FIRST ELEVEN (2.25) will be hard to beat in the Group 3 Cumberland Lodge Stakes at Ascot.
Sir Michael Stoute’s three-year-old son of Frankel returned from a 58-day break to beat Ghostwatch over course and distance early last month and again ran very well here at the royal meeting when an unlucky third to Baghdad in the King George V Stakes.
Communique ran one of his very rare stinkers that day, languishing in 14 th place, but was back in the old routine eight days ago when seeing off Barsanti at Newmarket.
RIPP ORF (3.35) is another horse boasting a fantastic record at Ascot and looks sure to run well at an each-way price in the Challenge Cup. David Elsworth’s four-year-old beat 19 rivals here in early September, backing up his Victoria Cup success over course and distance in May.
Ripp Orf finished third to Burnt Sugar in the 27-runner Gigaset International here in July and Jason Watson’s 3lb claim is a useful tool in these big handicaps. John Gosden was at his masterly best when landing the Cambridgeshire last Saturday and Il Primo Sole arrives fresh from a nice break.
Flaming Spear bypassed the Ayr Gold Cup to wait for this assignment but could muster only 14 th spot last year.
Limato pleased his army of fans by emerging from the doldrums to score at York and Newmarket, but with plenty of rain forecast, conditions may have turned in favour of DREAM OF DREAMS (3.00) in the Group 3 Bengough Stakes. Sir Michael Stoute’s colt has plenty of winning form on soft ground.
Laurens and Andre Fabre’s French challenger Wind Chimes are vying for favouritism in the Sun Chariot Stakes at Newmarket. Karl Burke didn’t duck the issue when sending Laurens over to Leopardstown in opposition to Alpha Centauri and connections were well rewarded for their ambition.
The Qipco 1000 Guineas runner-up has a fine record at Newmarket but CLEMMIE (3.00) could be the each-way value if the forecast rain arrives in significant quantity. Aidan O’Brien’s filly handled the easy surface here last September when landing the Cheveley Park Stakes and has only a couple of lengths to make up on Laurens on their Matron Stakes form.
Redcar’s big race is the Racing UK Two-Year-Old Trophy, with 23 juveniles going to post. The prize could be heading to Yorkshire, with Tim Easterby’s colt VINTAGE BRUT (2.45) fancied to go one better than at Ayr when just denied by Dave Dexter in the Listed Harry Rosebery Stakes.
He gets the nod over the Richard Fahey-trained filly Red Balloons, impressive when winning at York last time.
- Ascot 2.25 – First Eleven (6-4, Ladbrokes)
- Ascot 3.00 – Dream Of Dreams ew (6-1, Coral, Ladbrokes)
- Ascot 3.35 – Ripp Orf ew (8-1, bet365)
- Newmarket 3.15 – Clemmie ew (15-2, Ladbrokes)
- Redcar 2.45 – Vintage Brut (6-1, Ladbrokes)