An EBF Novice Stakes over 6f 3y on good to firm going.
Decent prize money of £9,000+ for this two-year-old contest. Two with racecourse experience and half dozen debutantes.
A race worth taking note.
It's not everyday you go to the races and see a debutante worth 900,000gns. For some money is no object. Legends Of War is a bay son of Scat Daddy out of an unraced mare. In the ownership of Qatar Racing Ltd, trained by John Gosden who does well at this course and especially so with horses strongly fancied in the betting. I doubt connections would be too impressed with losing here but the horse doesn't know the price tag.
Interesting that Qatar Racing Ltd have another debutante here racing in the second colours. Wiretap is a home bred son of Charm Spirit out of a winning [limited] mare. David Simcock gave this April foal a significant entry so he may have ability. Certainly, the second colours may push the price of this horse out to much bigger odds than normal. Jamie Spencer takes the ride. Simcock does well at this course. A horse that may have a glimmer of hope at a price. There is always the fear he will be in need of the run. Watching this horse in the paddock may answer that question.
Charlie Appleby hasn't unveiled too many sparkling talented this year but one visited the winner's enclosure. Leading Spirit is a home bred son of Exceed And Excel out of a Listed-winning mare. The stable have a decent strike rate here with 5-19 winners in the last five years.
James Tate has start this two-year-old campaign in somber fashion. A few juveniles have made their debut but looked backward if not limited. He is an able trainer who can spring a surprise at just about any price. Zmhar is owned by Saeed Manana. This chestnut colt is a son of Shamardal out of a 90-rated winning mare. With a number of his juveniles showing little, bookmakers may be pricing this his horses a little bigger than usual. It is interesting Gerald Mosse takes the ride.
Dragon Kuza was seen just over 20 days ago when making his debut at Chelmsford. This Irish-bred son of Dragon Pulse wasn't overly fancied that day. The hood was applied and he was always struggling for pace. He had been entered for the Lily Agnes but that didn't seem to register as ability. This step up to 6f is going in the right direction. It is interesting to consider how this horse will go. The significant entry may indicate there is better to come. However, you need to take a leap of faith. This looks a competitive heat and not surprising to see him 25-1.
Roger Varian hasn't sent to many juveniles out this season but another trainer who goes well at this course, especially with debutantes. This Irish-bred son of Lope De Vega is out of a Group placed mare who cost 500,000gns at the yearling sales. San Donato is one of the major contenders.
Phoenix Star and Equiano Pearl are best watched.
Conclusion: An exciting two-year-old race that will get plenty of press. With debutantes worth 900,000 and 500,000gns, respectively. Legends Of War cost, literally, an arm and a leg, and trained by John Gosden. Pretty sure this colt will be primed. San Donato is another expensive buy. Roger Varian does well here and I would expect a big run. Added with Leading Spirit, this is a competitive race which may be difficult to assess. Bookmakers aren't giving too much away on the betting of the leading fancies. Quite interested in how Wiretap goes. It is mainly to do with the significant entry. Could be over priced simply because punters feel this horse is here to make up the numbers. Dragon Kuza my improve for that first run. However, he needs to improve markedly. A fascinating race.