Saturday ITV Racing Tips: Best bets for Newmarket, Thirsk and Goodwood

·10-min read

Our six selections are listed below along with the reasons behind them and, whether you're following our advice or not, Planet Sport's Racing Live Centre has to be worth a visit as it's here you'll find the race cards for Newmarket, Thirsk and Goodwood.

Selections:

Run To Freedom / Blackrod (13.50 Newmarket)

Starshiba (14.05 Thirsk)

Movin Time (14.25 Newmarket)

Almohandesah (14.40 Goodwood)

Twilight Calls (15.00 Newmarket)

Royal Patronage each-way (15.40 Newmarket)

13.50 Newmarket - Run To Freedom / Blackrod

Plenty can be fancied for this hugely competitive sprint handicap and it might be worth having a couple of stabs at finding the winner.

Henry Candy's Run To Freedom caught the eye in a Group 3 at the Craven meeting here, when finishing best of all into fourth (green sleeves, spotted cap) behind the winner Double Or Bubble (Jumby in third) having not enjoyed the best of runs, and he'll be sharper for that effort.

Bred to be speedy, he did all of his early racing over 7f and won twice over that trip, including a race here last August when clearly appreciating the fast ground, but he had no trouble when dropping back to 6f for the first time when scoring on the all-weather at Kempton in October. Hailing from a yard with a fine tradition with sprinters and being a half brother to the same connections' dual Group 1-winning sprinter Twilight Son, he has the potential to develop into a Pattern performer this season when conditions are in his favour. Michael Dods won a 6f handicap at the Craven meeting with Gale Force Maya, who was making his seasonal debut, and his stablemate Blackrod is the other one of interest here. A winner over this trip at the July meeting here last season, he duly followed up at York and was then sent off favourite for the Ayr Silver Cup, finishing a highly creditable third of the 24 runners despite losing a shoe close home. A winner over this trip at the July meeting here last season, he duly followed up at York and was then sent off favourite for the Ayr Silver Cup, finishing a highly creditable third of the 24 runners despite losing a shoe close home. He's another who could prove better than a handicapper in time and his current mark of 95 is certainly one he can win off, although he might just need this first run back.

14.05 Thirsk - Starshiba

The Hunt Cup is Thirsk's flagship race and the form of last year's race is represented by Astro King, who finished a close up third, with the re-opposing On A Session and Jean Baptiste back in fourth and fifth. Sir Michael Stoute's runner went one to finish second in the Hunt Cup at Royal Ascot and he has to be on the premises again, although he's 7lb higher than 12 months ago and On A Session, who enjoys a healthy pull at today's weights and is fit from the all-weather, may be able to reverse the form here. Sir Michael Stoute's runner went one to finish second in the Hunt Cup at Royal Ascot and he has to be on the premises again, although he's 7lb higher than 12 months ago and On A Session, who enjoys a healthy pull at today's weights and is fit from the all-weather, may be able to reverse the form here.

But Starshiba very much has the look of a horse who has been laid out for this valuable handicap by David O'Meara, who has inherited the well-handicapped five-year-old from the now retired David Elsworth, who trained him to win a 7f handicap on the all-weather as a three-year-old.

His best effort last season came in another 7f handicap at Goodwood, where he was beaten a short head by subsequent Britannia winner Perotto, and he clearly wasn't in the same form when stepping back up to a mile at the same track, where he was beaten before stamina should have been an issue. He's bred to get at least a mile, being a half-brother to high-class racemare Barshiba, who stayed 1m4f, and fitness is unlikely to be an issue either given his shrewd trainer will be keen to exploit what looks a generous handicap mark (82), which is the same as his last winning one. Trais Fluors, who represents last year's winning trainer Mick Channon and was by no means disgraced when finishing seventh in Newbury's Spring Mile on his return to action, was also considered for all he's hard to catch right.

14.25 Newmarket - Movin Time

Given the strong stable form, it's no surprise to see Charlie Appleby's Dhahabi heading the market for this 1m1f handicap having shown plenty of promise as a two-year-old, which included a third-place finish in a Group 3 here. However, he does have a 567-day absence to overcome and it could be that he's going to best over middle distances this term given he's a three-parts brother to Arrow Of Gold, who won over 1m4f, and it's worth noting he holds an entry in Royal Ascot's Hardwicke Stakes run over that trip. On the other hand, today's trip could prove ideal for Roger Varian's Movin Time, the winner of a 1m2f maiden here last May when beating subsequent Queen's Vase winner Kemari by four lengths, before a couple of creditable efforts when stepped up in class. His fifth in the Group 3 Hampton Court Stakes can be marked up as he raced wide and helped set a generous pace in a race that suited those held up, while he shaped far better than the result of his fourth-place finish in Listed company at Newbury (1m2f) would suggest. He got to the front quite easily on that occasion only to weaken once headed a furlong out, giving the impression he would be suited by going back in trip, and he has since been gelded.

