BILL ESDAILE PREVIEWS SUNDAY’S QIPCO 1,000 GUINEAS
IT WAS Frankel’s romp in the QIPCO 2,000 Guineas two years ago that put Sir Henry Cecil back on the map and now that equine freak has retired unbeaten, it’s his Hot Snap who’s making headlines.
It’s easy to draw lazy parallels between her and Frankel. Both come from Prince Khalid Abdullah’s Juddmonte production line and Hot Snap, like Frankel, will arrive at Newmarket unbeaten.
She leapt to QIPCO 1,000 Guineas favouritism after taking the Nell Gwyn Stakes here in striking fashion last month on just her second start.
Connections feel she will relish moving back up to a mile and being closely related to Midday she should go on the forecast quick ground. But at 11/4 there are enough reasons to take her on.
She obviously has ability but ran green last time and in a Group One contest on just her third start there will be little room for error. And Hot Snap wouldn’t be the first filly to put in a blistering run that proved to be a fluke.
Homecoming Queen won this race last season by nine lengths and was beaten by seven lengths and 16-and-a-half lengths on her only two starts since.
The one I’ve been keen on for a long time is WHAT A NAME. Trained in France – who have won two of the last five renewals – by Mikel Delzangles, this one boasts the strongest form on offer having narrowly lost out to Olympic Glory in a Group One at Longchamp on Arc day.
Olympic Glory will probably start favourite in the French 2,000 Guineas next week, highlighting the form of that one-and-a-quarter length defeat.
Delzangles won the 2,000 Guineas with Makfi in 2000 and his filly comes here on the back of victory in the Prix Imprudence when things went against her. Her turn of foot will be a real advantage and her most impressive wins have all come on good ground.
At 5/1 What A Name is my idea of the winner and is worth backing with Coral.
Sir Michael Stoute has endured a barren couple of seasons but has his string in fantastic order now and SIR JOHN HAWKWOOD can finally start getting his act together in the opener (2.05pm).
Frustrating last year, when a beaten favourite three times, he is just the horse Stoute excels with from three to four and conditions look in his favour.
The Freemason Lodge handler might be looking at a quick double should LADYSHIP take the 3.10pm six-furlong sprint. His fillies have been particularly forward so far and she should make an impact this season.
SHIROCCO STAR comfortably boasts the best form in the Dahlia Stakes (2.35pm) and Hughie Morrison’s four-year-old can add to her maiden win after a string of near misses at the top-level last term, including a second in the Oaks.
And remember to join the CITY AM League on The Telegraph’s brilliant QIPCO British Champion Series Fantasy Racing game. Sign up at http://fantasyracing.telegraph.co.uk and choose your trainers, jockeys and, of course, horses. It’s free to play and there are great prizes up for grabs.
SIR JOHN HAWKWOOD 2.05pm Newmarket (Sunday)
SHIROCCO STAR 2.35pm Newmarket (Sunday)
LADYSHIP 3.10pm Newmarket (Sunday)
WHAT A NAME 3.50pm Newmarket (Sunday)
I’m really excited to be riding in the QIPCO 2,000 Guineas, my first Classic, and it’s certainly been a long time coming.
It’s also especially exciting to be on one with a genuine chance and that’s exactly what I think Garswood has. He is just a very good horse – he travels so well and has a high cruising speed, but he is also very laid back.
He does everything so easy at home, nothing can go with him, and it was great to see him repeat that on the track last time. It was a seriously impressive performance and I think the step up to a mile will bring about some more improvement.
You have to be worried about the whole field in a Classic, but the front two in the market are obviously going to be hard to beat. Dawn Approach was a top class two-year-old and Toronado looked really good last time.
I’ve got a lot of faith in my lad, though, he’s the best I’ve ever ridden and I’m really looking forward to the race.