A fairly quiet last couple of weeks for us, but the highlight must be Rigoletto’s (pictured) win over a mile at Newmarket last Thursday. He has now won his last two starts and is progressing well. His ability to quicken will continue to stand him in good stead going forward and we are very hopeful he can win more races.Royal Ascot runners Banksea and El Vip now both have the 58th John Smith’s Cup at York (over a mile and a quarter) and the Betfred Mile at Goodwood (over a mile) under consideration. Both horses have had an easy time since the Royal Hunt Cup so we will see how they are after they have had a piece of fast work and make a decision then.
Elsewhere, we were a bit disappointed with Near Kettering on his handicap debut at Newmarket given the promise he had shown to win his maiden at Redcar prior to that. We still think he is capable of better than he showed last time and hopefully he can regain the progressive thread. Polly Glide was beaten on the same day, but she had a more obvious excuse, with her saddle slipping before halfway in the maiden she was running in at Bath. She will go for a similar race next time over a mile and a quarter and should be able to make amends.Kitty Boo was on softer ground than she had previously encountered last week at Doncaster and the way she travelled into the race before not finding a great deal suggests that she may have found the conditions a bit testing. She can hopefully see out a mile and a quarter better when she is back on better ground next time. Spinnaka finished second for the fifth time in her six race career on Saturday at York. She continues to find just one too good, but she ran well again and did nothing wrong, pulling clear of the field with the well-bred Godolphin newcomer. Our other Saturday runner was Pacharana at Newmarket, who was up in grade after her Lingfield win. There will be easier opportunities for her than this (beaten by 3 three year olds) in the future.
Coming up this week we have Paris Rooftops who has been declared in a mile and a half fillies maiden at Kempton on Wednesday. There may be one or two warm opponents in that race, but we are happy with her condition and hopefully she can run well. Star Gypsy will also have a few potentially tough opponents in his planned engagement in a handicap at Yarmouth, but he is an improving horse and can hopefully run well on his handicap debut.Chief Craftsman ran into a well fancied one at Doncaster last time and will run in a maiden over the same course and distance on Friday, while Pleasant Surprise will drop back to handicap company on the same card, having previously contested in a Listed at Newbury. She had travelled well for a long way in front in a race where it paid to be held up last time. Other runners this week include Blind Faith and Bedouin, who have engagements at Leicester and Nottingham respectively.