ONLY one favourite has won the last 13 renewals of the Betfred Ebor (3.40pm) and Sir Mark Prescott's Motivado, who sneaked into the UK's richest handicap by the skin of his teeth, is a warm order to buck that losing trend.
The four-year-old was an emphatic winner of a handicap over this trip at Glorious Goodwood on his latest start earlier this month and there is every chance that he is as equally 'thrown in' as his stable's Hasten To Add was when winning this very contest back in 1994. However, he has his quirks and is as equally likely to throw in a stinker as he is to bolt up and for that reason I'm leaving Coral's 4/1 well alone.
John Gosden and William Buick have had an extraordinary season to date and I certainly wouldn't be surprised to see Camborne play a part in the finish. Yet, there is just a danger that the handicapper may have got to grips with him as he's 22lb higher than when winning at Doncaster two starts back.
French-raider Hammerfest makes my short-list as the step up to 14 furlongs will suit. If the heavens do open on the day, he’ll be a lot shorter than the 10/1 currently on offer, but his wide draw is a turn-off.
Instead, I’ll be backing Jessica Harrington’s classy hurdler STEPS TO FREEDOM to defy top-weight at a tasty looking 18/1. The six-year-old has loads of flat speed, as he showed when only beaten just over three lengths by Fame And Glory in a Listed contest earlier in the campaign. Darren Egan takes off a handy five pounds and my selection relishes a decent surface.
Saddler’s Rock looks hard to oppose earlier in the card in the Lonsdale Cup, but a better bet may be Richard Hannon’s SKY LANTERN in the Prestige Stakes (2.15pm) over at Goodwood. She found only the well-regarded Certify too good for her last time and meets nothing of that one’s class tomorrow.
Finally, Roger Varian’s ALJAMAAHEER can gain compensation for an unlucky defeat at Glorious Goodwood by winning the Group Two Celebration Mile (3.20pm).
You can follow me on Twitter @BillEsdaile for all my racing views.
SKY LANTERN 2.15pm Goodwood (tomorrow)
ALJAMAAHEER 3.20pm Goodwood (tomorrow)
STEPS TO FREEDOM e/w 3.40pm York (tomorrow)