A Maiden Stakes over 1m 5y on Standard going.
Nine three-years-old take part: seven horses have race experience with two debutantes.
Let's start with John Gosden's Trenchard. Representing Godolphin, this bay colt is a son Elusive Quality was an expensive yearling purchase at $285,000. This April foal made his debut at Kempton over 7f when priced 4-1. Trenchard was in need of the race, pushed along in rear, before running on well in the closing stages. That formative start will see improvement and this stiffer test looks ideal.
Kevin Ryan fields Armandihan. This son of Zoffany was a costly two-year-old buy at 320,000G. He raced twice at two, fancied both starts, placed third. He ran well on debut although clearly in need of the experience. The race reader gave the comment ''improved'' which detailed there would be better to come. He was made favourite at Redcar, beaten by a couple of fair juveniles. With almost 140 days off course, he will need to be primed.
Cray was relatively fancied when making his debut at Newcastle for James Bethell. It was a fair introduction although nothing special. Returning to the course, he was priced 22-1 when stepping up to one mile. Cray was outpaced and never really competitive. Unless something was amiss last time out, it doesn't look likely.
Coral Princess was hated in the betting on debut priced 66-1. She missed the break, so it could well be the case capable of better. Will struggle to figure unless seriously backed.
Many punters backed Spiritofhayton on his second start over course and distance. David Barron's charge went very close to winning on debut at 25-1. It is probably the case that was a poor race because this son of Big Bad Bob was left standing when returning in February. To be fair, Spiritofhayton pulled hard, which didn't help his cause. However, Excel Again and Bowban were some seven lengths ahead. That was a tough race so it may not be a huge negative to be beaten so far. However, it does suggest this January foal isn't a class horse. It was sad to see William Muir's Saxon Flames fatally injured when competing in that race. He was a talented, brave colt and deserved so much better.
Two debutantes hail from significant horse trainers.
David Simcock can ready a debutante. Temir Kazyk races in the familiar silks of Nurlan Bizakov. He was sent to the sales this month but withdrawn. If priced 13/2 & less has fair each-way claims.
Hugo Palmer fields Harlow who has the hood fitted for the debut. This son of Harlan's Holiday comes from a good family and originally fetched 110,000G (vendor). The stronger in the betting the greater chance. However, a few of their horses making their racecourse bow have run well and bigger odds.
Elements Legacy and Streetwise are best watched.
Conclusion: An intriguing maiden. A few of these cost good money at the sales, in particular, Trenchard and Armandihan. The former will improve for the debut effort. Gosden has good claims with his horses when fancied on their second start. Armandihan cost a lot of money - 320,000G. He was beaten a few lengths at Redcar and may well have been given time to strengthen up. Another who is likely to battle hard. The two debutantes are worthy of note especially if priced 13/2 & less SP. If, outside this betting guide, I would consider the two former horses will take some beating. I would take a watching brief.