First day of the three-day York Dante meeting kicks off today, with the first five races televised by ITV.
Main event of Day 1 is the Tattersalls Musidora Stakes at 3.10 and the market has this as a match between Noon Star and Teona, both of which are prominent in the betting for the Epsom main event.
Our headline is a slight paraphrase of a No. 1 hit by Herman’s Hermits, whose lead singer was, of course, Peter Noone, so no surprise that our selection is Noon Star.
(“That’s a tad abstruse, isn’t it?” “Well, you try thinking one up every time”)
Sir Michael‘s daughter of Galileo made her 3-y-o debut with a smooth win at Wetherby, the form of which was royally franked when the 4th won the Lingfield Oaks Trial last weekend. With proven turf form and plenty of improvement to come, we recommend a win bet at 7-4.
Teona is the same price as our selection and has yet to run on turf, having been second and first at Newcastle in her 2-y-o career and there is little doubt that the Roger Varian camp think they have got a live one.
Mr. Sod of Sod’s Law must be rubbing his hands at this dilemma so we hope he is disappointed.
Coverage starts with the Sky Bet Race To The Ebor Jorvik Handicap at 1.40 which has a field of 15, from which we have selected two.
Mr Carpenter is unbeaten at this track (2-2) and should be fully primed after a hands and heels prep run at Newcastle. The SPs for this 5-y-o’s victories have been 100-1 (yes, really) and 25-1, so safe to say its always been underestimated but we have to settle for 10-1 this afternoon.
Our other pick is the lightly raced but improving Labeebb from the Crisfords. Once again a run on the AW should have done the trick and we think this one is overpriced at 20-1.
It’s the turn of the sprinters at 2.10 when the Churchill Tyres Handicap takes place with even more runners – 18 to be precise.
Two darts at this one as well – course specialist Gulliver at 8-1 and Roulston Scar at 7-1 will hopefully give us a run for the hard-earned.
More sprinters at 2.40 for the Clipper Logistics Stakes, a Group 2 over 6f.
12 are due to go to post headed by Art Power at 3-1. After a spectacular start to last season, Tim Easterby‘s 4-y-o’s form seemed to tail off markedly and, with no recent run and no soft ground, we oppose.
Oxted is a Group 1 winner, having pouched the July Cup last season and was still feeling the effects of an abortive trip to the Middle East when running a slightly lacklustre race to be second at Newmarket a month ago. Now reported to be in A1 shape by its trainer we suggest a win bet at 9-2.
The horse that beat Oxted at Newmarket was the rejuvenated Summerghand, which is unbeaten since the old visor was applied and we are unable to ignore it, under The Doyler, at an attractive 18-1.
The Sky Bet Handicap at 3.40 competes the telly coverage and we think there is a very well handicapped runner in this, namely Huddleton Mac.
Hughie‘s charge boasts a defeat of the 112 rated New Mandate on his 2-y-o record and yet runs in this handicap off a mark of 88.
Unsurprisingly, the market has spotted it but it’s still worth a win bet at 3-1.
Back tomorrow for the eponymous event.
Noon Star 3.10 York 4pts win @ 7-4
Mr Carpenter 1.40 York 1.5pts e/w @ 10-1 (5 places)
Labeebb 1.40 York 1pt e/w @ 20-1 (5 places)
Gulliver 2.10 York 1pt e/w @ 8-1 (7 places SkyBet)
Roulston Scar 2.10 York 1pt e/w @ 7-1 (7 places SkyBet)
Oxted 2.40 York 2pts win @ 9-2
Summerghand 2.40 York 1pt e/w @ 18-1
Huddleton Mac 3.40 York 3pts win @ 3-1
* “I’m Into Something Good” by Herman’s Hermits (1964)