Toronado to blow Guineas rivals apart

Bill Esdaile
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RICHARD Hannon has won the QIPCO 2,000 Guineas (3.50pm) three times during his illustrious career but you have to go back to 1990 for his last success with Tirol.

He has had some decent contenders in recent seasons, none more so than Canford Cliffs, but I get the feeling that TORONADO could be about to end the stable’s English Classic hiatus. The High Chaparral colt is unbeaten in four starts and was a commanding winner of the Craven last month.

Now, that hasn’t been the best trial in recent years, but the manner of his victory was hugely impressive.

He travelled supremely well, quickened and put the race to bed in a matter of strides. A slight concern is that most of his wins have come in small fields, but the vibes from the Hannon yard are that this fellow could be a bit special.

The main sticking point, though, is undoubtedly the favourite Dawn Approach who was the champion two-year-old and is unbeaten in six starts.

Jim Bolger is a master trainer and although he is yet to win this race, he has gone on record to say that Dawn Approach is as good as he has trained.

It really looks a match between the top two and with Toronado having the advantage of a prep run I just favour him, especially as he can be backed at 9/4 with Coral while Dawn Approach is just 11/8 with the same firm.

Of the outsiders, Garswood is the most interesting on the back of his classy win in the European Free Handicap last time, but the value has been sucked out of his price in recent days.

Van Der Neer is a live second string for Hannon with William Buick in the saddle, while the vibes from Ballydoyle suggest that they don’t have a superstar this year.

The rest of tomorrow’s Newmarket card looks particularly trappy.

I’m quite interested in Heeraat for the in-form William Haggas team in the Palace House Stakes, but it looks a hot race and it may pay to keep a watching brief.

There is some decent action at Goodwood and I fancy Hughie Morrison’s COQUET to land the Daisy Warwick Stakes at 2.20pm. She won well here over 10 furlongs on her seasonal reappearance last year before finishing an unlucky sixth in the Investec Oaks.

The daughter of Sir Percy was badly hampered at the two furlong pole and would surely have been placed if she had avoided that interference. Morrison’s string is in rude health and this looks a good starting point for her.

Hannon could set up Toronado’s Guineas bid with a confidence boosting win at the Sussex track as DEMOCRETES holds really strong claims in the seven-furlong handicap (2.55pm).

The four-year-old has only won two of his 13 career starts, but his last two outings have been over an inadequate six furlongs and this step up in trip will suit perfectly.

He flew home at Windsor last time to take third and with the more than capable Pat Dobbs in the saddle I expect the Cadeaux Genereux gelding to notch his first win since September 2011.

■ Pointers…
COQUET 2.20pm Goodwood (tomorrow)
DEMOCRETES 2.55pm Goodwood (tomorrow)
TORONADO 3.50pm Newmarket (tomorrow)