Mill Reef preview: Charlie Hills looking for Nebo revival

Fri 22 Sep 2017

By Racinguk.com staff

Charlie Hills is hoping Nebo can cement his full recovery with a big run in Saturday's Dubai Duty Free Mill Reef Stakes at Newbury.

The son of Kodiac, who finished second in the Richmond Stakes, was found to be suffering an infection after a poor run in the Gimcrack at York, but Hills expects a better effort this time.

"He scoped filthy after his last run at York. He's had some treatment for a throat infection which has obviously cleared up now and we've been happy with his last two bits of work. Ryan Moore is going to take the ride," said Hills.

"You could see he ran flat as a pancake at York, so we had him scoped straight after at the racecourse and that is what we found."

In contrast, Invincible Army bids to continue his fine run of form.

Runner-up to Sands Of Mali in the Gimcrack, the James Tate-trained youngster has since lifted the Sirenia Stakes on the all-weather at Kempton.

"He took the Sirenia very well. We thought the chances of getting his ground at Newbury at this time year were slim, but it's good to firm, good in places and there's very little rain forecast," said Tate. "He's in great form."

The Owen Burrows-trained Enjazaat bounced back from a disappointing run in the July Stakes with a confidence-boosting victory at Ripon.

"We've always liked him. He didn't run up to scratch at Newmarket, but back at Ripon he was very impressive last time," said Jim Crowley, retained rider for owner Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum.

"He's been going well at home, it was a good confidence booster and he couldn't have done it any easier. We're going there hopeful."

Clive Cox is pleased conditions have gone in Grand Koonta's favour after being frustrated by the weather since his run in the July Stakes, which has caused him to be a late withdrawal from three races.

Cox said: "We have been bit unlucky in that the ground has been a bit too easy for him on a couple of occasions over the last six weeks.

"Saturday's race is obviously very hotly-contested, but Grand Koonta is a horse we like a lot and it looks like the ground is going to be in his favour."

James Garfield is reported to be in tip-top shape by his trainer George Scott as he tries for consolation following his agonising defeat in the Acomb Stakes at York.

"I have been very pleased with James Garfield since his terrific effort in the Acomb," the Newmaket handler told www.georgescottracing.com.

"Whatever happens, James has been a tremendous flag bearer for the yard this year having been third in the Windsor Castle, fourth in the Vintage Stakes, and second in the Acomb.

"He has not put a foot wrong all season and I don't envisage him doing any different tomorrow. All being well, he will then head to California for the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf."

The Jeremy Noseda-trained Lansky, who was a three-and-three-quarter-length third in the Acomb, reopposes and his jockey Jamie Spencer is hopeful of a good show.

"I haven't ridden the horse, but he looks a nice type," he told At The Races. "He ran well at York and if he's progressed again, he should have a chance."

Tom Dascombe feels there is more to come from No I'm Easy, who takes the hike into Group class after winning a novice event at Thirsk.

"He is in good shape and, although he obviously needs to improve a lot, I think there is a lot of improvement in him," said Dascombe.

"I thought he ran a nice race at Ascot and the horse who beat him has obviously gone on to better things, while he did well to win last time given the race did not really pan out in his favour.

"He is a nice horse with a future and I would not be running him if I thought he was going to finish out the back."

The maiden Rebel Streak has plenty to find on ratings but his trainer Andrew Balding feels the son of Dark Angel is no forlorn hope.

"He has a bit to do, but wasn't seen to best effect last time. He would never have beaten the winner who is a very good horse, but prior to that he was very progressive," said Balding.

"He goes well at home and on the kind of work he is showing us at home, he could easily pinch a place."

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