Despite only having a handful of runners last week, we enjoyed two more winners, the first coming courtesy of Pleasant Surprise (pictured) in a mile and a half fillies’ maiden at Wolverhampton on Wednesday. She had shaped well on her debut at Beverley and, although this was not a strong race, she won with plenty in hand and should continue to improve. In addition to this she also scooped up an extra £10k for being eligible for the Plus Bonus Scheme. Our other runner at Wolverhampton that day was Spinnaka, who did herself no favours with an awkward exit from the stalls. It is very tough to make any impact at the track coming from as wide and as far back as she did, so she is definitely worth another chance and hopefully she can build on her Newmarket maiden second next time out. Another runner on the all-weather for us last week was Al Shaqab Racing’s Al Galayel at Chelmsford, who was still green on his second start, having not learnt much from his debut at Nottingham in April. We will see if that experience has taught him anything and perhaps look at stepping him up in trip for his next start.
With the ground too quick for Rosental in the Group 2 Charm Spirit Dahlia Stakes at Newmarket on Sunday, our two weekend runners were Materialistic and Vuela, both on Saturday. Materialistic had run well in a Listed race at Kempton on her last start, so it was obviously disappointing to see her run way below that level at Goodwood. She was fine after the race and hopefully she will be in a better frame of mind next time. There was a much more pleasing effort later on Saturday from Mr Stuart Stuckey’s Vuela who did really well to win on her handicap debut over a mile and a half at Doncaster. Considering she is a stayer, the slack pace in the race will have done her no favours and she should be seen to even better effect with the emphasis more on stamina.
One making their handicap debut for us this week is Spun Gold, who runs over seven furlongs at Leicester on Tuesday evening. He is a horse that we have always liked and, although he has yet to live up to those expectations on the track, we remain hopeful. Plenty of winners have come out of the Yarmouth novice in which he was sixth last season, so if he is able to build on that here he would not be without a chance. Another Fittocks Stud horse making their handicap debut for us in the coming week will be Total Star although a mark of 95 will require plenty of improvement from him.
The mile fillies’ maiden at Nottingham on Friday evening looks a nice race for Polly Glide, who ran a good fifth at Newmarket on her return in April. That race, however, has plenty of entries and she may not get in. On that same Nottingham card we will also look to run Chocolate Box who, like Polly Glide, is owned by Dahab Racing. Chocolate Box was a bit underwhelming at two, but he has hopefully progressed since then and should be suited by the extra two furlongs on his handicap debut.
Other runners for us on a busy Friday also include Buxted Dream, who took a step forward on his reappearance last month when fourth at Yarmouth. He will hopefully improve again now dropped back to seven furlongs for a maiden on the turf at Lingfield. We are also set to saddle the newcomer Stylish Dancer on Friday in a fillies’ maiden at Ascot. Owned Mr Michael and Mrs Michelle Morris, she is by Nathaniel and related to plenty of stayers on her dam’s side. She will need the race for experience purposes, and is likely to need plenty of time and distance before we see her at her best.
We just have one entry for Saturday’s racing but we are still hopeful to add to our winners total with Wannabe Friends, who caught the eye finishing fast over a mile at Nottingham on his seasonal reappearance. He very much looked as though the step up to a mile and a quarter would suit him and, although he is up 3lb in the weights, should go very close.