Described by his trainer in a recent stable tour as a horse with a "big engine" who could land a nice race this term, having "wintered well", this might be his best chance to win a nice handicap with promising apprentice Harry Davies taking a handy 7lb off his back, before going back up in class.

Roger Varian trains the Newmarket selection, Movin Time
Roger Varian trains the Newmarket selection, Movin Time

14.40 Goodwood - Almohandesah

Varian runs Zanbaq in this 1m Listed contest for fillies but she makes little appeal at her current odds, having been "slow to come to hand" this spring, according to the trainer, and she also lacks experience having raced (and won) once.

Ed Walker's Primo Bacio has been installed as favourite but she too could prove vulnerable on her first run back and preference is for the Karl Burke-trained three-year-old, Almohandesah, who is getting a stone thanks to the age allowance and has the benefit of a previous run. It was a personal best too as she split Cachet and Hello You in the Group 3 Nell Gwyn Stakes run here 18 days ago, when giving the impression she would be suited to a return to a mile, and she has clearly wintered well. Having run some decent races in defeat at Group 3 / Listed level as a juvenile, she can surely win a race of this nature before too long and Andrea Atzeni maintains the partnership.

15.00 Newmarket - Twlight Calls

Henry Candy's four-year-old has something to find on official ratings with most of his rivals for the latest edition of the Group 3 Palace House Stakes over 5f, but he's clearly a sprinter on the up and has the potential to rate much higher. Having done all his early racing over 6f, he finally dropped to the minimum trip in a handicap run on fast ground at last season's July meeting and, having travelled typically strongly, he quickly put the race to bed to score in cosy fashion. He can be excused a couple of subsequent defeats as conditions were against him and, newly gelded, he kicked off this campaign with a stylish win in another 5f handicap at the Craven meeting, after which his connections said this race was the plan for him.

This represents a big step up in class for him, admittedly, but his connections are very hopeful he can make the jump into Pattern races this year and his entry in Royal Ascot's King's Stand Stakes won't look so speculative if he can put beat some more exposed rivals, many of whom lack a run.

15.40 Newmarket (2000 Guineas) - Royal Patronage each-way

Native Trail bids to become the first horse since Haafd in 2004 to follow up in the 2,000 Guineas after winning the Craven Stakes, and in the process give his trainer Charlie Appleby a first success in the season's opening classic after some recent near misses. The son of Oasis Dream lines up unbeaten after five starts and his ability to travel strongly and his willingness to respond to pressure, which was again in evidence here 17 days ago, will stand him in good stead and this imposing colt is entitled to come on for that run. All of which makes him a deserving favourite for all that's also factored into his price and current odds of around 5/4 (possibly shorter on the day) will put most punters off. Throw in a couple of nagging doubts about the ground, quite possibly the fastest he's raced on, and his high draw in stall 15, well away from his main market rivals, and there are grounds for taking him on. Throw in a couple of nagging doubts about the ground, quite possibly the fastest he's raced on, and his high draw in stall 15, well away from his main market rivals, and there are grounds for taking him on. His stablemate Coroebus, who will exit from stall one, comes into this fresh having not raced at two, which has proved no barrier to success, and the way he travelled and quickened when winning the Autumn Stakes here last October marked him down as a top-class miler. The horses he beat that day haven't done much since to advertise the form, however, and he's going to need some cover from his outside draw given his tendency to take a keen hold, which contributed to his defeat in the Royal Lodge Stakes run over this track and trip.

Powering to the front a long way out on that occasion, he was nabbed close home by the strong finishing Royal Patronage, who clearly has inherited plenty of stamina from his dam's side and that might come into play here.

An impressive winner at York previously, with the re-opposing Dubawi Legend over lengths adrift, he has to be forgiven a poor effort in Doncaster's Futurity Stakes, but he was reportedly struck into on that occasion and his previous efforts suggest he's got a live chance this afternoon.

Charlie Johnston, who trains him with his father Mark, who won with Mister Baileys in 1994, expects him to improve when he steps up in trip, but a strongly-run mile seems assured and it's not hard to imagine him picking up the pieces late on to hit the frame and reward each-way backers at a big price.

The article Saturday ITV Racing Tips: Best bets for Newmarket, Thirsk and Goodwood appeared first on Planetsport.com.

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