The Hollies 1974 classic leads us in to today’s action, which features the Ayr Gold & Silver Cups, with a total of 48 runners in the two races.
Main event is at 3.40 and the good news is that Skybet are going 12 places each way. (No, not really)
The temptation in these sprint-fests is to go for a long priced selection but we think two horses near the top of the market represent the value.
Commanche Falls doesn’t appear to know how to run a bad race and was last seen at the end of July winning the Stewards Cup at Goodwood, beating eight of today’s opponents and has been saved for this ever since. Although Michael Dods is quoted as saying that his 4-y-o ‘can’t keep winning these races’, no-one has told the horse that and, at 15-2, we recommend an each way bet.
Ed Walker‘s Popmaster is our other pick, even though the trainer also supplies today’s favourite Great Ambassador, which finished third to Commanche Falls at Goodwood. (Keep up.)
Popmaster, to be ridden by the fragrant Hollie, won easily at Ascot two weeks ago and a five lbs higher mark may not stop this 3-y-o following up.
An identical 15-2 are the odds of reward.
The Silver version at 2.30 could also fall to the Michael Dods yard with the highly progressive 3-y-o colt Blackrod, which has won its latest two races in the style of a big improver. Unpenalised for his win at York, this horse is 5lbs well in and has an ideal middle draw. At 9-2, we suggest a win bet.
We also give a shout to Mr Dods‘ other runner Woven, which is now well below its winning mark and came back to form last time out. At 16-1, we must have an each way tickle.
Televised coverage starts with the Doonside Cup Stakes at 1.55, which has Juan Elcano installed at 6-5 favourite.
There is little wrong with the form of Kevin Ryan‘s charge but the price is a tad prohibitive so we will take a bit of a flyer and recommend a modest each way bet on The Flying Ginger at 16-1.
Roger Fell‘s horse has a bit to find on official ratings but is in receipt of just about every allowance known to man and could just get them all at it from the front under the aforementioned Hollie.
The Firth Of Clyde Fillies Stakes at 3.05 has a field of 15, headed by the snappily named Hala Hala Athmani (Don’t ask) at 4-1.
Kevin Ryan‘s charge destroyed a field of maidens at Carlisle last month, winning by an eased down 5+ lengths, after which big things were predicted and sometimes you just have to listen and take note. A win bet is advised.
We also advise an each way bet on Rishes Baar at 17-2 after her debut win over Vertiginous at Haddock two weeks ago. The last named broke the course record in winning a Listed contest over today’s course yesterday so to say the form has been franked is an understatement.
Final televised race from Ayr is the Virgin Bet Handicap at 4.15 and, in this, we are keen on the chances of Hong Kong Harry. Richard Fahey’s 4-y-o is 2-2 on the track and returned from a short break to finish strongly into third in a Racing League event at Lingfield at the end of last month. Stepping up to a mile should suit and we think this is a strong each way bet at 5-1.
Cameras are also at Newbury for four races, beginning with the Dubai World Trophy Stakes at 2.15, a Group 3 over the minimum trip.
Our selection is the somewhat enigmatic but very talented Khaadem, who strutted his stuff last time out when dropped to this distance, winning a Listed race with consummate ease. In the hope that he got out of the right side of his stall this morning, we suggest a win bet at 4-1.
We swerve the 2.50, not wanting to take on the odds-on Al Aasy and move on to the Dubai Duty Free Handicap at 3.25, in which our eye is drawn to Mo’assess, trained by Saeed Bin Suroor.
This 3-y-o is two from three, including a verdict over today’s favourite Aramaic and looks on a perfectly feasible mark for his handicap debut. At 13-2 this looks the value bet.
The Dubai Duty Free Mill Reef Stakes at 4.00 completes the action and this Group 2 has Johnny G‘s Dhabab installed as favourite at 9-4.
Although this colt’s third at Newmarket in July has been royally franked, we haven’t seen him since and all three runs have been on very quick ground.
On balance, we think that a slightly wimpish each way bet on Gubbass at 9-2 is the way to go after an excellent 5th in a Deauville Group 1 last time out, so that’s what we’ll do.
That’ll do for now.
Commanche Falls 3.40 Ayr 1pt e/w @ 15-2 (7 places Hills/Skybet)
Popmaster 3.40 Ayr 1pt e/w @ 15-2 (7 places Hills/Paddy)
Blackrod 2.30 Ayr 2pts win @ 9-2
Woven 2.30 Ayr 1pt e/w @ 16-1 (6 places)
The Flying Ginger 1.55 Ayr 1pt e/w @ 16-1
Hala Hala Athmani 3.05 Ayr 2pts win @ 4-1
Rishes Baar 3.05 Ayr 1pt e/w @ 17-2 (5 places Skybet)
Hong Kong Harry 4.15 Ayr 1.5pts e/w @ 5-1 (4 places)
Khaadem 2.15 Newbury 2pts win @ 4-1
Mo’assess 3.25 Newbury 1pt e/w @ 13-2 (4 places Hills/Coral/Skybet)
Gubass 4.00 Newbury 1.5pts e/w @ 9-2