COMMUNIQUE (2.45) has been kept busy by Mark Johnston but epitomises the toughness of his horses.
The three-year-old ran another excellent race at York in finishing fourth to Pivoine and this is a slightly less demanding assignment at Sandown under Silvestre De Sousa.
TOO DARN HOT (3.35) lived up to his name with a sizzling debut at Sandown, powering clear to score by seven lengths. John Gosden’s colt could be something special and we’ll know more after the Solario Stakes.
BARRISTON THE BOLD (4.10) got messed about at the start at Goodwood but was noted making good late headway up the far rail. The top weight is worth another chance in the 7f nursery.
In-form Hughie Morrison has booked SDS for his course and distance winner COMPTON MILL (5.20). The gelding needs some give underfoot to show his best so hopefully the Esher track won’t dry out too much given a hot weather forecast.
At Chester, Mark Johnston’s Poet’s Society will be fancied to follow up his plucky York victory but he was sent off favourite for this event last year and managed only eighth spot off a much lower rating. Stablemate LAKE VOLTA (2.05) is of more interest on the back of his close third to Flaming Spear at Goodwood. The three-year-old has drawn stall two with Roodee specialist Franny Norton on top.
Johnston saddles Hochfeld with a chance in the Chester Stakes, a Listed contest over 1m 6f, but this looks at the mercy of DURETTO (3.15). Andrew Balding’s gelding was a winner here last September and runs the track exceptionally well.
FINAL VENTURE (2.45) found Take Cover a length too good in last year’s running of the William Hill Beverley Bullet Sprint but can avenge that defeat from a good position in stall five. He showed blistering pace to lead at York until collared by El Astronaute close home. Take Cover likes to make all but stall nine may be problematical.
ROCK ON BERTIE (5.05) will be carrying a hefty each-way bet if all eight stand their ground in the apprentices’ handicap. He is a course and distance winner, beating Bollin Joan (three-time winner since), and you can draw a line through his last run when trapped wide throughout.
- Sandown 2.45 – Communique (7-1, Coral, Betfred, bet365)
- Sandown 3.35 – Too Darn Hot (evens, bet365)
- Sandown 4.10 – Barriston The Bold (2-1, Ladbrokes)
- Sandown 5.20 – Compton Mill (4-1, bet365)
- Chester 2.05 – Lake Volta (6-1, Paddy Power)
- Chester 3.15 – Duretto (10-11, William Hill)
- Beverley 2.45 – Final Venture (7-2, Ladbrokes)
- Beverley 5.05 – Rock On Bertie ew (14-1, bet365)