Racing news and tips: Khalidi wins Feilden Stakes for Gosden

Greg Wood at Newmarket
The Guardian
<span class="element-image__caption">Khalidi, left, ridden by Frankie Dettori, holds off Salouen in the Feilden Stakes at Newmarket.</span> <span class="element-image__credit">Photograph: Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images</span>
Khalidi, left, ridden by Frankie Dettori, holds off Salouen in the Feilden Stakes at Newmarket. Photograph: Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images

John Gosden’s last winner of the Feilden Stakes before his victory with Khalidi here on Tuesday was Golden Horn, who went on to win the Dante, the Derby, the Eclipse, the Irish Champion Stakes and finally the Arc. Khalidi is most unlikely to scale the same heights but he kept the punters happy on the opening day of the Craven meeting with a 7-2 success under Frankie Dettori, having been a 7-1 chance in the morning.

The Feilden is, in theory, the first Derby trial of the new Flat season but it had spent two decades in relative obscurity before Intello took it on the way to winning the French Derby in 2013, a couple of years before Golden Horn used the race to announce himself as a leading contender for Epsom.

Salouen, third home behind Rivet in last year’s Racing Post Trophy and one of a handful in the field with a Derby entry, set off as an uneasy 5-2 favourite and travelled into the race well enough. After taking a bump at the start, however, Dettori always seemed to have the measure of Ryan Moore’s mount and he took charge inside the final furlong to win by a neck.

This was, in all likelihood, as far up the Pattern-race pyramid as Khalidi is likely to progress, though a step up in trip could eke out a little more improvement from a colt who made two of his first three starts in handicaps.

“He’s a genuine, sweet horse who ran on the opening day up at Donny and ran very well,” Gosden said. “He was giving weight to some big, strapping three-year-olds, and that was enough of that, giving weight to big, improving horses.

“I think we’ll step up in trip and avoid soft ground and there’s no fear of going straight [from nine furlongs] to a mile and a half with him.

“I said this morning on Radio Suffolk that I was running a horse in the Feilden and I’d won it with Golden Horn, who went on to do a couple of exciting things. I said: ‘This is not Golden Horn but he’ll run better than his odds,’ and some clown took him from 10-1 to 7-2.”

Gosden completed a double when Jewel House quickened well to take the Alex Scott Maiden Stakes later on the card and another Newmarket powerhouse, Sheikh Mohammed’s Godolphin operation, made a promising start to the season on home turf with three winners in the first four races.

Night Circus was the first Godolphin runner into the Newmarket winner’s enclosure after the Wood Ditton Maiden Stakes for unraced three-year-olds and, though he holds no significant entries at present, Charlie Appleby’s colt is bred to improve for a step up in trip and could well contest a Pattern event next time. The juvenile Sound And Silence then completed a swift double for Appleby in the next race on the card and is already pencilled in for a race at Royal Ascot.

Wednesday tips, by Greg Wood

Newmarket 1.50 Normandy Barriere 2.25 Whitecliffsofdover 3.00 Spark Plug (nap) 3.35 Sea Of Grace (nb) 4.10 Formidable Kitt 4.45 First Dance 5.20 First Nation

Beverley 2.15 Almane 2.50 Bengali Boys 3.25 Amlad 4.00 Sir Plato 4.35 East Street Revue 5.10 The Blues Master 5.45 Areen Heart 6.20 Fidelma Moon

Wolverhampton 5.40 Mr Chuckles 6.15 Challow 6.45 El Cap 7.15 Rain Wind And Fire 7.45 Dunquin 8.15 Gulf Of Poets 8.45 Swansway

Sedgefield 4.50 Broadway Belle 5.25 Hi Dancer 5.55 Cesar Et Rosalie 6.30 Never Up 7.00 Thisonetime 7.30 Sweet Belle 8.00 Mitcd

Cheltenham 2.05 William Henry 2.40 Village Vic 3.15 Its’afreebee 3.50 Doing Fine 4.25 First Fandango 5.00 Marracudja 5.30 Red Tornado

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