A Median Auction Maiden Stakes over 1m 1f 103y on Standard going.
Eleven two-year-olds take part: ten with race experience and debutante. A restrictive race type which often favours form horses.
First thoughts, this looks an open race.
Four outsiders would have little hope as far as the betting is concerned. Delegate This Lord, Dream Magic, Hot Lick & Kissinger.
Doctor Bartolo represents Charles Hills. This grey colt is a son of Sir Prancealot out of an unraced mare. He cost 40,000G when purchased at the yearling sales. This March foal wasn't best fancied on debut at Newmarket over 7f when runner-up to Time Zone. He was keen that day, leading, then passed in the final furlong. Making a return at the end of November, Doctor Bartolo was seriously backed to 11-8f. Slowly into stride, he was soon competitive and worn down in the closing stage. Two decent efforts and by race type, this is a drop in class.
Doctor Bartolo is likely to start clear favourote unless something is seriously backed.
A good few of the opponents are similarly priced.
This race types often favour horses with race experience but conversely a debutante with class could lead these a merry dance. John Gosden has Percy B Shelley who is a chestnut colt and son of Archipenko costing 60,000G at the yearling sales. This January foal has an entry for next year's Epsom Derby. The owner, RJH Geffen, has done well with Western Hymn. The betting is the best guide. If backed to favouritism I would expect a big run. However, the stable has respectable win and place claims with their juveniles priced 13/2 & less SP. It may be advisable to let the betting settle unless you wish to anticipate a gamble. If weak in the market, it would be a negative.
Stablemate Hertford Dancer is relatively fancied in the betting and twice raced. This daughter of Foxwedge hasn't been fancied in the betting. A 33-1 shot on debut at Yarmouth she finished tenth. Then fourth behind Azam, who won unchallenged, one of four juveniles in that field for Gosden. This January foal has an element of ability but may be susceptible to a talent.
Mich Channon's stable seems a shadow of its former self, especially within the two-year-old ranks. Pattie is owned and trained by the handler. This daughter of Sixties Icon showed promise on debut when fourth at 16-1, giving the impression she needed the race. She dropped down to 7f at Newcastle, second start, drifting quite markedly in the betting. That was at auction class which should have been easier than her racecourse bow although the winner is decent and for the grade, it may have been a fair contest. This step up in distance should be positive.
Rae Guest's Nostalgie was behind Pattie on her most recent effort after showing ability on three previous starts. Owned and bred by Miss K Rausing, this grey daughter of Archipenko is out of a limited winning mare. After running three creditable races, without setting the world alight, her latest run behind Pattie was a lacklustre affair. There may have been an issue that or a fear she is regressing. This step up in distance is something different and open to debate.
Kingsley Park Stables have done well all season and Mark Johnston keeps finding winners on the all-weather. The Last Debutante wasn't fancied in the betting but wasn't disgraced in a pretty hot maiden over one mile. This daughter of Henrythenavigator cost 30,000E at the yearling sales. The second start saw her compete at auction class. Taking a keen hold didn't help and although beaten less than two lengths was eased towards the finish. Stepping up in distance, this bay filly wouldn't want to be keen. The mare was a talent who enjoyed a trip winning seven times in an illustrious career. A progress horse she rose in the handicap from 65 to 97, taking a Listed race and concluding her racing at Group 3.
Solent Meads hails from Daniel Kubler's stable. This chestnut gelding is a son of Intense Focus out of a multiple-winning but limited mare. This juvenile was priced 50-1 on debut when most likely needing the run. The second start saw this March foal drop to auction class where he was prominent before finishing third beaten two lengths. A fair effort. He was a fraction ahead of The Last Debutante at Chelmsford. Kubler has applied the blinkers which are an interesting move considering he is stepping up a furlong or so.
Conclusion: A tricky race. A relatively limited race type which favours form horses. Doctor Bartolo is a fair juvenile who sets the standard. The betting should tell the story of Percy B Shelley. If very talented he will start favourite and take the beating. If priced 13/2 & SP holds respectable each-way claims. If very weak in the market best watched. Pattie, Nostalgie, The Last Debutante & Solent Meads have shown glimmers of ability. The Last Debutante is well bred from a decent mare who enjoyed a trip so this looks an opportunity to progress with racing. I would take a watching brief.