I have been a touch quiet with going to Great Yarmouth for the Eastern Festival and then catching up with all the work I missed while away for a few days. I didn't have a bet at the races but won a few quid at the casino. I don't bet much money. Well, best get back to writing a few posts and looking at the two-year-old racing action.
A Maiden Stakes over 5f on a standard to slow going. Ten two-year-olds takes part: six colts and four fillies. Eight horses have race experience and two debutantes.
It will be interesting to see how Michael Bell's Fire Brigade goes after an absence of almost two months. This son of Firebreak has been fancied in the betting both starts and disappointed. The support on both of those runs suggests to me that this bay colt is thought capable of much better. In fact, the statistics for its last start indicated a very big run. That didn't happen. Intriguing to see Spencer takes the ride. A drop back in distance may or not be the key. I imagine the truth of the matter is whether this youngster actually shows what it must have been doing on the gallops. There is a chance that this drop in distance is a blatant option to be completely outpaced and receive a nice handicap mark. Time will tell. There could be a chance Fire Brigade is backed from big odds.
Mr Black was well backed on debut at Thirsk but had a mountain to climb after a slow start. A £120,000 breeze-up purchase by trainer George Scott. Connections must have expected much more last start and it could be the case this colt is capable of much better. I must admit Scott has had a few short priced debutantes fail miserably and this season has been littered with disappointments with his two-year-olds. Jamie Spence was booked to ride on debut but partners Fire Brigade. Mr Black looked to hold some hope when making progress at Thirsk before tiring. The betting suggests a big run is expected and while this isn't a horse I would back myself is worthy of respect.
Rapid Ranger is another breeze-up purchase who cost £75,000. This son of Kyllachy hasn't been seen since May. He was relatively fancied in the betting but had a couple of talents to compete with in Super Julius and Barrington. If priced 13/2 & less has each-way claims.
Seamus Durack doesn't train many two-year-olds but can go well. Orithia cost 35,000G at the yearling sales. This American-bred daughter of More Than Ready is probably best watched unless very well backed.
Philip McBride is a class trainer and I particularly like this two-year-olds on their second start. Supreme Power wasn't fancied in the betting on debut and had a tall order after a slow start. A relatively cheap foal, this son of Power will need to improve on that debut effort but should be wiser today and if fancied in the betting has each-way claims.
Owen Burrows has a decent string of juveniles. With most hailing from Hamdan Al Maktoum, they are worthy of note. He has had a few fancied debutantes disappoint and Kowaiyes doesn't have any lofty entries. This son of Exceed And Excell is a homebred and already a gelding. A difficult horse to assess.
Richard Hughes is another trainer who hasn't really achieved a great deal this first season. Zavikon is a bay colt and son of Compton Place who cost £75,000 at the yearling sales. He showed the ability of debut at Kempton before tiring in the closing stages and that is probably the reason for a drop to the minimum distance. That was a decent debut and if coping with this lesser distance may hold claims.
Charles Hills sends out Kendamara for her second start after a few weeks on the sidelines. This January foal didn't show a great deal on debut, although not beaten too many lengths when going left from the start and always behind. A 1000,000G yearling - better could be expected and if priced 13/2 & less SP has each-way claims.
Sea My Diamond & Miriam Violet are best watched.
Conclusion: Quite an open-looking race. The betting will be the best guide for most. Intrigued to see if Fire Brigade and Mr. Black can do more after being backed on their respective starts. Both could have ability. Money would give more confidence. The betting will detail the chances of Rapid Ranger and Kendamara. If priced 13/2 & less SP have fair each-way claims. If outside this betting guide best watched. Not sure what to think about Kowaiyes. I would fear this horse but wouldn't bet on it today. Supreme Power should improve for his first start and another who has each-way chances.