Mark Howard Publications Ltd

Weekend Review

08-May-2017 14:51
in General
by Admin

Not for the first time, it proved to be a fantastic weekend at Newmarket for Aidan O'Brien and everyone concerned at Ballydoyle. In addition to taking the first two Classics of the season, O'Brien won the Jockey Cub and Dahlia Stakes. Last season's outstanding juvenile Churchill won the 2000 Guineas getting the better of Barney Roy and Al Wukair. Relishing the step up to a mile, he may have been better positioned throughout than the second and third but there is no doubt the son of Galileo was the best horse in the race and would have won regardless. Although favourite for the Derby next month, it would be no surprise to see Churchill kept to shorter distances, unless the trials over the next couple of weeks fail to unearth another potential middle distance star three year old from the stable.

Winter justified strong ante-post support by winning the 1000 Guineas yesterday. Previously trained by David Wachman, she clearly benefited from her seasonal pipeopener at Leopardstown and also appreciated the return to a mile. A two lengths winner from her stablemate Rhododendron, the runner-up didn't enjoy the clearest of passages but didn't look quick enough either. Last season's Fillies' Mile winner will be more at home over longer trips with the Oaks her next likely engagement. I thought Daban ran a cracker in third considering she was drawn widest of all. John Gosden believes she will be suited by dropping back to seven furlongs and has earmarked the Jersey Stakes at Royal Ascot next month. The former champion trainer won the race with a filly in 1991 courtesy of Satin Flower. She is a smart filly with a sharp turn of foot.

Frontiersman, who was highlighted as a horse to follow in the Appendix in AOTF, was an impressive winner of the opening twelve furlongs handicap at HQ yesterday. The Godolphin owned four year old looks a Group horse in the making and it will be interesting to see whether he contests the Duke of Edinburgh, Hardwicke or Wolferton Stakes at the Royal meeting.

Top 40 entry Vuela (11/10) made it two wins from three starts during her career by scoring on her handicap debut at Doncaster on Saturday evening. Racing off a mark of 80, Luca Cumani's filly was forced to dig deep to repel the challenge of Star of Lombardy by half a length. At least the handicapper can't be too severe and she may benefit from racing over further than a mile and a half.


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