Call out the instigators*, it’s Ayr Gold Cup day, with the eponymous race taking place at 3.40.

A field of 24 are due to thunder down the Scottish turf, headed in the market by Nahaarr, trained by William Haggas. Drawn in Trap 13, Tom Marquand can choose his path, with the result of yesterday’s Bronze version suggesting a high draw is a marginal advantage. However, we don’t quite see the attraction of this one and prefer the chances of the second in Mr Lupton, trained by Richard Fahey.

This 7-y-o’s two previous attempts to win this race have not gone too well, frankly, but this year it comes here in top form and much lower in the ratings. Six days ago, Mr Lupton stormed home in a valuable handicap at the Curragh off a mark of 100 and is just 3lbs higher this afternoon. With Billy Garrity taking off 5lbs, this rates a decent each way bet at 15-2.

We also give a squeak to Young Fire from the O’Meara stable, trying six furlongs for the very first time after putting in a power packed finish to go straight past next time out winner (and Preview selection) Tranchee at Haddock two weeks ago. With headgear refitted to add sharpness, we think 33-1 is too big and recommend an each way tickle.

Televised coverage starts with the Jordan Electrics Doonside Cup Stakes at 1.55, in which Addeybb is expected to defy a big penalty and take this Listed event. However, 11-10 is no fun, so we just watch.

The Ayr Silver Cup at 2.30 also has the maximum 24 runners and, in this, we think King’s Lynn is far too short at 7-2 in a race of this nature.

We suggest an each way investment on Lord Oberon, trained by Karl Burke, which showed the benefit of a first time tongue tie last time out when a strong finishing third again at Haddock and again two weeks ago. Has a previous win off a higher mark than today’s and Clifford Lee can give us a good run for our hard-earned. Take the 16-1 available.

The cameras are also at Newbury for four races, starting with the Dubai International Airport World Trophy Stakes at 1.40. This Group 3 sprint has the perpetual under-achiever Equilateral installed as the 9-4 favourite, but, in truth, we have lost the faith and suggest, instead, an each way bet on Wise Words at 13-2.

James Tate‘s 4-y-o made a pleasing return to action after almost a year off when fourth in a Doncaster Listed contest and, although with a bit to find on official ratings, could be the value.

The Dubai Duty Free Handicap at 2.15 sees Tenbury Wells at the top of the market at around 3-1 after a good second at Sandown last time out. However, in a close third that day was Kingbrook, having his first run since last September and first run for the Ian Williams outfit and, with a 3lb pull and improvement likely, this looks the way to go at 10-1.

We also suggest an each way bet on Starcat at 6-1 after making the frame at Doncaster in a race not run to suit.

The Dubai Duty Free Legacy Cup Stakes at 2.50 has just 4 runners and here we give a chance to Desert Encounter to show it still has it.

Winner of this race in 2017 and last year and third in 2018, DE is not getting any younger but Will Buick might just be able to coax another win on the favoured track. Have a win bet at 7-2.

Last, but not least, is the Dubai Duty Free Mill Reef Stakes at 3.25 and in this we plump for Fivethousandtoone, named after the odds on Leicester winning the Premier League.

An unlucky second on racecourse debut, this son of Frankel demolished his field at Newcastle at the beginning of this month and has been talked up by the yard ever since. Has it to find on official ratings but is ‘expected’ and we recommend a bet at 3-1.

Have a good day, folks.


Mr Lupton 3.40 Ayr 1.5pts e/w @ 15-2 (6 places)

Young Fire 3.40 Ayr 0.50pts e/w @ 33-1 (6 places)

Lord Oberon 2.30 Ayr 1pt e/w @ 16-1 (6 places)

Wise Words 1.40 Newbury 1pt e/w @ 13-2 (2 places)

Kingbrook 2.15 Newbury 1pt e/w @ 10-1 (4 places)

Starcat 2.15 Newbury 1pt e/w @ 6-1 (4 places)

Desert Encounter 2.50 Newbury 2pts win @ 7-2

Fivethousandtoone 3.25 Newbury 2pts win @ 3-1


* ‘Something in the Air’ – Thunderclap Newman (1969)

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