MAORI BOB is just the job.
Michael Bell’s hope has done really well in the last year or so. He won twice in small-field races in July and promises to be suited by today’s sort of contest even more.
His third behind Genetics at the Shergar Cup is not worth worrying about as it was a ridiculous race when the leader went off like his tail was on fire.
I’m confident he’s still nicely treated and he looks way over-priced.
Melting Dew is the obvious starting point. He struck at Chelmsford and Sandown over 1m2f before running a cracker when stepped up to 1m6f at Goodwood. This trip should be ideal so he has to go well but he has gone up another 5lbs.
Kelly’s Dino had First Nation back in fourth when winning at Ascot last month. There’s no doubt he had the run of the race that day but he is pretty reliable at around this distance.
That was First Nation’s comeback run so there’s every chance he’ll improve for it. His big-field Newmarket success last October makes him an interesting contender.
Course winner Pacify is another in with a decent shout.
STRADIVARIUS looks set to join millionaires’ row.
John Gosden’s ace stayer cannot be taken on in the Lonsdale Cup. Victories in the Yorkshire Cup, Gold Cup and Goodwood Cup he just needs to win today to bag the Weatherbys Hamilton Stayers’ Million series and he wouldn’t even have to be at his best to bag the bumper bonus.
He clearly stays really well but this is a horse not short of pace and he looks bomb proof even having to give 3lbs to the rest of the field.
Red Verdon returns to 2m after chasing home Mirage Dancer in a Group 3 over 1m4f at Goodwood. That was his fourth runner-up finish in a row and he’s going to have to settle for place money again.
Count Octave was entered in the Ebor after his third over 2m5f at Royal Ascot. This is probably his best trip but he’s yet to truly prove he’s up to this level.
Max Dynamite has yet to recapture his form after a spell in Australia, while Desert Skyline has been stuffed by Stradivarius on his last three starts.
Idaho has won his last three races outside Group 1 company but he had to settle for a distant view of my fancy at Goodwood.
Templegate’s TV tips
1.55 York – Maori Bob: ‘He won twice in small-field races in July and promises to be suited by today’s sort of contest even more’
2.25 York – Stradivarius: ‘Cannot be taken on in the Lonsdale Cup’
3.00 York – Legends Of War: ‘Looked a potential star when scooting home on his debut at Yarmouth in May’
3.35 York – Battaash: ‘The fastest sprinter I’ve seen and I expect him to bag his second Group 1 prize’
GO to War in the Al Basti Equiworld Gimcrack Stakes.
LEGENDS OF WAR looked a potential star when scooting home on his debut at Yarmouth in May. He missed Royal Ascot with a minor injury and maybe he wasn’t at his best when he reappeared in July Stakes at Newmarket.
Last month’s win at Newbury in a three-runner race didn’t tell us much but I’m convinced he’ll be much better with today’s likely stronger pace.
The Irish Rover was only beaten a length when third behind Advertise – winner of the July Stakes – in the Group 1 Phoenix Stakes at the Curragh just under two weeks ago. That gives him a fine chance today but he was at an advantage racing up with an ordinary pace. With Aidan O’Brien’s team not running particularly well he might struggle to hold some of these.
Shine So Bright – fifth in the Coventry at Royal Ascot – didn’t get the clearest of runs when third in the Richmond Stakes at Goodwood on his first start for Andrew Balding. He might need another furlong and this sharp track is unlikely to play to his strengths.
Space Traveller hasn’t beaten much in his two victories but the manner of success has been impressive. He should run well for last year’s winning trainer Richard Fahey.
GET ready for a Battering in the Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes.
BATTAASH is the fastest sprinter I’ve seen and I expect him to bag his second Group 1 prize.
He was simply awesome when winning Goodwood’s King George Stakes by four lengths three weeks ago. Take Cover, Muthmir, Mr Lupton, Havana Grey, Heartache and Sioux Nation were all left trailing that day.
He earlier found Ascot’s stiff finish too taxing when runner-up behind Blue Point in the King’s Stand at Royal Ascot. His early pace was stunning in that 5f contest and he looked to go off too hard setting the race up for the fast-finishing Godolphin runner.
On today’s sharper track I can’t see that happening again.
Some will keen to take Battaash on as he got far too worked up before the Nunthorpe last season and could only finish fourth behind Marsha.
That doesn’t concern me too much as he’s been much calmer before his races this season.
Blue Point is the one most likely to take advantage if Battaash runs below form. He is much better over 5f these days so I’m not worried about his midfield July Cup effort on his only run since his Royal Ascot victory. The sharp track is much more of a concern.
Michael Dods twice won this race with Mecca’s Angel and he’s got another smart filly in Mabs Cross.
She found it hard to keep up with Battaash and Blue Point in the King’s Stand so it was a fine effort to run on into third. Today’s sharper track doesn’t help her hopes of reversing that form.
Judicial is a fine sprinter and he loves fast ground. He’s improving with age and won his first Group race at Sandown last time. I’m just not sure this is his track, either.
Mr Lupton has won here three times so has no worry with the track but I would be surprised if he’s up to this level.
5.45 Macho Lady
6.15 Volcanic Sky
6.45 Casey Banter
7.15 Greatest Journey
7.45 Red Starlight
8.15 King Of Nepal
8.45 Distant Chimes
2.50 Hyperfocus (treble)
3.25 Moonlit Sands
4.00 Twenty Times
5.00 Place Des Vosges
5.05 Belated Breath
5.35 Al Fajir Mukbile
6.05 Greenback Boogie
6.35 George Of Hearts
7.05 Highland Sky
7.35 Simply Breathless
2.05 Hello Bangkok
3.45 Autumn Leaves
4.20 Elasia (nb)
5.15 Red Charmer
6.25 Swan Street
6.55 Arctic Sound
7.25 Quick Breath
7.55 Fields Of Fortune
1.55 Maori Bob
3.00 Legends Of War
4.15 Beat Le Bon
4.50 Borodin (nap)