mishriff, and left the Fillies And Mares wide open.
COUNTDOWN: Today Daqman tries to fathom the reason for recent shock results in the British Champions Sprint.
MARK WITH A CROSS: FOUR NAPS OUT OF SIX FOR DAQMAN: Daqman’s nap won 20 lengths yesterday to give him a sequence of 111231 in the last six days, with the four winners as follows:
✔️ WON 11-10 NEVILLE’S CROSS (yesterday’s nap)
✔️ WON 3-1 ILARAAB (Saturday nap)
✔️ WON 4-6 McFABULOUS (Friday supernap)
✔️ WON 11-10 UGO GREGORY (Thursday nap)
SPRINT: ASCOT C.V. ESSENTIAL
⚠️ HEADS UP Outsiders have won the last three Sprint championships at 10-1, 28-1 and 33-1 with three things in common: they loved Ascot, loved the soft-heavy ground and had good form in the race and/or at Royal Ascot.
The forecast for Saturday at Ascot is soft, heavy in places, and the following hot nine (in ratings order) have all these credentials:
120 Dream of Dreams Ascot 20202; soft ground 1220002; second Diamond Jubilee twice, won Group 3; unplaced twice in this champion sprint.
116 Glen Shiel Ascot 40; soft ground 11100224002; fourth in this race last year.
115 Art Power Ascot 1; soft ground 1; won a handicap at the royal meeting.
114 One Master Ascot 1320; soft ground 11241; third in the Queen Anne, second in this Champion Sprint.
113 Cape Byron Ascot 10201110; soft ground 13010; won the Victoria Cup, Wokingham Stakes and the Group 3 in October.
111 Speak In Colours Ascot 100400; soft ground 312001300; fourth and fifth Diamond Jubilees, sixth in this race last year.
110 The Tin Man Ascot 14011040000; soft ground 20301000000; won Diamond Jubilee 2017, winner of this Sprint Champions race 2016.
108 Ventura Rebel Ascot 123; soft ground 20; 2nd Norfolk Stakes, 3rd Commonwealth Cup.
099 Onassis Ascot 1; soft ground 1; won the Sandringham Stakes at Royal Ascot.
BETDAQ SPORTSBOOK: 2.62 Dream Of Dreams, 6 One Master, 9 Glen Shiel, 10 Art Power, 17 Cape Byron, 21 Speak In Colours, The Tin Man, 28 Ventura Rebel.
TRAISHA TRAVELS ON TRUE PATH
⭕ 3.20 Bath Anything you can do.. Willie Mullins made a surprise appearance at Bath in 2018 and landed a gamble in this fillies’ and mares’ Listed with True Self.
Now Joseph O’Brien has spotted the prize that makes both owners and breeders happy. As in True Self’s case, the owners of Traisha are breeders, and the turn out of 14 runners shows how this race has become an event.
Traisha was second in a Group 3 at Naas to another Ballydoyle filly, Aidan O’Brien’s Passion, and I’m struggling to find anything with comparable form.
Ralph Beckett is good with fillies and Hereby completed a four-timer by winning a Listed at Ascot over today’s trip on today’s ground.
She was third in the Lancashire Oaks this year but without running up to her rating and front-running attacks on two Chester Listed races both failed.
The handicapper says that, in landing a hat-trick on the soft in the last three months, Urban Artist has improved 16lb but that’s still 8lb beneath Traisha.
A handicap winner last summer, Vivionn has had the look of one of those Sir Michael Stoute late improvers, not being seen in the Pattern until June off a mark of 102.
Placed in a Listed and a Group 3, Vivionn was runner-up in the fillies’ St leger, the Park Hill Stakes on the last day at Doncaster.
But the handicapper has not moved her even a pound for those three runs; she has a couple of pound still to find on Traisha, and the winner of the Park Hill was trained by Joseph O’Brien, so he should know exactly where they stand.
Well beaten in that Doncaster race, but standing the race up strongly, was Makawee, who has since hammered Tribal Craft at Goodwood.
So it looks very much like a match between Traisha and Vivionn, unless William Haggas can produce some late improvement from his pair, Born With Pride and Dhabyah. Traisha looked huge in the BETDAQ Betting Exchange orange at 6.6 this morning.
DATE, TIME AND PLACE FOR WRENTHORPE
⭕ 4.20 Nottingham A classic ‘horses for courses’ example here with Wrenthorpe who loves Nottingham at this time of the year.
Three of his four career wins have been here a Colwick Park (including this race last year) and interestingly all within the 2 October to 7 November band which we are slap bang in the middle of.
He again gets the soft ground he likes (Nottingham wins have been on heavy x 2 and soft x 1).
He was trading at around 6.8 at 11am this morning on the BETDAQ betting exchange in a wide open race and makes more appeal than the shorter priced Shepherds Way who is shooting up the handicap.
This one is on for a hat-trick after soft ground wins at Haydock but she is now 12lb higher since the first of those wins.
SCARAMANGA ANOTHER FOR NICHOLLS
⭕ 5.35 Bath The second division of this 1m 6f marathon test can give Paul Nicholls yet another winner in the last 14 days – this time on the flat.
The stable are running at a sensational 12 winners from their last 25 runners – thanks in main to a haul of eight winners at Chepstow on Friday and Saturday.
Scaramanga is a very useful 141 rated hurdler but proved at Ascot last time out he has plenty of ability on the level too when runner-up to Table Mountain in a class 3.
The drop in class, drop in distance and more testing grounds all get big ticks as positives for me
3.20 Bath (win 30)
BET 5.25pts win TRAISHA
4.20 Nottingham (win 20)
BET 3.4pts win WRENTHORPE
5.25 Bath (win 20)
BET 7.0pts win (nap) SCARAMANGA
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