It has been a busy few days with trips to Hamilton (twice) and Haydock during the last few days, plus a visit to my local track Cartmel on Monday. Hambleton based trainer Kevin Ryan has sent out six juvenile winners and I was impressed with the well bred Byline at Hamilton on Friday evening. A colt by first season sire Muhaarar, he was bought for 140,000gns as a yearling and is a half-brother to Blaine (6 wins) and Bogart (4 wins), who Ryan also trained. A promising second on his debut at Ayr last month in the same six furlongs maiden won by Group 1 winner Wootton Bassett in 2010, he confirmed the view with a three and a half lengths victory under Tom Eaves. His rider was impressed afterwards and, interestingly, he has been given an entry in the Group 2 Gimcrack Stakes at York next month. His trainer has won that six furlongs event four times since 2005, including with the aforementioned Blaine in 2012. He is a smart sort and very much one to follow. Tom Eaves feels he will be even better on a sounder surface.
At a lesser level, I think it is only a matter of time before Tim Easterby places the five year old Regal Mirage to advantage. The Aqlaam gelding contested a ten furlongs handicap at Haydock on Saturday evening and he caught the eye finishing well in fourth under Rachel Richardson. A six times winner, he is rated 70 and two pounds lower than his last success at Beverley last August. Five of his six wins have been gained at Hamilton (3 times), Beverley and Pontefract with trips around a mile and three or a mile and a half being ideal. Look out for him stepping up in trip, especially on a stiff track.
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