As I hunker down in the Cyclone-proof sub-terranean HQ of Raceweb, you will be delighted to hear that The Pharoah of Galway is also safe in his Japanese hotel room and is currently predicting a score of 0-0 for the Scotland Japan game and that both Mercedes and Red Bull will start on wet tyres. This was after Saturday’s track action at Suzuka was cancelled due to Typhoon Hagibis. As a result, qualifying will move to 1000 Sunday morning, when the weather is set to have cleared, with the race taking place at 1410 local time, as planned. Saturday’s third practice session will not be rescheduled……. Or Not.
Meanwhile, back in cyclone-free
2:20 NEWMARKET Godolphin Flying Start Zetland Stakes (G3) Cl1 (2yo) 1m2f
With eight runners I’d be tempted to back Sir Mark’s TELL ME ALL at the odds, as on trends he’s in with a shout. However, this should be MYTHICAL’s race who won by 8+l on the Soft at Gowran Park LTO. He was sent to the front early, and was then told to kick on which he readily did, but in a very green manner. He is an enormous beast and next year he could be a very imposing horse indeed. Depending on his performance today, I would be unsurprised to see him make some Derby shortlists.
2:40 YORK coral.co.uk Rockingham Stakes (Listed) Cl1 (2yo) 6f
VENTURA LIGHTNING and STORMY GIRL look e/w value.
2:55 NEWMARKET Dubai Autumn Stakes (G3) Cl1 (2yo) 1m
MOLATHAM is highly-regarded at home and could make this his first Group success. by taking the Group 3 Autumn Stakes. He won the Convivial at York and The Flying Scotsman (Listed) at Donny, with Wichita who he beat winning a G3 at HQ on his next start. Pedigree suggests the ground shouldn’t be an issue, but I have a sneaking regard for JOHAN who offers e/w value at around 9s.
3:15 YORK Smart Money’s On Coral Handicap (96Plus Race) Cl2 (3yo+ 0-110) 1m2½f
HARROVIAN just keeps improving and has won two of his last four starts. The handicappers 5lb rise is offset his WFA allowance and still looks progressive.
3:30 NEWMARKET Darley Dewhurst Stakes (G1) (Colts & Fillies) Cl1 (2yo) 7f
I could spin this around until the cows come home but we all know that PINATUBO should and will win this – but at 1/3 on, do we really want to have a bet? Personally, I shall have a little bit on POSITIVE e/w who is OK on trends and at 14/1 offers some value. Adam Kirby said Positive was a lot more street-wise LTO and on this ground, Positive might even get a lot closer to the leading 2yo-elect than his previous 5l beating. WICHITA will probably fill 2nd place.
3:50 YORK Coral Sprint Trophy Handicap Cl2 (3yo+ 0-105) 6f
4:10 NEWMARKET Emirates Cesarewitch Stakes (Heritage) Cl2 (3yo+) 2m2f
Fiddling around with the trends I am left with five possible winners. They are GREAT WHITE SHARK – DARKSIDEOFTARNSIDE – NUITS ST GEORGE – PARTY PLAYBOY –
3.20 CHEPSTOW Native River Handicap Chase (Class 2 Handicap)
I do like Dan Skelton’s CAPTAIN CHAOS for this who was disappointing last year on going that was too firm for him. He carries 7lb less this time around, and his six career wins have all come on soft ground with relatively small fields and in Class 2 and below. DRINKS INTERVAL might surprise.
4.30 CHEPSTOW Silver Trophy Handicap Hurdle (G3 Handicap)
IMPERIAL AURA looks very well-handicapped and ZANZA would be no surprise.