ANOTHER stunning day for Graeme Johnston (@GraemeJ_83) on Friday. Can his great form continue? He looks at two races on Saturday here.
16:00 Newmarket | Channel 4
The Superlative Stakes is for two year olds over seven furlongs and this looks a very good little race. Five last time out maiden winners and Royal Ascot place form is on offer and I think whatever wins this could go right to the top.
Cunco is a Frankel colt who after winning well on debut went on to finish third in the Chesham Stakes at Royal Ascot. He ran well there however I think seven furlongs on quicker ground may be against him and I think there may be speedier types who will be seen to better effect here.
South Season was one of the most impressive juvenile maiden winners of the season thus far and is a very exciting prospect. He was well supported before the race and he is well worth his place in the field. He shaped although he would enjoy the extra distance here but this is very different ground and despite his potential I’m passing him over here.
Bin Battuta is a half brother to Dream Ahead who was a top class juvenile himself a few years ago. He showed he was a colt of real potential with a smooth victory of a Windsor maiden and looks worth his place in the field. He could be anything and has to be taken seriously here however I’m looking elsewhere for the winner here.
War Decree from Ballydoyle is the likely favourite here and he deserves his place at the head of the market. A good winner of a Leopardstown maiden over seven furlongs on good ground he won like a well above average horse and given the improvement the stables juveniles show for their introduction he has to be respected. Bred to be a very good two year old I will be backing him here but it does look a difficult race to call.
16:35 Newmarket | Channel 4
The July Cup is the highlight of the meeting and one of the big sprints of the season. It’s attracted a high class field of 18 and if you shop around there are some fantastic each way opportunities with some bookmakers paying five places, but where is the value?
This looks wide open and it’s hard to even know where to begin! Twilight Son was a brave winner of the Diamond Jubilee Stakes at Royal Ascot and is likely to improve further for that race.
His stable had been in no sort of form until recently and I thought he was the most likely winner until the ground dried up. He has the best form on offer here however I think he may struggle on this ground today.
His stablemate Limato promised to be top class early on in his career however he never developed in to the superstar he promised to be. That said he has only been out of the first two once in his career and will love the ground here and has to be taken seriously. However he has a habit of starting slowly and if that happens he will struggle and my gut tells me he won’t win this.
Magical Memory travelled best of all in the Diamond Jubilee at Royal Ascot and seemed to tire in the ground that day. His form on quicker ground is very strong and has claims to reverse Ascot form with Twilight Son but in this field I’m going to look elsewhere for a bigger price.
Air Force Blue comes here on the back of two disappointing runs in the English and Irish Guineas but this could revitalise him. He’s looked all at sea on soft ground this season and on quick ground over six furlongs could see him return to his juvenile form however I can’t take a chance on him today.
Quiet Reflection won the Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot last time out and looks the best of the Classic generation lining up. She won well there however she is another one who will not like the ground here. I fear she may be vulnerable today but is one to keep onside later in the season.
Profitable has ran once over six furlongs when he was sixth in the Commonwealth Cup last season but I don’t think you can judge him on that. He is a completely different horse this season and on his three starts this season he has shown himself to be the best five furlong sprinter around.
Clive Cox was worried about soft ground for him and believed he’ll improve for better ground and his pace is going to be vital in a big field where it’s likely they will go off at breakneck pace. I think he will stay and to me is a very good each way bet here.
For those of you looking for a bigger priced selection I am interested in Arod at a huge price. Despite running fourth in the Derby two years ago he has gradually dropped in trip and this is the shortest distance he has ever raced over.
He will relish the conditions today and he developed in to a top class miler last year winning at Group level twice and coming second in the Sussex Stakes. He’s not short of pace and if he isn’t taken off his feet early on he could easily run into a place here.
16:00 Newmarket – War Decree to win (3/1 Bet365)
16:35 Newmarket – Profitable each way (10/1 BetVictor)
16:35 Newmarket – Arod each way (50/1 Boylesports)