Final day of the York Dante meeting today, with the Mansionbet Yorkshire Cup at 3.30 the centrepiece. Strong favourite for this 1m 6f contest is the John Gosden trained Stradivarius and this 4-y-o will take some beating.

Already a Group 1 winner, having pocketed the Goodwood Cup last season, Strad can run in this Group 2 without a penalty – compare that with poor old Desert Skyline, which is saddled with an extra 3lbs for winning a Group 2 on the wrong date.

Great things are expected for JG‘s potential star this year and this has been his first target of an ambitious programme. With one bookmaker offering fractional odds against and the rest around evens, this should be our first port of call for the betting bank.

At 2.55, the Longines Irish Champions Weekend Fillies’ Stakes takes place over a mile, with Threading and Sheika Reika disputing favouritism at around 2-1 in a field of 6.

Having looked so promising when taking the Group 2 Lowther Stakes last season, Threading has completely bombed out in both runs since, including on her re-appearance a month ago, while Sheika Reika was beaten in all three races at two, before finally winning an ordinary maiden last month.

We’ll take a chance on Simon Chrisford‘s filly Dark Rose Angel, which is available at a much more palatable 6-1. This daughter of Dark Angel was touched off by a head in the Group 2 May Hill Stakes last September and, although well beaten when taken over to France for her first run this season, was not suited by the way that race panned out and we could see a different young lady this afternoon.

At 4.05, the Equinity Technology Handicap may see the return to action of Thundering Blue, which ran a race full of promise at Epsom in April. We say ‘may’ because TB was taken out of what looked like a golden opportunity race at Ascot last week, owing to the quick ground and it ain’t much different today.

However, run or not, our selection is an each way bet on Banditry, from the Ian Williams yard. A season of improvement on the Flat last year was followed by a successful switch to hurdling before having a 5 month break. Re-appearing earlier this month, the 6-y-o was noted staying on nicely into 4th over an inadequate 9 furlongs at Newmarket in a hot 16 runner handicap.

Off the same mark today, at 8-1, we fill our boots.

The British EBF Frank Whittle Partnership Fillies Handicap is a 11-2 the field affair, despite just having 13 runners. Wide open it may be, but we suggest each way bets on Crafty Madam (11-2) and Angel Of Darkness (8-1) is the way to go.

Back tomorrow for Newbury and, of course, the best bets for the wedding.


Stradivarius 3.30 York win @ 10-11 Paddy Power
Dark Rose Angel 2.55 York win @ 6-1 10Bet
Banditry 4.05 York e/w @ 8-1 SkyBet (4 places)
Crafty Madam 4.35 York e/w @ 11-2 Ladbrokes / 5-1 SkyBet (4 places)
Angel Of Darkness 4.35 York e/w @ 8-1 SkyBet (4 places)

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