ONLY five runners go to post for the Greenham Stakes at Newbury, but they include leading 2000 Guineas candidates CANFORD CLIFFS and Arcano. The pair met in the Group One Prix Morny last August when Brian Meehan’s unbeaten son of Oasis Dream emerged ? length in front of our selection. However, I’m pretty confident that Richard Hannon’s runner can gain revenge tomorrow.
Canford Cliffs put up a sensational display to land the Coventry Stakes at the Royal meeting on only his second ever racecourse appearance and is already as short as 5/1 with William Hill to land the 2000 Guineas next month. There are plenty of stamina doubts about his ability to see out a true run mile, but tomorrow’s seven furlong trip should prove no problem. I think he’ll have too much speed for Arcano, who has been a big drifter on Betdaq in recent weeks for the 2000 Guineas. The interesting one in the race is the John Gosden trained Bullwhip who bolted up at Doncaster on his debut last month. His connections wouldn’t throw him in at this level if they didn’t think he was up to it.
The only other one that caught my eye at a massive price at Newbury was the Barry Hills trained HUZZAH at around 25/1 in the Spring Cup at 2.35pm. I am prepared to forgive him his disappointing run on soft ground in the Lincoln and reckon he’ll go close on this better ground.
It’s the Scottish Grand National tomorrow and thirty-one runners go to post for the four mile marathon contest. Cheltenham Festival winner Poker De Sivola currently heads the betting, but I prefer the look of THAT’S RHYTHM at around 20/1 each-way. He was sent off at just 9/1 for this race last year when falling early and the ground has come right for him.
Looking at this afternoon’s racing and Richard Hannon runs a couple of well regarded newcomers at Newbury. The Queen’s ROYAL EXCHANGE is reportedly pretty smart and may take some catching in the opener at 1.35pm. The Hannon team has made its usual electric start to the campaign and their juveniles seem to be that little bit more forward at this time of year. The same team saddle FUNKY LADY in the Bridget Maiden Fillies Stakes in which the unraced three-year-old takes on fifteen others in what looks a really warm heat. However, she is supposed to be pretty useful and may be a decent each-way proposition as she takes on fillies from some top yards.
Staying at Newbury and the Queen could easily record a double as the Roger Charlton trained HIGH CONSTABLE looks set to play a major part in the 2.10pm contest. The son of Shamardal hasn’t been seen since bolting up on the all-weather in January, but is expected to go very close off what might prove to be a lenient mark. Over at Cheltenham tonight and I am prepared to give the David Pipe trained ASHKAZAR another chance on better ground. I think a combination of the soft ground and trip beat him at the Festival and on a going day, he’d eat this lot for breakfast.