Tom Peacock rounds up the action at Haydock and Newmarket from the continued success of Jason Watson to Main Edition showing her class on Saturday.
Elementary for Watson:
What price that Jason Watson will be part of a Shergar Cup team in the coming years?
Not a stone-cold certainty, given that apprentices who whittle down their claim so rapidly can fall out of fashion as fast as a reality TV contestant who has set foot off the island.
Yet there is an assurance about the latest hotshot, who was treated like a minor hometown hero when riding four winners at the Brighton August Festival following his Stewards’ Cup success at Goodwood last Saturday.
Watson always seems to be in the right position, as illustrated aboard Pogo in the Poppy Nursery, and kept his cool aboard the well-fancied Danceteria, a very impressive winner of the bbag-sales.deHandicap.
He is also the most famous graduate of Hamsey Riding School in Lewis, run by ‘iron man’ jockey Ray Goldstein and his wife Sue, which is also where your author learned the ropes.
It is certainly shorter odds that he will be called up for the Ascot team competition first between the two of us.
Kingscote rides them to sleep:
One did wonder whether the rest of the jockeys in the Smarkets Betting Exchange Rose Of Lancaster Stakes had ever seen Richard Kingscote ride before.
For many years now, and notably this season on Knight To Behold at Lingfield, Tom Dascombe’s jockey has shown what a fine judge of pace he is and, since his move north with the trainer, he has made Haydock his back garden.
So it was folly at the least to allow him to poach an easy lead on Teodoro, the lowest-rated member of the line-up, and keeping this proven stayer up to the gallop for a Group Three prize he might not have won otherwise. Connections are lucky to have him.
It has been hard work for Hugo Palmer with Unforgetable Filly, who had not won since the German 1000 Guineas of last June and had taken a long time to come right following a disappointing visit to Keeneland last October, when the ground was reportedly softer than anticipated.
So credit to the trainer to target the Smarkets/British EBF Dick Hern Stakes at Haydock, on her preferred quick going, as she was as easy a winner as we saw all day.
Seemingly transformed with blinkers, Unforgetable Filly looks right back to being a Group-race performer, even if she was not winning a desperately strong race.
If we begin to get wet weather, perhaps Palmer might be tempted to look across the Atlantic again to find more favourable conditions.
Not so Shambolic:
Horses come from very different backgrounds and it was very encouraging to note the order in which they finished in the Sea The Moon Maiden Fillies' Stakes.
Eventual winner Shambolic will have been given plenty of time by the Duke Of Roxburghe, her owner-breeder, as she is a middle-distance filly in the making as a Shamardal half-sister to prolific Hong Kong galloper Viva Pataca and Laughing, who won the Flower Bowl Invitational in America.
Given a finely-judged and not overly-hard ride by Rab Havlin for John Gosden, she found just enough to keep ahead of expensive breeze-up purchase Hello Bankok, who ought to have had more of an idea of the racing game ahead of their respective debuts. Shambolic looks one to watch in the coming weeks and months, so put him in your Racing UK tracker.
Another quality Edition:
The form of that controversial Duchess Of Cambridge Stakes continues to be boosted since Angel’s Hideaway shone in the Princess Margaret Keeneland Stakes.
That filly caused untold problems to Main Edition, who had looked so smart in the Albany Stakes at Royal Ascot, and she had no chance of maintaining her unbeaten record.
Put into slightly calmer waters and stepped up a furlong for the german-thoroughbred.com Sweet Solera Stakes, Main Edition was a convincing winner ahead of her old rival La Pelosa.
Mark Johnston is not likely to keep her sitting in her box and might yet consider the Sky Bet Lowther Stakes at York, where Angel’s Hideaway could be in opposition once again. Otherwise, the Debutante Stakes at the Curragh a few days afterwards is a sensible back-up.